Government
7:00 am
Mon March 12, 2012

Pennsylvania “Important” Republican Battleground

Now that Super Tuesday has failed to shake any of the four Republican presidential candidates out of the race, it's looking like Pennsylvania's April 24th primary will be hotly contested.

There are five states holding their primary elections on April 24th, including New York and Pennsylvania, with big delegate counts at stake.

"We will be important," said Shirley Anne Warshaw, a political science professor and presidential scholar at Gettysburg College, "both because we are part of a collective group and, by April 24th, there aren't enough delegates at stake in March and early April, there's only one earlier primary, that's April 3rd, that will really make a significant difference."

Because of the four-way split of the race, Warshaw said candidates are going after "at-large" delegates, who pick their candidate, instead of pledging their votes to whichever contender wins a certain congressional district.

Pennsylvania has 10 unpledged delegates. Warshaw said Mitt Romney in particular is vying for their support by sewing up as many endorsements from prominent Republicans as possible.

"It's going to be very difficult for him to win the required delegate count by the Republican convention because of the four-way split right now," said Warshaw, "but by pulling these at-large delegates that the various states have he has a chance of actually going over."

The National Committeeman, Committeewoman, and state party chair carry uncommitted votes into the convention.

She said that although candidates may be going after endorsements and party insiders, Pennsylvanians can still expect to see a barrage of campaign ads on radio and television.