Colorado caucuses are held tomorrow, with 36 delegates up for grabs proportionally. Ron Paul will be a factor, as he is in all proportional caucuses, and can be expected to pick up a few more delegates. Mitt Romney will probably clinch another first place, with momentum on his side and lack of a fire-breathing evangelical opposing him to seduce Colorado’s available Christian vote.
Colorado evangelicals love to be wooed. Ted Haggard, Colorado Springs megachurch mogul and noted gay sexpot, had the state’s extreme right wing in his pocket for years (and what they did there we can only speculate). He stayed firmly atop the uber-rich Christian pack, scooping up the shekels with the alacrity of a temple money-changer. A goodly amount of the moolah went to pay for the services of gay male prostitutes. When discovered he repented, of course, and was forgiven, of course, with "Christian therapists" working on him, as it were, to pray the gay away and declare him cured: "100 percent heterosexual." Which didn’t last long, of course – are we shocked? – as the recidivism rate among gay Christian gay-bashing preachers is also 100 percent. He is presumably currently engaging in one of three activities: 1. Preaching and taking the money of gullible idiots, 2. Dallying with a gay male prostitute, or 3. Repenting his actions. Repenting No. 2, not No. 1.
So who would Ted Haggard tell his followers that Jesus would vote for? A Mormon? Eww. One of the two Catholics? Rick Santorum might be a good fit for the hot-to-trot evangelical base of the GOP Republican electorate, but there’s that pesky Catholic thing. They like a big hunk of manly megachurch in those parts, and the Catholics are a bit too introspective for them. We suspect Opus Dei could make some inroads in the Rocky Mountain State, but currently, no, the Frank Peretti-reading right rules the roost. Newt Gingrich? They probably don’t have a problem with the serial fornication and repentance, but Mr. Gingrich is a bit too intellectual for them. "The Perfesser," as they call him during their late-night forays of vandalism against the local New Age bookshop, has read a few too many tomes himself.
The Western Individualists are the other large group of voters – think Adolph Coors dressed like Heath Ledger from "Brokeback Mountain." A certain number of them will go with Ron Paul, though the idea of America Without Endless Wars probably scares the crap out of them.
Frankly, there is no clear choice for the GOP base in Colorado. Voter turnout will be down from four years ago. Mr. Romney – eww – will win by default. And, in November, he will lose by default.
Minnesota caucuses Tuesday as well, with 40 GOP delegates up for grabs. Mr. Gingrich stands a better chance here than in Colorado. His polling numbers have been strong, and Mr. Romney has not carpet-bombed the airwaves as comprehensively as he did in Florida. Delegates will be awarded proportionally, and we suspect that even if Mr. Gingrich does not win in total votes, the count will be close enough for a near-even split with Mr. Romney in delegates. Ron Paul will get his handful. Rick Santorum will continue to fade, and we wait expectantly for him to "suspend" his campaign.
The slow grind to Tampa continues.