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Romney Wins Iowa, Bachmann Ends Presidential Bid

Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney campaigns during a town hall style meeting in Manchester, New Hampshire, January 4, 2012.
Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney campaigns during a town hall style meeting in Manchester, New Hampshire, January 4, 2012.

Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney is focusing his attention on New Hampshire, the next state to hold a nominating contest, after a narrow victory in Iowa.

Romney campaigned in New Hampshire Wednesday with Arizona Senator John McCain, who was the Republican Party presidential nominee in 2008. The New Hampshire primary is January 10.  Romney slammed President Barack Obama's approach to foreign policy and the economy and offered his own prescriptions.

"In Washington, what I will do is look at all of our programs, and I will ask for each one, 'Is this program so critical that it makes sense to borrow money from China to pay for it?'  And on that basis, we're going to get rid of a lot of programs and first on my list is ObamaCare.  It's gone on day one if I become president," he said.

McCain predicted Republicans will win the White House and Senate in the November elections.

 

 

Romney placed first among Republicans in Tuesday's Iowa caucuses, winning just eight votes more than social conservative Rick Santorum.  They each received 25 percent of the vote.  

Santorum's campaign got off to a slow start, but he pulled from behind in the polls in the month leading up to the Iowa caucuses.  He described his faith as the reason for his success in Iowa.

"Every morning when I was getting up in the morning to take on that challenge, I required a strength from another particular friendship, one that is sacred," said Santorum. "I've survived the challenges so far by the daily grace that comes from God."

The Iowa vote was the first nominating contest of the 2012 presidential campaign.  

Michele Bachmann, a congresswoman from Minnesota, withdrew after placing sixth among the Republicans.  

"Last night, the people of Iowa spoke with a very clear voice, and so I have decided to stand aside, and I believe that if we are going to repeal ObamaCare, turn our country around and take back our country, we must do so united.  And I believe that we must rally around the person that our country and our party and our people select to be that standard-bearer," she said.

Ron Paul, a Texas congressman and anti-war advocate, placed third with 21 percent, followed by Newt Gingrich, a former speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives.

Texas Governor Rick Perry vowed to continue his campaign, despite a fifth-place finish.  He told supporters in a tweet that he would campaign in South Carolina, ahead of that state's primary election January 21.

The Iowa caucuses can push weak contenders out of the race, and can help candidates who do better than expected to raise funds and continue their campaign.  

Former U.S. ambassador Jon Huntsman came in last with 1 percent.  Huntsman did not campaign in Iowa.  He is pinning his hopes on a good showing in the New Hampshire primary.

The Democratic Party also held its caucuses Tuesday. President Obama was unopposed for the party nomination.  However, he faces a difficult campaign to win another term because of the sluggish economy.

Watch Jim Malone's report on Tuesday night's results in Iowa:

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

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