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Can Mitt Romney connect with conservatives? That’s the big question that’s dogged his campaign since it started. And it’s a question The New York Times asks today. We’ll start to get some answers when Romney speaks at the C-PAC convention this afternoon.

 

The big star of the C-PAC show is Rick Santorum. He’s got all the momentum now – and he’s getting rock-star treatment. He’s also relegating Newt Gingrich to yesterday’s news.

 

David Brooks writes about how Romney tried to please everybody but ended up pleasing few.

 

The Times also reports that Roman Catholic leaders mobilized months ago, bracing for a fight with the Obama administration over the rule requiring religious institutions to pay for birth control for their employees. And Politico writes that Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York has the president in checkmate. Meanwhile, the administration may have a face-saving compromise in the works, and it could come as early as today. But will it go far enough to please the bishops? Not likely. This is a huge political fight the administration should have seen coming, and if they can’t find a way out of it soon, it could cost them.

 

Also tonight on Hardball, a terrific interview with actor James Cromwell of The Artist about how that mostly silent movie mirrors the time and era we’re living in today.

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