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Local voters give nod to Santorum
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Mitt Romney was looking to strengthen his bid for the GOP presidential nomination in yesterday’s Super Tuesday showdown, but he didn’t do it in Warren County.
Romney was the Republican frontrunner entering the day, but was pounded in local voting.
Rick Santorum emerged as the winner in Warren County with 1,208 votes. Newt Gingrich grabbed second place with 689 votes and Romney was third with 680. Ron Paul was a distant fourth with 246.
The numbers were similar throughout the state as Santorum has won Tennessee’s Republican presidential primary with a platform of social and religious issues that resonated with the state’s conservative voters.
With 91 percent of precincts reporting, Santorum, a former Pennsylvania senator, had 37 percent, compared with 28 percent for Romney. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich had 24 percent.
Romney was leading in just three of the state’s 95 counties at press time last night — Davidson, Loudon and Williamson — while Gingrich carried only Marion County.
Tennessee was part of a Super Tuesday showdown that featured races in 10 states with more than 400 delegates at stake – by far the busiest day of the campaign for the Republican presidential nomination.
In addition to Tennessee, there were primaries in Ohio, Georgia, Oklahoma, Vermont, Massachusetts, and Virginia, where Romney and Paul were the only two on the ballot after Santorum and Gingrich both failed to qualified.
There were caucuses in North Dakota, Idaho and Alaska.
Romney led in the delegate hunt as polls opened yesterday. He had 203 in The Associated Press count, while Santorum had 92, Gingrich 33 and Paul 25. It takes 1,144 to win the nomination at the Republican National Convention in August.