Bottom line

Mitt Romney seems on track to win the Republican presidential nomination. The trick will be to win over conservatives in the process.

The only thing seemingly capable
of stopping Romney at this point might be for other candidates to drop out and back a single Romney rival. So far, it doesn’t appear their egos will allow for that.

Even if conservative voters’ now-infamous hesitation with Romney doesn’t get in the way of his nomination, he should at least want a satisfied and energetic base. So it’s essential in the run-up to the Jan. 21 South Carolina primary that he court conservatives more than ever.

But there need to be more than platitudes. This area of the country is still hurting from George W. Bush’s lack of conservatism, particularly on the budget. So it would be reassuring if Mr. Romney would make pledges in writing to balance the budget and reduce the size of government.

In blood. It’s that important.

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