The former Pennsylvania senator has inspired a passion in voters that the ex-Massachusetts governor can’t seem to replicate. But Romney’s operation and finances are unrivaled.

Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum face a daunting calendar in the months ahead: a set of far-flung primaries that offers little chance for a knockout punch as they battle for the 1,144 delegates needed to clinch the GOP presidential nomination.

In that long slog, little will matter more than an efficient organization and a robust treasury. And in those key areas, the contrast between the two leading GOP contenders could not be more stark.

Romney has built an operation unrivaled in its vigilance and precision, which has allowed him to raise more money, reach more voters and rack up more delegates than any other candidate. Santorum has reveled in his paper-clip-and-baling-wire effort — relying on grass-roots supporters and low-dollar donors to propel his campaign.

The contrast was especially apparent on election night Tuesday as results rolled in from 10 states. While the Romneys were whisked home to suburban Belmont, Mass., for a quick dinner — chicken marsala prepared by their eldest son and his wife — supporters fanned out on plush couches and at cocktail tables adjacent to a chandeliered ballroom in Boston’s Westin Copley Square hotel. High-dollar donors mingled in the suites upstairs.

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