Mitt Romney failed again to distance himself from his rivals with third-place finishes in Tuesday’s Alabama and Mississippi primaries, the latest sign he faces a perception problem among conservatives, NBC’s First Read Team reported. Wins in Hawaii and American Samoa helped Romney score the most delegates of the night (42 to Rick Santorum’s 38 and Newt Gingrich’s 24). But after losing to an under-financed and under-organized Santorum in the South, Romney is at risk of limping to the nomination as the race goes on. According to the First Read team, Romney’s campaign has focused on making the case that he’s the most electable candidate and that his nomination is inevitable. But “when you make your candidacy about electability and process, you’re going to pay a BIG price for losing to candidates,” according to First Read.