‘Math isn’t adding up,’ Gingrich delegate says
By Mark Preston and Gregory Wallace
(CNN) — As the delegate count has become increasingly stacked against Newt Gingrich, the candidate has stood by his pledge to carry the fight to the Republican convention this summer, or at least until a GOP nominee is determined.
But after the former House speaker’s third place finish in Louisiana on Saturday, one amongst his slate of possible delegates called him a “one trick pony in the South.”
“I think at a certain point — and it’s probably going to be in the near term rather than the long term — that Newt Gingrich is going to step aside, because he has only won two contests,” Crystal Wright, a Washington, D.C., delegate for Gingrich, said on CNN Saturday night.
“The math isn’t adding up and he’s going to go down looking like a spoiler,” she added.
Wright appears on Gingrich’s slate as one of the delegates who would represent him at the GOP convention in Tampa should he win delegates in the District of Columbia primary. Voters there go to the polls on April 3.
With each passing contest, the delegate math has stacked higher against Gingrich, who has claimed first place in only South Carolina and Georgia, his home state.
No candidate is close to the magic 1,144 required to seal the nomination, but former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney leads with 563, former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania has 259, Gingrich is in third with 137, and Texas Rep. Ron Paul trails with 71.
Gingrich has argued that he was performing better before he faced millions of dollars in negative advertising from the main pro-Romney super PAC, which he says slowed his progress in Iowa.
Considering the numbers, Wright told CNN’s Don Lemon that “just because I’m a Newt delegate does not mean I’m not a realist.”
“Newt has only won two of the, well, 28 contests now,” she said. “He won South Carolina and Georgia, and that does not a GOP nominee make, okay? I’m frustrated. I think Newt is really the best candidate with the best message. He’s talking about the right things — energy, getting the economy back on track — but organization and fundraising does matter and that’s where Newt has fallen woefully short.”
Wright discounted Santorum’s win in Louisiana on Saturday, saying he is “living in an illusion,” and that the elements do not add up for him to win the nomination either.
“The math is not there and the voters are not there for him across all groups,” she said. “Romney is actually more and more sealing the deal, winning across more groups than Rick Santorum: women, men, working class vote he got in Illinois.”
Prior to the Louisiana vote, Gingrich needed 1,007 delegates to win the nomination, or 82% of those still to be decided. Romney needed only 47% of those which remain, and Santorum, 72%.
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