Kansas City, Missouri (CNN) - Mitt Romney downplayed expectations in Mississippi and Alabama's Republican contests, saying he expected to walk away with about a third of the delegates when the votes are counted Tuesday night.
"If that's the case, why, that inches us closer to that magic number," he told reporters on his campaign plane in Missouri, underlining his campaign's ferocious attention to the delegate count in the GOP race.
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Polls show Romney, who has struggled to win over some southern voters, now running competitively with his rivals in Mississippi and Alabama.
A win among the staunchly conservative electorate in those states could propel Rick Santorum or Newt Gingrich to renewed attention, and reinforce concerns about Romney's ability to draw in evangelical and socially conservative voters.
Conversely, a Romney win in a southern state could put a stop to those nagging doubts.
Romney joked with reporters about his 65th birthday Monday as he handed out iced shamrock and Leprechaun-shaped cookies.
His favorite gift?
"A kiss from my wife," Romney said. "That was the only present I got."
Brokered GOP convention in 120 degree weather....These GOP guys are damaged goods...and Climate Change is a myth...
Romney is focusing on the magic number 1 billion dollars in his checking account.
Four, let me give you a little lesson of American politics. The federal bureaucracy (executive branch) are the ones who spend the money whereas congress allocates funds. Federal spending has been reletively stagnant since your Republicans took the House. The only significant spending reductions were in the Defense Department which Obama proposed and the Republicans vehimently opposed. Your patron saint Boehner really hasn't done all that much.
the magic number that RoMoney is focussed on is held in his blind trust
Romney is the candidate to turn the economy around; however between the evangilical idiots and the dems who have been misled into thinking the economy is doing fine, the United States will be fortunate to get real business leadership come November. I shudder to think of the economic collapse that is coming.
maybe he can get that "magic number" embroidered onto his Morman "magic underpants"...