The polls have closed in South Carolina and Fox News has called the primary for Newt Gingrich. The late Newt Gingrich surge takes the Palmetto state of South Carolina. So now each candidate has won one primary/caucus. Onward to Florida.
The South Carolina by county vote can be seen here.
Newt Gingrich will defeat Mitt Romney to win today’s South Carolina primary, according to ABC News projections based on exit poll data.
Ron Paul and Rick Santorum were battling for third place.
According to exit polls, two-thirds of South Carolinian’s said that the debates matter and that the Newt affair or “open marriage” accusation from Gingrich’s ex-wife did not. However, what should matter to GOP primary voters is why Newt Gingrich left office amid his ethics scandal. Mark my words, this will come out in the general election if Newt wins the GOP nomination and we best know up front why he left rather than face an October surprise.
Fox News calling Santorum will be third and Ron Paul a distant fourth.
As the GOP candidates head into Florida the RCP average polls are as follows: Romney 40.5%, Gingrich 22.0%, Santorum 15.0& and Paul 9.0%.
UPDATE I: Final South Carolina primary results:
Gingrich: 40.4% 243,153
Romney: 27.8% 167,279
Santorum: 17.0% 102,055
Paul: 13.0% 77,993
Cain: 1.1% 6,324
Perry: 0.4% 2,494
Huntsman: 0.2% 1,161
Bachmann: 0.1% 494