[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/images/02/03/art.romneyle.ap.jpg caption=" Romney appeared on CNN's Late Edition Sunday."](CNN) - Mitt Romney predicted Sunday his party's conservative base will rally behind him on Super Tuesday in order to prevent John McCain from winning the Republican nomination.
"What I have to do is continue to see what's been happening the last few days, specifically that is conservatives across the country are saying, 'whoa, we have to get behind Mitt Romney,'" he said on CNN's Late Edition.
"You've got people like Rush Limbaugh and Laura Ingraham and the list goes on and on and on - Hugh Hewitt, Lars Larson - conservative voices, both from radio and from publications, are saying, 'you know what, we've got to get behind Mitt Romney,'" he continued. "We really can't afford John McCain as the nominee of our party."
Following McCain's victory in Florida Tuesday, some prominent conservatives have expressed dismay with the prospect of the Arizona senator capturing the Republican nomination. On Wednesday, talk-radio host Rush Limbaugh said McCain's rise was the product of a 'fractured' conservative base and an "uninspiring" GOP presidential field.
"He is not the choice of conservatives, as opposed to the choice of the Republican establishment — and that distinction is key," Limbaugh said. "The Republican establishment, which has long sought to rid the party of conservative influence since Reagan, is feeling a victory today as well as our friends in the media."
Meanwhile, conservative commentator Ann Coulter said Thursday she would support Hillary Clinton over McCain.
"If you are looking at substance rather than if there is an R or a D after his name, manifestly, if he's our candidate, than Hillary is going to be our girl, because she's more conservative than he is," Coulter said. "I think she would be stronger on the war on terrorism."
But McCain also picked up support from some key conservatives this week, such as former Solicitor General Ted Olson and Georgia Sens. Johnny Isaacson and Saxby Chambliss, and on CBS Face the Nation Sunday the Arizona senator said, "I have a strong conservative record that I'm proud to run on."
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- CNN Producer Alexander Mooney