Barring a deal between Romney and McCain, no one could have achieved a majority of the delegates and a brokered convention would have been inevitable. Under this allocation and the likely breakdown of delegates in the contests that came after, Huckabee would have been able to choose the nominee and get the Vice Presidential nomination for whomever he wanted.
This is important for our purposes in examining the current primary contest. If anything, any so-called front-runner in this race is likely to be even weaker than McCain was, particularly by his “inevitability phase.”
We can see this by looking at four insider advantage polls from the four early states Based on these polls, delegates would be allocated as follows:
In New Hampshire
In South Carolina
Of course, it won’t shake out exactly as the polls currently predict, but if it’s at all close
we are headed toward gridlock. To avoid official gridlock, a candidate must win 50 percent of all delegates. That means either Romney or Cain must increase their current delegate takes by nearly 50 percent. At this point, this seems quite unlikely. A brokered convention, as would have happened last time under the same rules, is the better bet.