Mitt Romney is the winner of the Florida presidential preference primary vote. This is not all that surprising considering that his campaign and backers most likely spent in excess of $15 million in just one state, mostly to attack Newt Gingrich.
Florida also has a lot of old people. Wisdom is supposed to come with age, but not necessarily when it comes to politics. Romney does especially well with senior citizens, while it is the worst group for Ron Paul.
Speaking of Ron Paul, he took about 7% of the vote. I was hoping for 10%, but it was to be expected given that he did not campaign (other than the debates) and he did not spend advertising money in Florida. In addition, the demographics do not favor him as just mentioned. Florida is a huge market without the delegates to match the population due to being penalized for holding its primary early. Plus, Florida is a take-all state, where the winner gets all of the delegates. Even without trying, Paul more than doubled his percentage from 4 years ago.
Ron Paul is wisely spending his time and money in caucus states where he can likely win, or at least take delegates. He is campaigning in Maine, Minnesota, Colorado, and Nevada.
There is no indication that Santorum or Gingrich will drop out, but you never know what might happen in the next few days. The demographics in Florida favored Romney, so there really is no reason for the other candidates to drop out, unless they are just plain tired or completely out of money. Florida is not really a "southern state" (culturally, not geographically). It is not like South Carolina where Gingrich won.
One thing that surprises me, although it shouldn't, is how many people are saying that the number one thing they are looking for in the Republican nominee is whether they can beat Obama. I guess that is why the Republican Party may nominate the founder of Obamacare, although it is called Romneycare for those living in Massachusetts.
By this logic of the Republican voters, if Hillary Clinton were to change party registration and run on the Republican ticket, then I guess all of these Republican voters should support Hillary Clinton since she has the best chance of beating Obama, particularly with the Republican vote solidly behind her. It just shows the absurd thinking of so many voters out there.
This race is not over yet. I am not naive though. I realize that Romney is the strong favorite at this point. Intrade agrees with me on this (or do I agree with Intrade). Intrade has Romney's chances at close to 90% of being the nominee, as of this writing.
The longer this thing drags out, the better. It is more of an opportunity for people to learn about Ron Paul and his message of peace and liberty.