Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney's outspent former House Speaker Newt Gingrich five-to-one in Florida and it looks like it's paying off. Romney's expected to take Florida with a double-digit victory tomorrow and experts say there's no going back now.
"It is obvious that Romney will be the nominee, barring disaster," says Larry Sabato, the director of the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia.
The most recent Quinnipiac survey released this morning shows Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney with a 43 percent to 29 percent lead over Gingrich among Republican voters in Florida.
Only 7 percent of respondents likely to vote in the nation's first closed primary said they were undecided, but the only hope for Gingrich seems to be that 24 percent of respondents admitted they could change their minds before the vote Tuesday.
The poll reveals substantial growth in numbers over the weekend for the Romney campaign, which was predicted to win in Florida 38 to 29 percent in the Quinnipiac poll released just three days ago.
Romney also shows a significant range of support in Florida from self-described conservatives who supported Romney by nearly 10 points more than Gingrich. Surprisingly even Tea Partyers—who many analysts thought would lean more in the Gingrich direction—supported Romney by five points.
"Romney carries every part of the GOP coalition, including the parts central to Gingrich—self-described conservatives, white evangelical Christians and Tea Party supporters," says Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. "If this margin holds up tomorrow, it's hard to see where Gingrich goes from here."