Well, somebody somewhere loves some Newt Gingrich. South Carolina has proven to be the first state to openly show it.
Newt Gingrich won the South Carolina primary race on Saturday with an astounding 40 percent of the GOP vote. He beat Mitt Romney, who placed second with a 28 percent showing. Rick Santorum and Ron Paul came in third and fourth respectively with 17 and 13 percent of the vote.
In short, Newt was rewarded for ignoring New Hampshire and heading straight to South Carolina to campaign after the Iowa caucuses. He surged ahead of Romney in the polls leading up to Saturday’s contest. Romney and his robotic style and wealth (that people strangely seem to hate) just cannot connect with voters.
The South Carolina vote shows a few different ways this race is turning for Republicans. Here are a few:
- Newt is finding his voice among Southern Republicans. He is from Georgia after all. This will be more important as the candidates head into Florida on January 31.
- The issue of Newt’s marital infidelity didn’t have time to stick with SC voters. We’ll have to wait and see how it plays out in FL. The issue is definitely not over, especially since he looks hypocritical for playing it up with Bill Clinton in the 1990′s.
- Now Santorum, Romney, and Gingrich each have one win per person in the contests so far. This means that an upcoming win in Florida could boost either three of the candidates.
- Ron Paul hasn’t won anything yet. He already told CNN on Saturday night that he plans to look at the caucuses beyond Florida, hinting that he doesn’t think he is going to win in the Sunshine State. He needs to go ahead and break away to run as a third-party candidate to split up the vote.
- Newt is already talking like he has won the entire GOP nomination and is facing President Obama head-to-head. He claims that he will challenge the president to seven three-hour debates on issues. Is Newt trying to make my fingers fall off? Damn..
So, for all our Florida readers .. BRACE YOURSELVES! The next 10 days are going to be hellish in your media markets as the GOP candidates try to spend their way to victory. I wouldn’t go near a TV or radio until February 1. Just a fair warning if you hate election commercials. lol..