Rick Santorum picked up some more states and delegates at the end of the week. He is a strong second place runner to Mitt Romney’s somewhat weak number one spot in these primary races. But does Rick’s modest success matter? I must share with you the thoughts of Fox News commentator Dick Morris who I met yesterday.

Anyone who has read my Romney pieces would guess that I am not a Romney supporter but it seems that barely enough GOP primary voters disagree with me to make Mitt the obvious frontrunner. Despite his ups and downs and despite the fact that he just can’t seal the deal convincingly, Romney is ahead in the delegate count, has more primary/caucus wins than the others, and seems to have taken enough overall wins that his opponents won’t be able to catch up.

This leaves only one hope for his two main opponents, Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich: a brokered convention. A brokered convention may be good for Rick and/or Newt but would it be good for the GOP?

I met Dick Morris this weekend at a Chicago political event and his firm analysis is that a brokered convention would mean we’d lose this election to Obama no matter which of the three we end up with.

First of all, let’s face the facts that Newt has no chance. Neither does Ron Paul. Neither of these two have any path to the nomination outside a brokered convention. And due to their weak positions now, they won’t likely have the juice to win a brokered decision, either.

Of the second tier candidates only Santorum has a shot to upset Romney, but only if Newt quits now and strongly urges his voters to go for Rick — a situation that doesn’t seem likely.

Yet, as things stand right now there is still a very, very strong anti-Romney constituency out there. Voters that lean conservative and very conservative simply cannot stomach the moderate Governor of Massachusetts. Romney is no conservative and these voters know it and resent having him foisted on them by the liberal-leaning GOP establishment (whoever that “establishment” may be).

So, many people are talking about going to the convention without a settled nominee and only once there having the final decision made. Dick Morris says this is a recipe for electoral disaster.

At the Chicago fundraiser for candidate William J. Kelly, Morris reminded us that the last four conventions that did not have a clear nominee at the outset ended up in that party losing the election. He recounted the loss Adlai Stevenson suffered after a brokered Democrat convention in 1952, the GOP disaster that was the 1964 pick of Barry Goldwater, the messy Democrat meltdown that was George McGovern in 1972, and the internecine fight that saw Jerry Ford beat down insurgent Ronald Reagan in 1976 for the GOP.

All these convention uproars saw the defeat of the candidate finally picked. Morris says that the reason for this is two fold. First the vicious, public fight and the weakness they portrayed as not being able to surge ahead as the obvious leader was harmful to the candidates. Secondly, the amount of campaign time lost to the winning candidate who had far less time to attack his opponent from the other party was costly.

Morris also noted that this year the GOP convention isn’t until the end of August and if the GOP candidate can’t start campaigning against Obama until then, that will give him only a few short months to do so. This would hurt whichever candidate emerges for the GOP.

All this, Morris said, makes him come to the support of Mitt Romney, “the only one that can win this nomination.”

Morris also told us that he is not a big fan of Romney and felt both Newt and Rick were fine candidates. So, he told us he didn’t have a dog in the fight necessarily. He just felt that Romney is the only one that could win if people stop bothering with support for the others. And he was worried that continued opposition to Romney is now to the point where it will cost the Republicans the election in November.

Much as I hate the idea, Morris has made a compelling argument.