- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 8, 2012

Rick Santorum may have won more primaries but the Republican National Committee’s current delegate count shows former House Speaker Newt Gingrich has more bound delegates than Mr. Santorum in the race for the party’s presidential nomination.

Frontrunner Mitt Romney has earned 339 delegates to the August nominating convention in Tampa, Fla., or more than the rest of the field combined, according to a chart the RNC sent to its members on Thursday.

Mr. Gingrich is second with 107 delegates, topping Mr. Santorum’s 95 delegates and the 22 delegates pledged to Rep. Ron Paul of Texas.

Winning the nomination will take 1,144 delegates.

Press reports have put Mr. Santorum in second place based on projections about how delegates will be allocated in some of the caucus states where voters have cast their ballots, but where the actual delegates won’t be decided until later, at county, district and state conventions.

Delegates have yet to be fully awarded in Iowa, Colorado, North Dakota, Minnesota, Maine and Washington. Mr. Santorum won the first four of those contests, while Mr. Romney won the other two.

Mr. Santorum and Mr. Gingrich are battling to be the conservative alternative to Mr. Romney in the race, and Mr. Santorum says his victories in seven primaries and caucuses gives him a leg up.

Mr. Gingrich, meanwhile, has won just two primaries — Georgia and South Carolina. But both those states bind most of their delegates to support the Primary winner.

Meanwhile, Mr. Santorum has notched close wins in places such as Oklahoma, where he collected 14 delegates for his victory. But the Sooner State awards its delegates proportionately and so Mr. Romney and Mr. Gingrich earned 13 delegates each, meaning Mr. Santorum’s victory gains him almost no ground on his rivals.