Open thread: South Carolina; Update: Gingrich wins; Update: Full exit poll data added; Update: Romney video added; Update: Gingrich video added; Update: Jeb Bush staying neutral

posted at 6:00 pm on January 21, 2012 by Allahpundit

Polls close at 7 p.m. ET. If PPP and ARG are right, the race should be called at around 7:01. But maybe they’re not right: More than 22,000 absentee ballots were cast, many of them before Newt’s last-minute surge, so Romney might be stronger than he seems. On the other hand, reporters are chattering about Democrats in South Carolina voting for Newt in order to prolong the Romney/Gingrich war. Read pollster Mark Blumenthal on why trying to predict a race with lots of eleventh-hour developments is a fool’s errand.

Here’s Google’s page for South Carolina election returns. Assuming Newt wins, the margin obviously matters in shaping the pre-Florida spin. If it’s narrow, Romney will claim that Gingrich won only because SC is in his backyard. If it’s wide, you’ll hear the phrase “aura of inevitability shattered” roughly eight thousand times over the next few days. See Ed’s post this morning on why Romney probably isn’t worried, even if he ends up swamped tonight. He’s piling up absentee ballots in Florida, where he currently holds a huge lead, and rumors continue to fly about him rolling out Jeb Bush for the big endorsement at an opportune moment. And then there’s this:

After Florida, Gingrich’s outlook becomes even more bleak. The February calendar presents Romney with the opportunity to do to Gingrich what Barack Obama did to Hillary Clinton in 2008. Caucuses in Nevada, Colorado, and Minnesota will benefit a more organized campaign, giving Romney and Rep. Ron Paul a boost over Gingrich. The two primaries that month, in Arizona and Michigan, will take place on Romney-friendly turf; Arizona has a sizable Mormon electorate, while Michigan is Romney’s home state. By the end of February, Romney is likely to have the majority of the 274 delegates awarded to that point. Paul’s focus on caucus states means Gingrich may not even be in second place by the end of the month.

Then comes Super Tuesday, when 10 states will allocate a total of 407 delegates. With few debates left on the horizon, Gingrich won’t have the time, the exposure, or the money to build the type of national campaign Romney has already started to build (Gingrich isn’t even eligible for the 46 delegates from Virginia; his campaign didn’t submit enough valid signatures to make the ballot there).

In short, South Carolina presents Gingrich’s last real chance to be on equal footing with Romney before the race goes national. Barring a sustained surge in campaign contributions for Gingrich and a real stumble by Romney’s campaign, the reality is that the race for the Republican nod is as clear today as it was before Gingrich’s revitalization: There will be no extended fight for delegates a la Obama-Clinton, there will be no brokered convention, and Romney will be the Republican nominee. The deck is stacked too much in Romney’s favor to give Gingrich’s campaign anything more than a temporary reprieve.

Once Gingrich is formally crowned Not Romney tonight and becomes the last real obstacle to Mitt’s nomination, he shouldn’t have any trouble raising money for months to come. One of his advisors told Stephen Hayes, in fact, that Newt will be in it until the convention. I wouldn’t rule out a “real stumble” from Romney on the trail either. As effective as Gingrich has been this week, Romney has been terrible, hemming and hawing about his tax returns to feed the suspicion that he has something to hide and letting his campaign stupidly float the idea that he might back out of one of the Florida debates, which plays right into Newt’s message that he isn’t tough enough to handle Obama. He won’t implode in a flash the way Perry did with his answer on in-state tuition for illegals, but if he continues to look weak and untrustworthy he could bleed enough support to keep Gingrich going.

Here’s your thread to follow results; lots of updates to come, including a link to the exit polls as soon as they’re available. Ed will be on Hugh Hewitt’s show sometime between 7 and 9 p.m. ET to talk about the results, so be sure to tune into that too.

Update: The hard feelings begin before the vote ends:

Not to be outdone, Romney’s campaign later put out a statement celebrating the “15th anniversary” of the House decision to reprimand Gingrich for ethics violations, during his days as speaker. The Romney campaign plans to deliver an anniversary cake to Gingrich’s South Carolina headquarters to mark the occasion on Saturday.

Update: Behold, my friends, as Team Romney prepares the ultimate “You know who this benefits?” spin:

“I think we’re going to lose tonight, we could lose big,” the aide said, speaking on condition of anonymity. “But I think it’s been a terrible week for Gingrich and a great week for us.”

From the former Speaker’s demonization of Romney’s business record, to his decision to indignantly deflect criticism from his ex-wife, the aide said Gingrich has ensured that he won’t win the Republican nomination…

Of course, a loss is still a loss, and up until very recently, Romney and his surrogates had been predicting a first-place finish in the Palmetto State. Asked whether Romney’s collapse in the polls is forcing Romney’s campaign to consult its own mortality, the aide laughed.

“Oh God, no,” he said. “I mean, to face Newt Gingrich?”

Update: Here comes the exit poll data. You know who this doesn’t benefit?

Sixty-four percent said the debates were an important factor for them; just 34 percent said they were not. Gingrich won standing ovations in both debates while Romney often struggled – and at one point received a smattering of boos for equivocating over how many years of his tax returns he would release.

Gingrich, who polls suggest overtook Romney in the final days before today’s primary, is hoping for a victory that would keep Romney from locking up the nomination before the end of the month. A majority of voters – 53 percent – said they made up their mind about who to back within the last few days.

Forty-five percent say electability is most important. We’ll see how that breaks between Gingrich and Romney.

Update: Looks like it’ll be a short night: “Romney aides tell Fox News they expect a second place finish based on exit polls.”

Update: Nate Silver sends a chill through Team Romney by wondering whether he’s still ahead … in Florida:

Essentially all of the polling data used for the forecast, however, predates the Monday night debate in Myrtle Beach, since which time there has been a dramatic reversal of fortunes in the Republican race. Mr. Romney has lost 15 points from his lead nationwide, according to the Gallup national tracking poll. There has been an even larger swing – a net of about 21 points between Mr. Romney and Mr. Gingrich – in South Carolina.

If the Florida polls have swung as much as the national polls during the past several days, Mr. Romney would have only about a 5-point lead there now. And if the Florida polls have swung as much as the South Carolina ones have during the last week, Mr. Gingrich and Mr. Romney would now be essentially tied there.

The wider the margin tonight, the more buzz Newt will have and, presumably, the more momentum heading into Florida. (There’s another debate on Monday too, don’t forget.) Speaking of which, here’s the answer to the electability question I posed above about the exit poll data: Of the 45 percent who said beating Obama was most important, 49 percent said Gingrich was best positioned to do it compared to just 41 percent who said Romney. In South Carolina, Newt’s the electable candidate.

Update: A picture is worth a thousand words.

Update: All the nets are calling it for Gingrich promptly at 7 p.m. Stand by for exit poll data so that we’ll have some sense of the margin.

Update: Here’s the exit poll data. Newt wins, 38/29.

Update: The most amazing thing about the exit poll is how many different demographics Newt won. Romney led by double digits less than a week ago but couldn’t hold onto his advantage in virtually any group. Newt won men, women (sorry, Marianne), independents, marrieds, singles, veterans, non-veterans, and all income groups. He won on electability and on the economy and on the deficit. He won among voters who decided today and within the last few days, and tied Romney among those who decided earlier this month. (A rare win for Romney came among those who decided before that.) He even won among those who approve of Nikki Haley’s job performance as governor, notwithstanding her endorsement of Mitt.

As for Bain, here was the response when voters were asked their view of Romney’s background of investing in and restructuring companies:

Most think positively of Romney’s career, but Mitt beats Newt within that group fairly narrowly. Among the minority who view Romney’s career negatively, Gingrich crushes Romney. Could be that the Bain attacks didn’t matter much to most voters, but to the voters who cared, they mattered a lot.

Even though Newt topped Mitt on nearly all the issues, I think this’ll be the media spin tomorrow: “Romney lost on the basis of two debates. Welcome to U.S. of American Idol”.

Update: For what it’s worth, here’s the Democratic reaction tonight via our old friend KP: “Getting ecstatic emails from my Dem operative friends re Newt.”

Update: A mind-boggling exit poll data point from John Dickerson. I guess that ABC interview with Newt’s ex didn’t work: “Gingrich got the same share of the evangelical vote in SC as Mike Huckabee in 2008. One of them is an ordained minister.”

Update: Two more tidbits from the exit poll. In case there was any doubt, yes, Gingrich killed Romney at the debates:

As for this, make of it what you will:

Update: One more and then I’ll stop. This doesn’t prove that the Bain attacks worked, but I’m not sure that’s a comfort to Mitt. If voters are starting to feel alienated by Romney’s wealth, whether because they think he doesn’t understand their problems or for other reasons, then Gingrich could become the “blue-collar candidate” by default and suddenly Mitt has a big problem:

Update: Team Mitt would have preferred to roll out the Jeb Bush endorsement closer to the Florida vote, but I guess they’re panicky about a “sinking Romney ship” narrative tomorrow. Three sources are telling CNN tonight that Jeb will in fact endorse Mitt sometime soon. Will that be enough, though, if Santorum drops out? Says PPP, “Florida Santorum voters prefer Newt over Mitt 58-32…his decision whether to stay in or not will have major implications”.

Update: Chris Cillizza of WaPo tweets that “Close Jeb Bush ally tells me that no Romney endorsement is in the works.” Jeb’s camp being coy, or is he getting cold feet about throwing in with Romney after tonight’s drubbing?

Update: Santorum’s speaking as I write this and Ed notes on Twitter that he’s using the past tense a lot. Him dropping out would be Romney’s worst nightmare, needless to say.

Update: Wouldn’t you know it, Nikki Haley couldn’t make it over to the Romney rally tonight. Sad.

Update: Here’s Mitt’s concession speech. The money line: “Our party cannot be led to victory by someone who also has never run a business, and never run a state… We cannot defeat [Obama] with a candidate who has joined in that very assault on free enterprise.”

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Update: At long last, more than three hours after the race was called for him, here’s Newt. Quote: “I articulate the deepest-felt values of the American people.”

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Update: Oh my. Did Jeb just head for the lifeboats on the S.S. Romney?

Jeb Bush, the popular former Florida governor, said he will “stay neutral” in the Republican presidential primary while warning his party’s candidates to leave the “circular firing squad” of their primary debates behind and start appealing to a broader audience of voters.

Bush’s remarks, in an exclusive interview today, come as the contest advances to Florida, where the Jan. 31 primary will take the race into its biggest and most diverse arena yet. The winner will be awarded all of the state’s 57 delegates…

The younger Bush described both Romney and Gingrich as “credible” candidates in a November contest with President Barack Obama. “I intend to help whoever wins the nomination,” the former governor said…

He also says Romney should disclose his income tax records during the Florida contest, calling Romney’s riches “a wonderful success story.”

Bush is going to spin this as having been his position all along but the rumors that he’d endorse Mitt have been circulating for weeks. (His dad endorsed Romney a few weeks ago, remember.) The fact that he’s declaring neutrality on the same night that Gingrich swamped Romney in South Carolina is a terrible signal for Mitt.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Comment pages: 1 2 3 32

So Nooty wins ?
Drink :O

burrata on January 21, 2012 at 6:02 PM

Get the wahmbulances on standby.

Kataklysmic on January 21, 2012 at 6:04 PM

while Michigan is Romney’s home state.

How many home states does this guy have. I thought the Caymans were his home state(s).

Vince on January 21, 2012 at 6:05 PM

Its going to be Romney in the end.

SC is being a jerk by voting for Gingrich who will win tonight.

thanks for nothing.

Drunk Report on January 21, 2012 at 6:05 PM

Hope Gingrich blows him out in SC and hope Romney blows out Gingrich in FL.

thphilli on January 21, 2012 at 6:05 PM

Newt’s surge in SC is primarily due to Palin’s “endorsement”. Like her or not, she’s the most influential force in conservative politics today. Why aren’t people coming out and just saying what is obvious.

Paul-Cincy on January 21, 2012 at 6:06 PM

If Mitt starts arguing that Newt only won SC because its “his own backyard”, won’t that just prompt reporters to ask Mitt the same question about his victory in NH?

Lawdawg86 on January 21, 2012 at 6:06 PM

Newt won’t cut it, sorry, he has too many negative and besides, his wife is creepy.

major dad on January 21, 2012 at 6:06 PM

darn, not much for drinking games tonight 7%

cmsinaz on January 21, 2012 at 6:06 PM

Won’t bode well for Dr. Paul if that’s the case.

Bmore on January 21, 2012 at 6:07 PM

A fun time will be had by some people here.

SlaveDog on January 21, 2012 at 6:07 PM

why do they have an open primary??????????

why?

cmsinaz on January 21, 2012 at 6:07 PM

Gingrich: ‘The GOP’s Captain Hazelwood of the Exxon Valdez’

http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2012/01/the_gops_captain_hazelwood_of_the_exxon_valdez.html#ixzz1k8Yi7CiZ

Pork-Chop on January 21, 2012 at 6:07 PM

I wonder who @ FOX will have an on air melt-down if Newt wins
( insert evil laughter —-> here)

burrata on January 21, 2012 at 6:07 PM

Newtron bomb about to go off in S.C. today.

First executive order once Newt’s president – Open a cabinet position on Adultery and hire a smokin-hot babe to run it. He swears he won’t cheat this time.

As for Mitt, he’ll head to Utah and go on a mission bicycling all through the states he lost as he begins his bid for 2016..

rgrovr on January 21, 2012 at 6:07 PM

Not to be outdone, Romney’s campaign later put out a statement celebrating the “15th anniversary” of the House decision to reprimand Gingrich for ethics violations, during his days as speaker. The Romney campaign plans to deliver an anniversary cake to Gingrich’s South Carolina headquarters to mark the occasion on Saturday.

Save the cake for Obama. I know the Romney campaign hates conservatives and all, but this is just childish. I hope you are reminded of this when you are sitting at home, Mitt, and you see a commercial against the republican presidential challenger, Newt Gingrich, using your stupid cake to score political points. I hope this election will finally be the political stake in your heart, Mitt, so we don’t have to deal with your squishiness in 2020.

RovesChins on January 21, 2012 at 6:08 PM

why do they have an open primary??????????

why?

cmsinaz on January 21, 2012 at 6:07 PM

Puzzling, isn’t it.

SlaveDog on January 21, 2012 at 6:08 PM

Don’t feel too bad, Allah. There’s still time to get a bite of Newton’s apple for yourself here. ;-D

cynccook on January 21, 2012 at 6:09 PM

cmsinaz on January 21, 2012 at 6:07 PM

Why are there open primary’s anywhere? At least it rained pretty good today.

Bmore on January 21, 2012 at 6:09 PM

Do the mittwit crying towels come premoistened?

tom daschle concerned on January 21, 2012 at 6:09 PM

Newt’s surge in SC is primarily due to Palin’s “endorsement”. Like her or not, she’s the most influential force in conservative politics today. Why aren’t people coming out and just saying what is obvious.

Paul-Cincy on January 21, 2012 at 6:06 PM

Fear and loathing….

idesign on January 21, 2012 at 6:10 PM

Hope Gingrich blows him out in SC and hope Romney blows out Gingrich in FL.

thphilli on January 21, 2012 at 6:05 PM

I hope Gingrich blows him out tonight, and that they tie in Florida. It would be nice if Republicans from the other 46 states had their voices heard too…

Brokered convention 2012! Democrats can’t plan their attacks and get their messaging straight if they don’t know who were going to nominate– but we sure know who they are nominating, and the Super PACs can hammer Obama all summer long!

Lawdawg86 on January 21, 2012 at 6:10 PM

SlaveDog on January 21, 2012 at 6:08 PM

yes

Bmore on January 21, 2012 at 6:09 PM

i just don’t get it…they are just asking to water down the true gop vote…

argghhh

cmsinaz on January 21, 2012 at 6:10 PM

Romney has been terrible, hemming and hawing about his tax returns

Romney isn’t a schemer; he’s more of an innocent, IMHO. He didn’t really think about his tax returns! And his answer showed it. To mangle a well-known saying, “Guile in others is invisible to the man who has none”. Romney is white bread. He expects the integrity and pure motives in others that he himself has.

Paul-Cincy on January 21, 2012 at 6:11 PM

Do the mittwit crying towels come premoistened?

tom daschle concerned on January 21, 2012 at 6:09 PM

They come with a tube of Bryl cream so that, despite the whining, the hair always looks fabulous.

RovesChins on January 21, 2012 at 6:11 PM

A cake????

I need to change my name to Brokered Convention Fan First.

I’ll take Jindal, Daniels, Ryan or whomever you point to randomly in a phone book. This field is embarrassing.

LawnGnomeFanFirst on January 21, 2012 at 6:11 PM

So I support Romney. Oh wait, no I really don’t. I’ve been brainwashed by “the establishment”. I can’t think for myself.

Robb on January 21, 2012 at 6:11 PM

darn, not much for drinking games tonight 7%

cmsinaz on January 21, 2012 at 6:06 PM

How about everytime someone mentions ethics violations or adultry, you take a drink?

Vince on January 21, 2012 at 6:11 PM

Keep yuckin’ it up, Mitt.

Did I hear a toilet flush?

Dack Thrombosis on January 21, 2012 at 6:11 PM

Florida

Romney +18.5

rubberneck on January 21, 2012 at 6:11 PM

Thank you, John King, for your question.

turfmann on January 21, 2012 at 6:12 PM

Newt’s surge in SC is primarily due to Palin’s “endorsement”. Like her or not, she’s the most influential force in conservative politics today. Why aren’t people coming out and just saying what is obvious.

Paul-Cincy on January 21, 2012 at 6:06 PM

Because it’s not true.

You-Eh-Vee on January 21, 2012 at 6:12 PM

Did not know we are trying to select someone for the debating team.

galtani on January 21, 2012 at 6:12 PM

Vince on January 21, 2012 at 6:11 PM

cheers

*clink*

cmsinaz on January 21, 2012 at 6:13 PM

Ed will be on Hugh Hewitt’s show sometime between 7 and 9 p.m. ET to talk about the results

You know who this helps…

Valiant on January 21, 2012 at 6:13 PM

Florida

Romney +18.5

rubberneck on January 21, 2012 at 6:11 PM

Yeah, Mitt was up big time in SC too, but it doesn’t look good for him, rubber head.

RovesChins on January 21, 2012 at 6:13 PM

Romney is white bread. He expects the integrity and pure motives in others that he himself has.

Paul-Cincy on January 21, 2012 at 6:11 PM

Now that makes him the perfect candidate to deal with jihadies !!

burrata on January 21, 2012 at 6:13 PM

darn, not much for drinking games tonight 7%

cmsinaz on January 21, 2012 at 6:06 PM

Every time you see “%” tonight…

… Please join my in a drinky poo!

:)

Seven Percent Solution on January 21, 2012 at 6:14 PM

“romney aides say the expect asecond place finish” a phrase that will come in handy if he gets the nomination

rik on January 21, 2012 at 6:14 PM

Old and busted: Romney sweeps every primary

New hotness: Romney loses both Iowa and SC

Good Solid B-Plus on January 21, 2012 at 6:14 PM

Newt’s team better watch out tonight, I heard Romney staffers hit up the Walgreens for some toilet paper earlier…

LawnGnomeFanFirst on January 21, 2012 at 6:15 PM

Seven Percent Solution on January 21, 2012 at 6:14 PM

*clink*

:)

cmsinaz on January 21, 2012 at 6:15 PM

Because it’s not true.

You-Eh-Vee on January 21, 2012 at 6:12 PM

It is….

but Palin PDS sufferers will never admit it…:)

idesign on January 21, 2012 at 6:15 PM

Meh, I am so underwhelmed and disinterested in these candidates that I’ll be sitting on my hands and not doing fundraising, working the phones or pounding the pavement. I will vote, though. First time in 30+ years I won’t be doing mega-volunteer work…

OmahaConservative on January 21, 2012 at 6:15 PM

Go Newt!

Robert_Paulson on January 21, 2012 at 6:15 PM

Did not know we are trying to select someone for the debating team.

galtani on January 21, 2012 at 6:12 PM

We’re not voting for “Husband of the Year,” either, but Romney fans seem very interested in what Marianne Gingrich has to say.

Good Solid B-Plus on January 21, 2012 at 6:15 PM

If you are giving campaign dollars to Romney, how do you feel about your hard earned dollars going for a cake?

Why don’t establishment Republicans ever attack liberal Democrats like this?

Valiant on January 21, 2012 at 6:15 PM

Please join my in a drinky poo!

Seven Percent Solution on January 21, 2012 at 6:14 PM

…er, must we? :)

alwaysfiredup on January 21, 2012 at 6:16 PM

OmahaConservative on January 21, 2012 at 6:15 PM

you’re not alone OC

cmsinaz on January 21, 2012 at 6:16 PM

cmsinaz on January 21, 2012 at 6:10 PM

My take is it should be D’s in the D primary’s, R’s in the R primary’s, Sorry to the indies you vote in only one or the other, but which ever you vote in the primary’s, means that’s the one you can vote in in the general. You can’t have it both ways. Anyhow worth a quick peek, but remember to consider the source. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_primaries_in_the_United_States

Bmore on January 21, 2012 at 6:17 PM

Here’s Google’s page for South Carolina election returns.

Oooooooo! You’re gonna get in troooouuuuble. Don’t you see the Town Hall election results widget on the right of the screen? And here you are driving traffic to Google. Tsk tsk tsk.

Weight of Glory on January 21, 2012 at 6:17 PM

Willard has lost 2 Primaries….

He will be the nominee but he cannot connect with the voters

liberal4life on January 21, 2012 at 6:18 PM

Who wants squeaky clean Romney. I rather spend the election cycle defending Newt’s indescretions. Maybe if I have time I can add that he really didnt like sitting with Pelosi and John King just made it up. Republicans, you are cannibals. You eat yourselves. you can never win.

Robb on January 21, 2012 at 6:18 PM

but Romney fans seem very interested in what Marianne Gingrich has to say.

Good Solid B-Plus on January 21, 2012 at 6:15 PM

Seen the United Auto Workers connection ?
:D
http://m.nypost.com/p/news/national/marianne_sinner_SnQDWkm5bT2craFedhCY4J?CMP=OTC-rss&FEEDNAME=

burrata on January 21, 2012 at 6:19 PM

Seven Percent Solution on January 21, 2012 at 6:14 PM

Clink!, hey this is good,…. what is it ?

Bmore on January 21, 2012 at 6:19 PM

To the indies you vote in only one or the other, but which ever you vote in the primary’s, means that’s the one you can vote in in the general.

Bmore on January 21, 2012 at 6:17 PM

what does this mean? there’s only one general election. You mean if an Independent votes in a GOP primary they are somehow bound to vote for the GOP candidate in the general?

alwaysfiredup on January 21, 2012 at 6:19 PM

Florida

Romney +18.5

rubberneck on January 21, 2012 at 6:11 PM

1 week ago Romney was +15 in SC

liberal4life on January 21, 2012 at 6:20 PM

Romney isn’t a schemer; he’s more of an innocent, IMHO. He didn’t really think about his tax returns! And his answer showed it. To mangle a well-known saying, “Guile in others is invisible to the man who has none”. Romney is white bread. He expects the integrity and pure motives in others that he himself has.

Paul-Cincy on January 21, 2012 at 6:11 PM

He “didn’t think about his tax returns”? Are you kidding me? Mitt Romney has been running for President for six years, you really think he didn’t think about his tax returns? Did he think about them in the time between being asked about them on Monday and Thursday? As he given any more thought to the subject yet?

“He expects the integrity and pure motives in others that he himself has.” … … … So, Mitt Romney’s problem is that he is a naif? Yeah… let’s make that guy President … o_O

You are kidding yourself. There is something in those returns that Mitt would prefer not come out in the primaries, that’s the only logical reason for his evasiveness on the issue and his promise to release them in April; I’m guessing it has to do with his charitable donations.

Lawdawg86 on January 21, 2012 at 6:20 PM

Newt’s surge in SC is primarily due to Palin’s “endorsement”. Like her or not, she’s the most influential force in conservative politics today. Why aren’t people coming out and just saying what is obvious.

Paul-Cincy on January 21, 2012 at 6:06 PM

Some guy on Fox with Karl Rove and Chris Wallace just said that had some effect on Gingrich’s surge.

Flora Duh on January 21, 2012 at 6:20 PM

Bmore on January 21, 2012 at 6:17 PM

thanks

agree, if you’re an indie or unafiliated, you should not be allowed to vote in the primary, if you can’t be loyal to one party you shouldn’t be allowed to vote for the nominee…

cmsinaz on January 21, 2012 at 6:20 PM

Scary/depressing thought I had last night: I’d rather vote for McCain than for any of the candidates we have to choose from now.

butterflies and puppies on January 21, 2012 at 6:21 PM

Boils down to who you would want up against the one. Like him or not, Newt will kick his keester. He has my vote if it makes it to Alaska.

scookam on January 21, 2012 at 6:21 PM

liberal4life on January 21, 2012 at 6:18 PM

Got a new tune for you. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZcGj-CkC0gE listen all the way thru now little girl.

Bmore on January 21, 2012 at 6:21 PM

Seven Percent Solution on January 21, 2012 at 6:14 PM

I’m in…

OmahaConservative on January 21, 2012 at 6:22 PM

Why don’t establishment Republicans ever attack liberal Democrats like this?

Valiant on January 21, 2012 at 6:15 PM

Unfortunately we can expect Mitt to all politeness to Obama, I don’t think we’ll see him doing anything like this to The One.

neuquenguy on January 21, 2012 at 6:22 PM

Unfortunately we can expect Mitt to all politeness to Obama, I don’t think we’ll see him doing anything like this to The One.

neuquenguy on January 21, 2012 at 6:22 PM

mccain 2.0?

cmsinaz on January 21, 2012 at 6:22 PM

I demand to see Gingrich’s ethics violations report. Release them Newt!We need to know if you will be attacked. Oh no, we don’t need to know. You’re Newt, you take on the media. We prefer that to winning elections.

Robb on January 21, 2012 at 6:22 PM

Love the Mitt bashing by all those innocent,poor put upon ABR’s who scream with indignation at anyone who dares support not Newt. Really, just a breath of fresh air.

bluealice on January 21, 2012 at 6:22 PM

why do they have an open primary??????????

why?

cmsinaz on January 21, 2012 at 6:07 PM

I would have thot that all of these Open Primary States and Caucus States that had all of the fraud in 2008 would have made changes.

How any State that is Open Primary can call it a Republican Primary. What is the point? Just a way to stack the deck with other agendas & fraud in my opinion.

bluefox on January 21, 2012 at 6:23 PM

Brit Hume just said, “debates matter”. Sorry TRM, people tried to warn you and you poo pooed it.

Flora Duh on January 21, 2012 at 6:24 PM

alwaysfiredup on January 21, 2012 at 6:19 PM

Correct, why else would you have voted in such a manner in the primary, unless you wanted to create mischief for the general. Sorry indies you should have to make tough decisions up front like everyone else.

Bmore on January 21, 2012 at 6:24 PM

I feel all conflicted. Interesting thing from the exit polls is that Newt beat Romney in electability 49 to 41.

andy85719 on January 21, 2012 at 6:24 PM

If it’s narrow, Romney will claim that Gingrich won only because SC is in his backyard.

If he loses, the best response Romney can give would be to admit that he blew it in the debates because he couldn’t give an understandable answer to the demand for his taxes to be released early. He lost the initiative when he wasn’t prepared to smack Gingrich down for it. He should have learned his lesson and he didn’t. I wonder if he will by Monday night?

csdeven on January 21, 2012 at 6:25 PM

Here’s Google’s page for South Carolina election returns.
Oooooooo! You’re gonna get in troooouuuuble. Don’t you see the Town Hall election results widget on the right of the screen? And here you are driving traffic to Google. Tsk tsk tsk.

Weight of Glory on January 21, 2012 at 6:17 PM

Yeah, the widget is only an hour behind.

RovesChins on January 21, 2012 at 6:25 PM

I demand to see Gingrich’s ethics violations report. Release them Newt!We need to know if you will be attacked. Oh no, we don’t need to know. You’re Newt, you take on the media. We prefer that to winning elections.

Robb on January 21, 2012 at 6:22 PM

Read about it for yourself; it’s public record. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/politics/govt/leadership/ethics.htm

alwaysfiredup on January 21, 2012 at 6:25 PM

agree, if you’re an indie or unafiliated, you should not be allowed to vote in the primary, if you can’t be loyal to one party you shouldn’t be allowed to vote for the nominee…

cmsinaz on January 21, 2012 at 6:20 PM

I agree. But I also don’t remember everyone crying about ‘undeclared’ voters being allowed to participate in the NH primaries when Mitt cleaned house there. Face it, Iowa (where you can declare your party affiliation at the caucus), NH, and SC are all, in practice, open votes.

Lawdawg86 on January 21, 2012 at 6:26 PM

Love the Mitt bashing by all those innocent,poor put upon ABR’s who scream with indignation at anyone who dares support not Newt. Really, just a breath of fresh air.

bluealice on January 21, 2012 at 6:22 PM

Oh stuff it alice. You dish it out, don’t be surprised when it comes back at ya.

Flora Duh on January 21, 2012 at 6:26 PM

It will be interesting to see who the Democrats voted for in this S.C. Republican Primary.

bluefox on January 21, 2012 at 6:26 PM

Wait wait wait wait…our beloved Rush said that debates dont matter. That Bush never won against Kerry in those things. So no we can’t go against Rush here. Dont assume that cause Newt wins debates he’s the best candidate.

Robb on January 21, 2012 at 6:27 PM

Love the Mitt bashing by all those innocent,poor put upon ABR’s who scream with indignation at anyone who dares support not Newt. Really, just a breath of fresh air.

bluealice on January 21, 2012 at 6:22 PM

Actually, most of the crying comes from the Santorum corner, and what, with 75% of the republican voters not impressed with the hair, I expect a lot of squealing out of your corner tonight.

RovesChins on January 21, 2012 at 6:27 PM

Evening, scoreboard watchers. Just got done watching a couple of great college BB games. Kansas just squeaked past Texas, and Fla. St. upset Duke at Duke with a three-pointer at the buzzer.

Now I gotta go get some refreshments, and then return to join this fray. ;)

predator on January 21, 2012 at 6:27 PM

unless you wanted to create mischief for the general.

Bmore on January 21, 2012 at 6:24 PM

…or they really care about one candidate and if that candidate loses, they back a minor party.

It’s what I expect most Ron Paul fans to do: vote RP in the GOP primary and for the Libertarian candidate in the general. And that’s a perfectly rational way to vote. Libs might choose Kucinich in the Dem primary and the Green PArty candidate in the general. Also rational.

alwaysfiredup on January 21, 2012 at 6:28 PM

Newt’s winning because he bent over John King and has not been stupid for 2 days.

KOOLAID2 on January 21, 2012 at 6:28 PM

It will be interesting to see who the Democrats voted for in this S.C. Republican Primary.

bluefox on January 21, 2012 at 6:26 PM

According to exit polling, Ron Paul and Romney got the Independent and Democrat vote.

andy85719 on January 21, 2012 at 6:28 PM

Flora Duh on January 21, 2012 at 6:24 PM

Hey darlin’
Cindy Munford said you were golden, and if she says so I take her at her word, so I just wanted to call you darlin’ since I loves my conservative HA babes…
I haven’t been here as much as I used to be two or three years ago and am trying to figure out the newbies.

OmahaConservative on January 21, 2012 at 6:29 PM

Love the Mitt bashing by all those innocent,poor put upon ABR’s who scream with indignation at anyone who dares support not Newt.

bluealice on January 21, 2012 at 6:22 PM

Clearly you don’t come here often…

alwaysfiredup on January 21, 2012 at 6:29 PM

If he loses, the best response Romney can give would be to admit that he blew it in the debates because he couldn’t give an understandable answer to the demand for his taxes to be released early.

That might be a good place to start. I still found it amazing that team Romney had a more difficult time explaining the honorable pursuit of profit and wealth in America than Newt did with adultery. I’m still somewhat at a loss with where we’ve come.

Weight of Glory on January 21, 2012 at 6:29 PM

If it’s narrow, Romney will claim that Gingrich won only because SC is in his backyard.
If he loses, the best response Romney can give would be to admit that he blew it in the debates because he couldn’t give an understandable answer to the demand for his taxes to be released early. He lost the initiative when he wasn’t prepared to smack Gingrich down for it. He should have learned his lesson and he didn’t. I wonder if he will by Monday night?

csdeven on January 21, 2012 at 6:25 PM

That, and the fact that Romney didn’t get endorsed by the conservative king maker, Sarah Palin, could cost him Florida as well.

*Sits back with two fingers of good scotch and waits for the squealing to begin*

RovesChins on January 21, 2012 at 6:29 PM

Oh stuff it alice. You dish it out, don’t be surprised when it comes back at ya.

Flora Duh on January 21, 2012 at 6:26 PM

Get your facts right. I have never called anyone a name or talked rudely. You may have me confused with someone else. And “stuff it”?? Very nice.

bluealice on January 21, 2012 at 6:30 PM

alwaysfiredup on January 21, 2012 at 6:28 PM

That’s not my problem, it should be theirs though.

Bmore on January 21, 2012 at 6:31 PM

Romney wins the best hair contest

davemason2k on January 21, 2012 at 6:31 PM

Finally, revenge for Romney raising my taxes and making my Massachusetts health care prohibitively expensive. Lying socialist.

Typhonian on January 21, 2012 at 6:31 PM

Had Romney distributed his tax returns to the media and defended Bain more aggressively, he could have easily won SC.

andy85719 on January 21, 2012 at 6:31 PM

OmahaConservative on January 21, 2012 at 6:29 PM

Thanks OC, good to see you.

Flora Duh on January 21, 2012 at 6:31 PM

Hope someone checks on Horace and Bluegill after the results come in. They could be in deep despair.

PatrickHenry599 on January 21, 2012 at 6:31 PM

Good for Newt. Mitt is still the only candidate left in the race with a strong campaign organization who is electable though.

Roymunson on January 21, 2012 at 6:32 PM

Bmore on January 21, 2012 at 6:21 PM

Please just leave it in the basement with its bib.

KOOLAID2 on January 21, 2012 at 6:32 PM

I demand to see Gingrich’s ethics violations report. Release them Newt!We need to know if you will be attacked. Oh no, we don’t need to know. You’re Newt, you take on the media. We prefer that to winning elections.

Robb on January 21, 2012 at 6:22 PM

Aaaawwwww…

burrata on January 21, 2012 at 6:32 PM

Not to be outdone, Romney’s campaign later put out a statement celebrating the “15th anniversary” of the House decision to reprimand Gingrich for ethics violations, during his days as speaker. The Romney campaign plans to deliver an anniversary cake to Gingrich’s South Carolina headquarters to mark the occasion on Saturday.

Cheesy, and he thinks the voters will embrace this? Really? No wonder his is losing his lead, he thinks of voters as being fools, poor fools I am sure. I think it is fitting that he is delivery a cake, since one of the famous quotes is “let them eat cake”, from royalty…befitting of his “stature”…

right2bright on January 21, 2012 at 6:33 PM

OmahaConservative on January 21, 2012 at 6:29 PM

Hey, ol’ buddy. Miss Flora Duh is definitely one of us.

kingsjester on January 21, 2012 at 6:33 PM

Comment pages: 1 2 3 32