1. Mitt Romney is set to win all 20 of the delegates at stake in today's Puerto Rico Republican primary. He is currently beating Rick Santorum there by 83 percent to 8 percent, a 10-1 margin that is about 33 points better than he needed to make the commonwealth winner-take-all.
Many will blame Santorum's comments about whether the island should be English-speaking or not if granted statehood, suggesting that this was a gaffe that cost him dearly in Puerto Rico. But Puerto Rico usually supports the well-known national frontrunner in primaries and caucuses by enormous margins. George Bush won 99 percent of the vote there in 1992, Bob Dole 98 percent in 1996, George W. Bush 94 percent in 2000, and John McCain 90 percent in 2000. Romney characteristically underperformed a bit but still won by a large landslide. Romney also enjoyed the support of Gov. Gov. Luis Fortuno, the commonwealth's most prominent Republican and a rising conservative star. Santorum's biggest gaffe was probably spending time contesting Puerto Rico at all.
2. The Missouri caucuses, expected to be much friendlier territory for Santorum, were something of a debacle with no clear victor. The proceedings at some of the caucus sites were reportedly contentious, with at least two Ron Paul supporters arrested. ABC News is reporting that it was a good day for Paul forces overall, though many local observers believe Santorum -- who won the state's nonbinding primary by a comfortable margin -- did just fine.
3. Paul could use a good day. His normally well funded insurgent campaign spent more than it took in during the month of February, and according to some reports is starting to hemorrhage cash. These reports and a paucity of recent contributions from a pro-Paul super PAC could indicate that Paul's donors and supporters expect better results than their candidate has registered in recent statewide contests.
4. On Tuesday, the House Budget Committee will unveil the Republican majority's fiscal 2013 budget. It will be an update of Chairman Paul Ryan's Path to Prosperity. We will see how the Republican presidential candidates react. Newt Gingrich faced the first major setback of his campaign when he denounced the Ryan plan for entitlements as "right-wing social engineering."
5. The Republican presidential candidates have collectively lagged President Barack Obama in fundraising during the 2012 election cycle. But this is no longer true for a subset of donations. Romney is now leading among high-dollar donors -- those giving more than $2,000 at a clip -- leaving some Democratic bundlers worried about complacency and others readying press releases about the "99 percent," presumably to be issued whenever the "Republican War on Women" comes to a peaceful conclusion.
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