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The O'Reilly Factor
Wednesday, March 7, 2012
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Reaction to Super Tuesday
Guests: Karl Rove & George Stephanopoulos

"Mitt Romney now has more than 400 delegates, Rick Santorum has 176, Newt Gingrich 105 and Ron Paul 47. So the numbers speak for themselves and in the end the heavy odds say it will be Mitt Romney challenging Barack Obama in November. It doesn't really matter how long the primary process goes - the contest between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton in 2008 was certainly bruising; in fact, Mrs. Clinton did not suspend her campaign until June 7th. It's easy to see why Mitt Romney is having a hard time nailing down the nomination. 40% of Americans describe themselves as conservative, and most of those folks will vote for the most conservative candidate, which happens to be Rick Santorum. Senator Santorum has a big advantage in conservative states like Oklahoma. Looking ahead, anything could happen in the general election - it should come down to the economy, including gas prices. Also, there could be a showdown with Iran that could influence the vote as well. Right now the President and the Republican candidate are pretty much even; the election could go either way. Mitt Romney will likely take more lumps as he continues down the road, picking up delegates along the way. But the race will really be decided in five states - New York, Pennsylvania, Texas, California and New Jersey. Those states have 538 delegates among them and Mitt Romney should win a vast majority. So, like Barack Obama in 2008, June will be big for Romney."

The Factor asked political analyst Karl Rove to assess Super Tuesday and the GOP race. "The headline is 'muddled result out of Super Tuesday,'" Rove said, "but I'm not sure I agree with that - Mitt Romney won most of the contests and most of the delegates. But everybody got something out of Tuesday night and, as a result, we'll continue on for some period of time and it will take months, not weeks, to settle this. I see all four candidates going through March and into April." The Factor added that many in the media are eager to prolong the nomination process: "The liberal mainstream media wants the Republican candidates to destroy one another because that makes it easier for President Obama, so they're invested in saying this is a cliffhanger."

ABC News' George Stephanopoulos entered the No Spin Zone with his take on the Republican horse race. "I think Mitt Romney is almost certainly the nominee," he said, "and right now the big question is how much damage will he take through the rest of this process. His unfavorability ratings are high and he has to find a way to improve that, even as he puts away Rick Santorum and to a lesser extent Newt Gingrich." Stephanopoulos posited that Rick Santorum's ultimate goal is to be Romney's running mate. "The more Romney has to fend off Rick Santorum and the more states Santorum wins, the more Romney has to figure out what he has to give Santorum. Rick Santorum wants to be on the ticket." The Factor immediately declared, "That's not going to happen!"
Polling shows Obama gaining with women
Guests: Monica Crowley & Alan Colmes

Perhaps because of the recent contraception flap, President Obama's approval rating among women has risen to 54%. The Factor invited FNC analysts Monica Crowley and Alan Colmes to weigh in. "This is a direct result of the Sandra Fluke story," Crowley stated. "The Obama administration was so ingenious in turning this around, they deflected it away from a religious liberty argument. The whole thing has been orchestrated by the left." Colmes dismissed the notion that Democrats used Sandra Fluke to score political points. "This was not a setup, it was not orchestrated. This has always been about access for women - it's the conservatives who wanted to make this about something totally different."
Joe the Plumber may be headed for congress
Guest: Juliet Huddy

Samuel Wurzelbacher, aka "Joe the Plumber," won the Republican primary and will run for Congress from Ohio. Fox News correspondent Juliet Huddy elaborated on his unconventional candidacy. "He's running against Democrat Marcy Katpur," Huddy reported. "This would be her 15th term - she's on the powerful Appropriations Committee and she has a lot of money in her war chest. This district leans toward the Democrats so Wurzelbacher may have a problem." Huddy also commented on HBO vulgarian Bill Maher, who has donated $1 million to a Super-PAC that supports President Obama. "Maher made crude remarks about Sarah Palin, but remember that President Obama is not collecting the money, it's the Super PAC that is collecting the money." The Factor urged the PAC to return Maher's money, saying, "In past campaigns people have returned certain donations."
Miller weighs in on the GOP race
Guest: Dennis Miller

Dennis Miller began his segment by commenting on diminutive Congressman Dennis Kucinich, who lost his primary race in Ohio. "You've got to be busted up about this," Miller joked. "Do you think you'll have access to him now that he's going back to Munchkin-land to be a union rep? Go out on your own, Dennis, make a buck and see what the real world is like." Miller turned to Super Tuesday and the Republican race. "I don't think Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul will get out even if Romney is elected president. If I was the GOP candidate come summer and fall, I would just put a debt clock on the front of the podium. I wouldn't even say a word - I'd stand there and watch it go up." Miller also opined on Georgetown Law student Sandra Fluke and her demand that health insurance cover contraception. "I could care less about her proclivities, but this seemed so helpless. We talk about how we all have to 'do our part,' so this 30-year-old career woman can kick in $2.73 a day. I know she's a 'heroine' now, but when I think of heroines I think of Rosa Parks sitting there on the bus."
What's next for the Republicans?
Guest: Dick Morris

Finally, The Factor challenged political strategist Dick Morris to predict where the Republican race goes from here. "Romney will be the nominee on June 6th," Morris declared, "after California and New Jersey and Utah all have primaries on the same day. But there is also a chance that he could also trip up in one or two of these winner-take-all states. The Republicans would then have a fiasco on their hands because we wouldn't have a nominee until the convention. The only strategy Santorum and Gingrich have is to go to a deadlock at the convention, and if we go to a floor fight we might lose, so all Republicans have to think before they vote for Gingrich or Santorum or Paul." The Factor concluded that "if Romney can't wrap it up in June, water is going to start to come on the deck of the Republican ship."
Factor Words of the Day
Viewers sound off
Daniel Coughlin, Staten Island, NY: "O'Reilly, you're right. The Democrats were brilliant in turning a church-state issue into a women's health issue."

Michael Campagna, Bristol, RI: "O'Reilly, your talking points on the Fluke situation were well thought out and eloquently spoken. Everyone should watch them."

Marie Keily, Anderson, IN: "Bill, I am insulted that some think American women cannot see through this health care ploy."
Actor Steve Bridges
Wednesday's Patriot: Comic actor Steve Bridges, known for his dead-on impersonation of President Bush, who has died at age 48.
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