March 7th, 2012
01:58 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Will GOP voters accept Romney? Does it matter?

Editor's note: This post is part of the Overheard on CNN.com series, a regular feature that examines interesting comments and thought-provoking conversations posted by the community.

Mitt Romney came out ahead on Super Tuesday, but plenty of Republicans voted for Rick Santorum instead, and Georgia went for Newt Gingrich by a decisive margin. The morning after, readers are exploring two questions. First, why haven't GOP voters fully embraced Romney? Second, does this apparent conflict actually mean anything in the long run?

Analysis: In key Romney win, some warning signs remain

One reader offered this theory:

chadpv: "Republicans' main focus is who can beat Obama in November. That's what is driving votes. But Republicans are not confident that Romney (or any candidate in the run) can beat Obama; they just think if someone can squeeze a win, it will be Romney. That is why he cannot really 'seal the deal' as fast as most Republican primaries. That is also why the field is very weak, Anyone who has wide appeal with the Republicans will wait four more years when there is not an incumbent running and their chances are better to win."

Doucher: "And this is one of many problems with the two-party system; they want to beat each other more than they want to give us a good candidate."

Another person said Romney doesn't need to worry too much.

GoPSULions: "The ultra conservatives that are not now voting for Romney will vote for whoever wins the nomination rather than vote for Obama. So this is why Romney is not concerned about their votes in the primaries. He is focused on staying more to the middle so he can potentially win the swing states and voters that are not locked to voting straight party lines."

Of course, several other readers disagreed.

anamule: "That may be true, but he can't count on it. Especially after he swerves back towards the center during the general election. The far right, who already suspect he is a closet liberal, may just have their suspicians confirmed and feel completely betrayed. That doesn't bode well for a high turnout for him."

eyewonder: "I still contend that voters in the swing states will not elect a Mormon to the White House. That center section of the country, and the South, that voted for Santorum will not vote for Romney. I continue to hope the GOP Leadership has a master plan for the convention. What I see and hear from both Romney and Santorum kind of scares me."

TomStPaul: "Don't know that I agree. The ultras are do or die, black or white, y'ain't fer us yer against us types. If Romney's (the GOP candidate), no they won't vote for Obama, but they will either stay home or write in someone like Santorum or Ron Paul or Sara Palin or some other absolutist, just to send a message (though no one will be listening to them at that point)."

Like eyewonder above, iReporter Omekongo Dibinga of Washington said he thought Romney's religious beliefs are one factor that hurts him.

omekongo: "These are the three reasons that Romney is having trouble sealing the deal: 1) he's out of touch with the average voter; 2) his record on healthcare; and 3) he's a Mormon. The only thing he can really change about himself is the first issue. He has to do a better job of connecting with voters."

Like TomStPaul above, several readers wondered whether voters will skip the polls.

nocode42: "Oh come on, who else are they going to back? Obama? Why does everyone keep acting like Romney's inability to appeal to a lunatic right-wing fringe that is maybe 15% of the population (but 55% of the GOP primary voting population) is some sort of bad thing? If he can win without appealing to them, it'd be the best thing to happen to America in decades ... show these fruit loops we're tired of their nonsense and backwards ways."

pxypylon: "He needs those votes to beat Obama. The concern isn't that they'll vote for Obama instead. The concern is that they will stay home on Election Day."

Indeed, iReporter Katy Brown of Kent, Ohio, said she didn't vote in her state's tight primary.

"There's not a person on the ballot, Democratic or Republican, that I think deserves to be president," she said.

She has been a conservative voice at CNN iReport for years, including during the 2008 election. Here's how she summarized her views, in a comment response to another reader:

kbrown0419: "Romney, too disconnected from the real world. Paul, too far out there, however, I do agree with some of his ideas. Gingrich, like Paul, some things I agree with, but I feel like he disappeared. Santorum, way too religion and tea party-based for my taste. Big things I'm looking at: abortion/birth control, higher education, military, gay rights, and, oddly enough, the whole marijuana deal. I've done my research. However, I could not get myself to vote on a single person. There's no one I could mark down and feel I made the right decision. I, like the rest of American voters, have put my faith in other voters and hope they make the right choice in the primaries because I certainly felt like I couldn't. Come November I will be at the polls."

William Bernstein of Virginia Beach, Virginia, didn't vote, either. His state's ballot situation was a bit different.

WCNreporter: "Even though I live in Virginia where the primaries were being held today, I decided not to go vote, not because I am a Republican or a Democrat, but I am just not sure about either of the presidential candidates in the running right now. But hopefully that will be cleared up by the general election this fall. On the ballot here in Virginia is only Mitt Romney and Ron Paul, so even then, not much of a choice."

Will things work themselves out? What do you think? Share your opinion in the comments area below. Or, answer this CNN iReport question on video: Why can't Romney seal the deal?

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

soundoff (61 Responses)
  1. george of the jungle

    really sad that the repos are more interested in beating Obama than finding some one that can help move this country forwrd. Repos give us no choices at all Obama 2012

    March 8, 2012 at 11:30 am | Report abuse |
    • HOWARD

      ONCE AGAIN, OBAMA RELIES ON PUBLIC RELATIONS,
      SINCE HE HAS A DISMAL RECORD TO RUN ON ...

      Here’s what 0bama has done
      Operation Fast & Furious
      Obamacare
      $5 TRILLION in DEBT first term of 0bama
      Failures of Solyndra, NextEra, Light Squared, Ener1 and numerous others
      Failure to enforce Federal immigration laws
      Failure to approve Trans-Canada Keystone Pipeline
      Failure to accept reforms from Simpson-Bowels (his own commission)
      15.9% U-6 Real Unemployment
      Skirting Congress with unelected ‘czars’ to protect his donors
      America’s Credit Downgrade causes OUR investments to tank
      30% loss in value of OUR homes
      20 years of Rev. Wright’s racism
      Bailing out GM & Chrysler unions’ pensions with OUR taxes
      Highest Food Stamp usage in history
      Out-of-control NLRB giving unions more power so their donations grow
      Suing AZ., and Al. and SC. and Boeing.
      $800B for ‘shovel-ready’ Stimulus jobs that produced NO JOBS
      Dept. of Energy under contempt of court and over 100 investigations
      No Energy Policy…Oil, Natural Gas & Coal production anemic
      No Foreign Policy other than alienate and isolate our allies (Israel)
      Apologizing to Muslims and enemies of the USA
      Acorn / Union cronyism paybacks with OUR Taxes
      1200 0bamaCare waivers to Democrat donators
      Taking No responsibility while Blaming everything else
      AND 0BAMA CAMPAIGNS AND FUND RAISES…BETWEEN VACATIONS

      March 8, 2012 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Smako

      I hear you most of the way Howie, but the Trans Canada pipeline was a pipeline that went from Canada to the gulf of Mexico. Let Canada pay for it and let them pay for the right of way to use it to sell their oil to the rest of the world.

      March 9, 2012 at 1:43 am | Report abuse |
  2. bill california

    We voted a Catholic as our president and John did a great job. Why can't we elect a Mormon and give him a chance to prove himself. We let Obama do it. let's get on with helping our country heal.

    March 8, 2012 at 11:40 am | Report abuse |
  3. tedt

    The choice is do you want working people attacked so the rich get richer or do you want to prosper and have decent wages if you answered yes to the first statement vote republican if you said yes to the second statement vote democrat

    March 8, 2012 at 12:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Smako

      If there is a candidate that the working class can trust, he can't afford to get his name out. They are all millionaires, and they all want to make more millions next year than this year. Anyone who would spend $100 million dollars to get a job that only pays a million per term cannot be trusted. They call themselves successful, they can't live on less than $30 million and they call themselves successful. There are single working mothers with jobs raising 5 kids that are making it on less than $40K, that is successful.

      March 9, 2012 at 1:40 am | Report abuse |
  4. Ed Mack

    Disagree with the opinions that us old Republicans will automatically votefor who ever ends up on the ballet. If
    Mitt is the choice against Obama, I'll just get a good book and sit at home come election day...

    March 8, 2012 at 5:39 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Smako

    People fear Mormons, whether they actually believe a Mormon can hypnotize you if you look them in the eyes or they believe that Christ was not an angel, they just fear Mormons. People think there are secret rituals in the Temples, nearly 300 years of Mormons, you have to believe they have been infiltrated by now. Personally, I fear the people who demand tolerance when they have none for anyone else more than I fear Mormons.

    March 9, 2012 at 1:36 am | Report abuse |
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