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Absent a Romney Sweep, Pa. Pollster Sees Continued Life For Santorum Campaign

(Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum at a Tea Party rally on February 18th.  Credit: Jay LaPrete/ Getty Images)

(Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum at a Tea Party rally on February 18th. Credit: Jay LaPrete/ Getty Images)

(Capitol dome, Harrisburg, Pa.   File photo) Tony Romeo
  Tony Romeo is Harrisburg bureau chief for KYW Newsradio...
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By Tony Romeo

HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) — A prominent political analyst believes a clean sweep, or something close, by Mitt Romney in today’s “Super Tuesday” primaries is likely the only thing that would make Pennsylvania’s April 24th Republican presidential primary irrelevant.

Franklin and Marshall College pollster Terry Madonna believes Romney is likely to win at least five of the ten Super Tuesday primaries.  And Madonna believes that to remain a viable candidate, Rick Santorum must run close in Ohio and win one or two other states (see related news analysis).

madonna terry fm1 Absent a Romney Sweep, Pa. Pollster Sees Continued Life For Santorum Campaign

(Terry Madonna of Franklin & Marshall College. Photo provided)

After that, Madonna (right) says, the campaign trail heads south:

“Santorum and Gingrich at the moment are likely to do well in the southern states. The difficulty that Santorum has is there seems to be a growing consensus that Romney is likely to be the nominee.  And if that inevitability sets in, that’s his biggest problem.”

Madonna says if Santorum, whose best Super Tuesday chances he believes are in Tennessee and Oklahoma, can avoid being shut out, he will likely remain in the race.  Madonna’s own poll shows the former US senator riding high in his delegate-rich home state of Pennsylvania.

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