Doug Deal

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Why the GOP race is over — It’s the math, stupid

Various people are debating whether having Gingrich in the race helps or hurts Romney’s chances of reaching 1,144 delegates and clinching the GOP nomination. Many of Santorum’s supporters think that Gingrich is robbing him of delegates that he needs to stop Romney, while Gingrich supporters are arguing that splitting the delegates makes it more difficult for Romney to win. The fact is, it does not matter, because barring finding Romney in bed with a dead girl or live boy, as Edwin Edwards once put it, he has clinched it mathematically.

Taking a look at the current standings, estimated by TheGreenPapers.com we have:

  • Romney: 493 - 51%
  • Santorum: 235 - 24%
  • Gingrich: 157 - 16%
  • Paul: 77 - 8%

That’s 962 decided delegates with 1,324 remaining.

With that many delegates remaining, how can it be over?

Well, there are two ways to allocate the delegates that remain. One is by a proportional system where each candidate gets some amount of delegates that are in proportion to each candidates share of the vote. So, if 30 delegates are at stake and three candidates split evenly, each would get 10. The other is winner take all, where the person securing the plurality (the most) of the vote gets all of the delegates.

The winner take all states that remain are: DC, MD, WI, DE, IN, CA, NJ, UT.

If a single candidate gets a majority in the following states, is it winner take all, but proportional otherwise: PR, CT, NY.

Let’s assume that Gingrich and Paul stay in and therefore PR, CT and NY will stay proportional.  Of the WTA states, Romney is all but assured victory in DC, DE, CA, NJ, and UT. Together, those are 298 delegates. Being as generous as possible and giving Santorum the other 125 WTA delegates we have:

Coming Soon: Means Tested Criminal Penalties?

Switzerland apparently now fines drivers based on their wealth in addition to their offense.  A Swiss man was was fined $290,000 for a speeding ticket.  Because of his wealth, the basic fine was multiplied by 130 to arrive at the higher figure.

Under Swiss law he was fined for the offence, then had the sum multiplied by 130 to account for his fortune.

The penalty is the highest speeding fine handed out in Switzerland. He was ordered to pay half of it in cash immediately with two years for the rest.

Is a crime committed by a rich man more serious than one committed by someone of more modest means?  Should the penalty reflect the relative severity on the individual or should the fine for the same act be the same for all people?

As an analogy, a young man should get a longer prison term than an older man since the sentence would be such a larger percentage of the older man’s life expectancy.  The slippery slope of such a principle could one day lead to differential pricing at supermarkets and other entities that perform a service labeled a “right” or “need” by a government.  When the prices are all different, dependent on your wealth, what is the point of wealth?

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