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|Iowa Caucus Results: Mitt Romney Edges Rick Santorum In Iowa by freepeople: 2:38pm On Jan 04, 2012|
Mitt Romney edged Rick Santorum by a mere eight votes in Tuesday’s Iowa caucuses — a margin that amounted to a tie in the crucial opening act of the 2012 presidential race and propelled the newly reshaped contest to New Hampshire and beyond.
After a three-way dead heat for much of the night, Romney and Santorum moved slightly ahead of Texas Rep. Ron Paul, who finished in third place.
The race-within-the-race between the two top contenders stretched until 2:30 a.m. Eastern. The final count, as reported by Iowa GOP Chairman Matt Strawn, showed Romney winning 30,015 votes to Santorum’s 30,007 — or 24.6 percent to 24.5 percent. Paul finished with 21.4 percent.
Newt Gingrich, Rick Perry and Michele Bachmann finished in the fourth, fifth and sixth slots — a result that prompted Perry to announce that he would return to Texas to decide whether he has a “path forward” in the race.
The tally — the first actual votes cast in the hotly contested GOP nomination fight — came after a final frenetic day of charges and counter-charges and strategic moves that give more clarity about the plot lines and main characters in the primary campaign’s next two chapters, in New Hampshire and South Carolina.
The 809 Iowa caucuses deliver no actual delegates — the state’s 25 delegates to the Republican convention will be awarded by a state convention in June. And while the Iowa tally will give significant momentum to the top of the leader board, the state’s quadrennial caucuses are an unreliable indicator of a party’s eventual nominee. While Barack Obama’s victory here in 2008 helped propel him to the presidency, eventual GOP standard-bearer John McCain finished an unimpressive fourth in the GOP contest.
Still, the spinning will be fierce to try to turn each candidate’s showing in Iowa — success or just bare survival — into a roadmap for triumphs in other states. Given the astonishing closeness of the race, both Romney and Santorum will earn bragging rights and take significant momentum to the contests down the road.
Romney, whose campaign had grown increasingly confident about a win or a very strong finish in a state that broke the former Massachusetts governor’s heart four years ago, called the result “a great victory for us” while also congratulating Santorum and Paul. “This is a campaign night when America wins,” Romney said.
But Romney’s campaign also tried to demonstrate its organizational and tactical advantages in the primaries to come. Romney aides announced that the campaign was going up with ads in Florida, which holds a Jan. 31 primary. A source also confirmed that Romney had purchased nearly $260,000 of TV airtime in South Carolina.
Santorum, whose campaign was viewed as all but hopeless just weeks ago, will have to prove that his Iowa-only strategy can quickly pivot to New Hampshire and beyond, where he has spent little time and put together little staff.
“Thank you so much, Iowa,” Santorum told a boisterous rally just past midnight. “By standing up and being bold and leading, leading with that burden and responsibility that you have to be first, you have taken the first step of taking back this country.”
Iowa Christian activist Bob Vander Plaats, one of Santorum’s prominent endorsers in the state, said that results showed it’s time for other conservative candidates to consider taking one for the team and rallying around the former Pennsylvania senator.
Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0112/71045.html
|Re: Iowa Caucus Results: Mitt Romney Edges Rick Santorum In Iowa by Lasinoh: 6:08am On Jan 05, 2012|
[size=20pt]Goooooooooooooooooooooo Romney!!!! [/size]
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