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romney’s uphill battle

Jonathan Martin wrote an excellent piece in Politico today on Mitt Romney’s chances in 2012 entitled, “A big warning sign for Mitt Romney.”

Martin writes that many key supporters of Romney in 2008 have not said that they would fully support the candidate running again in 2012.  It is obviously still very early and Romney has not even officially announced he is running yet, but as the author points out the key endorsement of his last presidential bid is remaining uncommitted.

Former Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.) the top elected official in the Granite State whose endorsement of Romney in 2008 was seen as a pivotal moment, said in an interview that he’s firmly undecided about who he’ll back in next year’s primary.

If Senator Gregg ends up supporting someone other than Romney it would be a big blow to him in a state that he very much needs to win.

As the article also points out another key state that Romney would like to win is South Carolina. Senator Jim DeMint (R-S.C.)  a former Romney supporter and perhaps more importantly a huge influence among conservatives supported Romney in 2008 but has also not committed to supporting him in 2012.

One thing that could work to Romney’s favor this time around is that Romney supported numerous candidates in 2010 and here in Tennessee he supported current Governor Bill Haslam. If Haslam returns the favor it could catapult him into winning the Tennessee Republican primary which he lost to Mike Huckabee in 2008.

It is much too early to tell how relevant the “non-endorsements” are to his chances. But it is certain that if Romney runs he will need a combination of new support and old support to secure the nomination.