GOP Political Risk: Part Two
By Daniel Kay
Previously I compared areas of the Risk board to states on the US map being contested in the GOP race. However, the areas on the board are more comparable to the various voting blocs of the GOP. This is easily correct as the wins in each state correspond nicely to wins in particular voting blocs. North America I identified as Iowa but Huckabee’s win there represented a clear win over the Evangelical voting bloc. I compared New Hampshire to Europe which corresponds to McCain’s command over the foreign policy conservatives, independents and moderates of the party. Romney’s win in Michigan was identified as taking control of South America which represents a part of the Economic conservative wing of the party. I characterized Australia as a hide a wait strategy used by Giuliani but it also represents, like Michigan, another part of the economic wing of the party. South Carolina I previously underrepresented as a battle over Greenland but it was actually a battle over the North America/evangelical voting bloc which Thompson successfully assailed from Kamchatka strongly by Thompson while Romney moved in effectively from Peru and McCain defended against Huckabee’s main army in Greenland from moving into Iceland. So South Carolina was a battle over North America and the clear loser was Huckabee. Romney’s wins in Wyoming and Nevada were identified with wins in Africa territories which represent the core republicans of the party. He has not taken all of Africa yet. Thompson remains an annoying contender for this voting bloc. Thompson’s final armies in Africa are stationed in Madagascar waiting to capitulate to Romney the only other spectrum Republican still in the running. Asia represents the bandwagon republicans who will vote for whom ever is the most popular. Currently that is up in the air but has been in the hands of Giuliani for some time though they recently lost control of this region.
Time to review the game board as it lies with the major players:
McCain has solidified his control over Europe/Independent and moderate GOP voters. He conquers Europe divisively when he won New Hampshire but he has fortified and reinforced his control over this sector. He depleted the armies of Huckabee stationed in Greenland but was unable to move in and take any part of the Evangelical voting bloc. McCain also strengthened his armies in Australia ending Giuliani’s domination of the continent. The winner of Florida will need to win the out of control spending part of the economic conservative vote. McCain is on message and in a strong position to win.
Romney expended some of his armies working his way into Huckabee’s control over North America and was able to move into Central America. Romney expanded his control in Africa (i.e., core republicans) by a divisive win in Nevada receiving over 50% of the vote. He was also able to fortify his armies in South America (i.e., the economic conservative wing of the GOP). His control over South America has been put under scrutiny by the media it just depends on Giuliani’s ability to win Australia then expand through Africa to take South America from Romney (unlikely but possible). Romney has also strengthened his armies holdup in Australia and the battle between these three will take place over the next 8 days.
Huckabee is stuck in North America trying to take back lost territory, ~1/3 of the Evangelical vote he lost to each Romney and Thompson, so he can gain control of the continent again. Huckabee is completely isolated in North America and does not have the resources to battle Romney, Giuliani and McCain but his attempts are absolutely futile as he will never win the economic conservative (South America) or the moderate and foreign policy conservative (Europe) votes. He therefore, has only one move: attack Thompson to take as much of the evangelical vote back from him in the hope it is enough to allow him to move into Asia popular enough to compete on Super Tuesday (he must be dreaming).
Ron Paul is currently in the Middle East with a relatively large army but unlikely to do any damage to anyone but perhaps deplete some of McCain’s strength in Europe.
Thompson seems to still have some of the bandwagon support and core GOP support but does not have the means to stay in the game much longer.
***Up date: Thompson dropped out of the race and now it is question of who will fill the voided space on the board.***
Giuliani’s broad support in Asia (the popularity contest vote) has all but disappeared and he is in Australia ready for his final battle.
Game Board View: