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A Jewish Guide to the South Carolina Primary

More palmettos than Jews!

Marc Tracy
January 20, 2012
Charleston, South Carolina.(Wikipedia)
Charleston, South Carolina.(Wikipedia)

When? Tomorrow.

Number of candidates actually contesting: Four.

Who dropped out? Jon Huntsman, Rick Perry.

The remaining candidates: Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum.

Our sentimental favorite: Fred Karger. Also, Stephen Colbert, which is to say, Herman Cain.

Remember when Herman Cain was a serious Republican candidate? Yeah, it was like two months ago.

Percentage of state population that is Jewish: .3 percent.

Where that ranks: 32nd (tied) out of 50.

Jewish issues? Enh.

Who’s going to win? Maybe Mitt Romney, but maybe Newt Gingrich. This is very exciting for those of us who may happen to have picked Gingrich in a pool among friends two years ago!

Has any Republican ever won the nomination without winning the South Carolina primary? No.

So, is this a must-win? Yes for Gingrich, no for Romney.

Explain? If Gingrich wins and can then follow that up with a win in Florida, that could at least force Santorum to drop out and leave him head-to-head with Romney for the non-Paul vote, which will be big but never big enough. Even then, February’s slate of states are good match-ups for Romney, and he’ll have the money and the organization. But it won’t be entirely sewn up. If Romney wins, then he’ll have survived his biggest challenge yet and be well on his way to the nomination.

Number of delegates to the Republican National Convention: 25.

Winner-take-all or proportional? Both! Winner gets 11; winners of each of seven congressional districts get two apiece.

What’s next? Florida, Jan. 31.

So, Jews finally! Yup.

Marc Tracy is a staff writer at The New Republic, and was previously a staff writer at Tablet. He tweets @marcatracy.