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Mitt Romney Beats Rick Santorum by 8 Votes

Posted on Jan 3, 2012
AP / Charlie Riedel

Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum, who had a late surge in the polls, shows off his mug on caucus day in Iowa.

11:34 p.m. Pacific: The Republicans of Iowa just settled it: Mitt Romney wins, beating Rick Santorum by a mere eight votes, the smallest margin ever in the caucuses.

The victory gives Romney huge momentum. He is off to New Hampshire, where he leads by an insurmountable margin, to receive an endorsement from the last GOP nominee, Sen. John McCain. Romney paid dearly for the win, as he and so-called super PACs on his behalf poured millions into Iowa, but the gory details of victory are soon forgotten and in seven days Mitt Romney is likely to deliver his second celebratory speech in as many weeks.


9:04 p.m. Pacific: Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum are separated by a razor-thin margin. Meanwhile, Rick Perry is headed back to Texas to reassess after a disappointing finish.

Newt Gingrich vowed to press on to New Hampshire, but not before congratulating Santorum on a “positive” campaign and slamming Romney for embracing attack ads. Ron Paul seemed pleased with his third-place result, even though many thought he might win the contest. Michele Bachmann can’t seem to decide whether she wants to keep running or not.

We’re going to stay up all night to see if Jon Huntsman can break into the 800s. Right now he has just 702 votes.

7:59 p.m. Pacific: With Ron Paul, Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney in a near tie for much of the night, it has now turned into a two-man race with Romney and Santorum fighting for every vote.

7:46 p.m. Pacific: Mitt Romney has pulled into a small lead at 25 percent, followed by Rick Santorum at 24 percent and Ron Paul, who slipped to 21 percent.

6:59 p.m. Pacific: The latest batch of numbers show Ron Paul dropping to third place just behind Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney, who are tied at 24 percent. The Iowa GOP website shows 31 counties not yet reporting.

6:46 p.m. Pacific: The Iowa GOP still has this as a three-way tie among Paul, Romney and Santorum, but CNN reports Romney now commands a gigantic 1 point lead.

6:30 p.m. Pacific: As of this posting, Ron Paul has dropped a point and it’s a three-way tie with Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum at 23 percent each.

6:15 p.m. Pacific: Early results and CNN entrance polls have Ron Paul in the lead with 24 percent of the vote, followed by Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum tying for second place at 23 percent. Looks like it’s going to be a close one.

5 p.m. Pacific: Right now Republicans and other crossover voters are gathering in rooms across Iowa to make the state’s Republican choice for president. You can track the results on Iowa’s GOP page here and of course we’ll let you know who won just as soon as we find out.

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Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, January 7, 2012 at 9:27 pm Link to this comment

EmileZ—I am the elite.  At least, a sort of second-tier elite, with respect to HTML 4.1, anyway.  Maybe.

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EmileZ's avatar

By EmileZ, January 7, 2012 at 8:24 pm Link to this comment

@ Anarcissie

Your linking techniques smack of elitism.

Of course you couldn’t possibly realize this.

(thanks for playing along, if indeed you were)

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blogdog's avatar

By blogdog, January 4, 2012 at 6:00 pm Link to this comment

RE: May the most billions win!—many jokes alla Iowa, who-owa, what- owa, where-owa, etc. ...but, a nice little chunk of those ‘billions’ just got dropped in Iowa - after Homeland and the MIC, the US Elections Industry is perhaps the most lucrative - 18 months touring campaign crews and loads of paid PR - any state not in this game is missing the boat

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Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, January 4, 2012 at 3:29 pm Link to this comment

What kind of link is a normal link?  I just did the usual a href stuff.

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Payson's avatar

By Payson, January 4, 2012 at 11:25 am Link to this comment

Are there any people who take the media coverage of this race seriously?  Anyone
who doesn’t make a living as a pundit?

So Romney beats Santorum by 8 votes, essentially maintaining his position that he
has paid for with his millions, but Santorum is painted as a come-from-
behind(how fitting) success story.  Regardless of the margin, he lost.  Losing to
Romney by any number of votes in a conservative Republican beauty pageant
doesn’t make Santorum the next president.
It seems that the losers get more coverage than the winner.  Except, that is, Ron
Paul.  This whole thing is ratings-driven spectacle, not an illustration of
democracy at its best.  The candidate with the most money wins.  Have fun
watching the condemned duke it out in the forum, but buckle your seat belts for
Obama vs. Romney.  May the most billions win!

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By SoTexGuy, January 4, 2012 at 11:21 am Link to this comment

One story I read at the LA Times included a map of reporting counties with each color coded by which candidate had won there..

By that map, Ron Paul almost swept the state..  apparently he did less well in the places where the population is concentrated?

Interesting stuff that even in Iowa, the townies and the people out on the land don’t agree all that much.


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EmileZ's avatar

By EmileZ, January 4, 2012 at 10:34 am Link to this comment

@ Anarcissie

I’m a real stickler, but I just want to let you know that it is okay that you didn’t post a normal link like I would of and instead had that “Matt Taibbi” in red thing.

I don’t have much of a problem with that and the article wasn’t all that objectionable either.

Hell, it was good I suppose.

How about those Iowa caucus results???

Pretty dramatic, huh??? ... who would of thought…

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Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, January 4, 2012 at 8:53 am Link to this comment

I like Taibbi’s take on it.

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EmileZ's avatar

By EmileZ, January 4, 2012 at 7:43 am Link to this comment

Oh, and by the way Mr. Scheer, I heard Robert Reich and Thom Hartmann on the radio yesterday (nothing Thom Hartmann does suprises me anymore since he came out in favor of Obama’s extension of the Bush Tax cuts a little over a year ago with the iffy social security payroll tax cuts as well), anyhow Thom Hartmann and Robert Reich were yukking it up about how wonderful it might be if Hillary Clinton was on Obama’s ticket this year as vice president.

I dunno, can Reich just not resist the temptation to be on ANYONE’S show, and speak at ANY EVENT including OCCUPY OAKLAND and modifies his rhetoric accordingly???

Is the man in fact the little weasel he at times reveals himself to be???

Or am I just tripping???

These are things all of us who try to take your columns seriously need to ponder.

Tough stuff (that’s what EmileZ is made of), how far are you willing to go Mr. Scheer???

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By John Sullivan, January 4, 2012 at 7:36 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Wow! The media actually wants us to believe the election hasn’t already been decided by the people bankrolling it

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By jones, January 4, 2012 at 7:28 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

These aren’t primaries, this is the media subsidizing a massive Republican focus group survey, and giving the Republican right wing a shit ton of free publicity.  It’s a trap.  Half these candidates are Pat Buchanan knockoffs.  This is a hate fest.

If the Republican party just picked a candidate to endorse, the party faithful would fall in line and back that candidate energetically, whether it was Romney or Paul.  It’s only a pretense that these primaries are about “letting the voters choose the best candidate.”

It wasn’t too long ago that Donald Trump stated, “I’m on the conservative side, but Buchanan is Attila the Hun.”  After Buchanan’s “Culture Wars” speech Molly Ivins quipped that it “sounded better in the original German.”

In 2000, Pat Buchanan picked up 0.4% of the primary votes.  In less polarized times, Ross Perot picked up 19% in a federal election.  In Nader’s 1992 write-in campaign, more Republicans than Democrats voted for him.

It’s only technically correct to say that the Republican party has “moved to the right.”  It’s perhaps more accurate to say it’s been PUSHED in that direction.

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EmileZ's avatar

By EmileZ, January 4, 2012 at 7:00 am Link to this comment

I just had the pleasure or listening to Santorum’s great “economics speech” which was basically advocating a race to the bottom. We have to deregulate in order to compete with all the countries we have shitty trade deals with, but not change the trade deals.

There was a recent article on this site about the importance of policy specifics in political speeches. Well, in my opinion, there is also a lack of scrutiny in the corporate media of the policy speeches that are taken seriously.

Everyone is now going to be spouting shit about Santorum talking about the “revitalization of the manufacturing section”, and since the corporate democrat incumbent is not addressing trade issues honestly, it will pass, at least until Santorum’s support inevitably collapses, at which point it will be forgotten.

It is the media stupid!!!

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BrooklynDame's avatar

By BrooklynDame, January 4, 2012 at 6:16 am Link to this comment

Even though he was in first place *giggle*, it still appears the anyone but Romney
crowd is speaking up…but Santorum?  Really?

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Outraged's avatar

By Outraged, January 4, 2012 at 1:35 am Link to this comment


Still, somewhat of a statistical tie, I mean even for
Paul. Let’s see if the Paulie’s can upset the apple
cart in NH.

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blogdog's avatar

By blogdog, January 4, 2012 at 12:52 am Link to this comment

circus rolls on - as previously prognosticated, by the end of March:
Betrayus vs Obomber; i.e. GHWB- Neocon faction vs Z-Big-Rockefeller faction

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