Mitt Romney's Super Mediocre Tuesday

Every time it seems like Mitt Romney is finally going to clinch the nomination, he disappoints. Yesterday, Super Tuesday, he sailed to victory in four out of the 10 states, and eked out wins in two other states. He lost the other four.

The states he did win weren’t that impressive. To update a smart point from New York’s Dan Amira last night: Romney won Massachusetts (a liberal state where he used to be governor), Vermont (a bordering liberal state), Virginia (where his only competition was Ron Paul), and Idaho (which has a good-sized Mormon population). He narrowly defeated Santorum in Ohio (the nation’s most important swing state) and Alaska (where only 13,000 people or so voted). Romney may have ended up with more delegates, but it wasn’t exactly the kind of convincing victory that will get the GOP to fall in step behind you.

Meanwhile, Romney’s problem in America’s heartland continues. Rick Santorum took Oklahoma, Tennessee, and North Dakota, while Newt Gingrich won his home state of Georgia. Take a look at this map from the New York Times: The former Massachusetts governor has yet to win a state in the middle or south of the country (Florida doesn’t count, as it often votes more like a Northeastern state). The upcoming primaries aren’t going to get any easier: The next big states to vote are Kansas (March 10), Alabama (March 13), Mississippi (March 13), and Missouri (March 17). Unless Romney can figure out his Southern strategy — and quick — this primary is going to be dragging on for a long time.