The Romney campaign had planned to advertise in the Washington D.C. and Baltimore markets in advance of the upcoming contests in Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia next Tuesday, CNN reports. Now, the campaign is considering whether or not to move forward.
"As of early this AM it was a go," a campaign source told CNN, though an advisor admitted that "it is tough to saddle up" this morning.
After his Jan. 29th loss to McCain in Florida, Romney briefly considered not buying ads in Super Tuesday states, though he ultimately decided to do so. Electing not to advertise would have been a tacit admission that he believed his campaign, into which he has invested more than $35 million of his own money, had become a lost cause.
Meanwhile, Politico reports that the McCain campaign is arguing that Romney's bid is indeed a lost cause. In a memo, McCain strategist Charlie Black suggests "the math is nearly impossible for Mitt Romney to win the nomination."
"The remaining contests account for roughly 963 delegates," Black writes. "For Mitt Romney to match our delegate [count], he would have to win more than 50% of those delegates." Black also notes that because many upcoming contests reward delegates proportionately, not on a winner-take-all basis, "Mitt will have to win by big margins in many states to garner every last delegate."
CBS News estimates that McCain presently has 677 delegates to Mike Huckabee's 159 and Romney's 152. 1,191 delegates are necessary to clinch the GOP nomination.
As the results came in last night, Romney vowed to continue his campaign.
"I think there's some people who thought it was all going to be done tonight, but it's not all done tonight," Romney said. "We're gonna keep on battling. We're gonna go all the way to the convention. We're gonna win this thing, and we're gonna get in the White House."