NEW HAMPSHIRE PRIMARY HQ UPDATE: Romney Wins; Ron Paul Second; Huntsman Third; Gingrich, Santorum Fight for Fourth Place
Posted on | January 10, 2012 | 79 Comments
UPDATE 10:30 p.m. ET: Rick Santorum concluded his speech here by shouting, “On to South Carolina!” Indeed. But first, I’ve got a deadline for The American Spectator, and then there are friends awaiting my arrival at the bar at the Radisson Hotel.
After that, I’ve got a 12:30 p.m. Wednesday flight out of Boston’s Logan Airport, going home for a couple of days to see my wife and kids, rest up and eat home cooking. Hit the freaking tip jar!
UPDATE 9:43 p.m. ET: In a press gaggle just now, Rick Santorum campaign manager said they are prepared to spend $1 million for TV and radio advertising in South Carolina. They are also about to announce the addition of paid staff in Florida.
With 56% of precincts reporting, Santorum just moved ahead of Newt Gingrich for 4th place.
UPDATE 9:35 p.m. ET: Jon Huntsman: “Third place is a ticket to ride! … We got it done!” He talks about doing it “the old-fashioned way,” i.e. spending Daddy’s money. No campaign is going to be more damaged than Huntsman’s by the release this weekend of the FEC reports for the fourth quarter of 2011. And yet he’s going to go on to chew up more TV debate time and collect some percentage of the vote in South Carolina and Florida.
UPDATE 9:30 p.m. ET: We’re going to have to wait for Jon Huntsman to give his third-place “victory” speech before Rick Santorum speaks here. Journalists are finding ways to fill their time:
Reporters compulsively check their Twitter feeds on their 4G phones. The lady in the black-and-white coat is Shushana Walshe of ABC News.
Danny Yadron of the Wall Street Journal interviews Santorum supporters.
UPDATE 9:14 p.m. ET: Results with 39% of precincts reporting:
Mitt Romney ….. 27,980 (37%)
Ron Paul ………… 17,953 (24%)
Jon Huntsman … 12,797 (17%)
Newt Gingrich …. 7,576 (11%)
Rick Santorum …. 7,522 (11%)
Rick Perry ………… 551 (1%)
Buddy Roemer ……… 292 (0%)
Michele Bachmann ….. 105 (0%)
Herman Cain ………. 57 (0%)
The margin between Gingrich and Santorum is less than the vote for Herman Cain, who quit the race more than a month ago.
UPDATE 9:03 p.m. ET: Ron Paul in his speech: “I want to thank the Union Leader for not endorsing me” — a shot at Newt Gingrich.
UPDATE 8:57 p.m. ET: Associated Press headline:
We expect Rick Santorum’s speech here within 10 minutes.
UPDATE 8:40 p.m. ET: At 8:26 p.m., Romney pre-empted all his rivals’ concession speeches by giving one of the earliest victory speeches I can recall. He took a shot at Gingrich and Perry — unnamed “desperate Republicans” — and slammed Obama repeatedly. We are still awaiting the arrival of Rick Santorum here at his primary night celebration. He’s within 70 votes of Gingrich for fourth place with 23% of precincts reporting.
Santorum supporters sport their $100 sweater vests.
UPDATE 8:10 p.m. ET: Results updating fast and furious now. With 11% of precincts reporting:
Mitt Romney ….. 8,856, (36%)
Ron Paul ………… 6,126 (25%)
Jon Huntsman … 4,207 (17%)
Newt Gingrich …. 2,658 (11%)
Rick Santorum …. 2,419 (10%)
Rick Perry ………… 167 (1%)
Buddy Roemer ……… 108 (0%)
UPDATE 8:25 p.m. ET: Da Tech Guy is here doing his own coverage. CNN just declared Romney the winner — obviously — and is interviewing Jon Huntsman, who’s running a weak third in the state where he’s been campaigning non-stop for six months. Ron Paul is running a strong second. Roxeanne de Luca just showed up to vex me. Bryan Preston of PJ Tatler fame is here, and we’re thinking of making a run to Romneyland later this evening.
** PREVIOUSLY (6:58 p.m. ET) **
Television network satellite trucks parked outside
Rick Santorum primary night party, Manchester, N.H.
We are here at the Derryfield Restaurant for the Rick Santorum
Victory Maybe Fourth Place Celebration and, conveniently enough, the Media Filing Center is located right next to the bar. It’s gonna take a lot of beverages for me to be able to avoid profound depression — and perhaps an episode of “arctic hysteria” — when the votes come rolling in tonight.
Mitt Romney, the sadistic RINO flipflopper who gets his jollies by firing guys like me, is the overwhelming favorite to win here, with The Ron Paul Survival Newsletter a distant second. According to the liberal media, however, the “Hunstman Surge” might challenge Paul’s hold on second place, which would mean that the best Rick Santorum can do is to beat Newt Gingrich for fifth place.
Polls close at 8 p.m. ET, but I figure I’d better start drinking early, if I hope to withstand my Greenlandic Innuit urge to go running around naked.
The National Affairs Desk, 6:30 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2012
The polling showed undeclared voters made up a significant 44 percent of voters in the Granite State on Tuesday — that’s nearly twice the number of independents that showed up in Iowa last week. In that group, 30 percent said they were supporting Romney, while 29 percent were supporting Ron Paul and 27 percent were supporting Jon Huntsman.
Among late deciders, the line-up was slightly different. The exit polls showed 29 percent breaking for Romney, while 24 percent were backing Huntsman and 20 percent were backing Rick Santorum, who finished second in the Iowa caucuses.
Hmmm. If “late deciders” among independents are breaking slightly toward Santorum, does that mean that he’s locked down fourth place and Newt Gingrich will finish no better than fifth here?
UPDATE II: Linked at Fire Andrew Mitchell and by Bob Belvedere at Camp of the Saints — thanks! Meanwhile, although Ed Morrissey is right here in Santorum HQ, Allahpundit has the big “election results open thread” at Hot Air, this being The Squishy Night of RINO Joy.