In the weeks leading up to the Iowa Caucus, the unofficial start to the 2012 campaign season, the race appeared to be between former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich for the Republican Party candidacy.
But if the Iowa Caucus is to be used as a measuring stick, there appears to be a surging candidate for that top spot in Rick Santorum. The former Pennsylvania Senator finished in second, by only eight votes, to Romney and well ahead of Texas Rep. Ron Paul, in third, and Gingrich, in fourth.
Paul, who was hoping for a breakout victory, had a disappointing showing but told his supporters to “be ready and raring” according to an article by The Washington Post.
The remaining candidates whose names have been mentioned in this race, Texas Gov. Rick Perry and Minnesota Rep. Michele Backmann finished fifth and sixth. Following the caucus, Backmann announced she was suspending her run for this election on Wednesday morning in a press conference and Perry has retreated to Texas to reassess his campaign according to an article by CBS News.
“Last night, the people of Iowa spoke with a very clear voice, and so I have decided to stand aside,” Bachmann said in her press conference.
Next up for the Republican candidates will be New Hampshire on January 10. According to an article by Huffington Post, Santorum shouldn’t see the kind of support he saw in Iowa. Romney however according to CBS News holds a commanding lead.
Going into the caucus Gingrich held a 2.4 lead over Romney as of January 2 in the latest Real Clear Politics polls. Paul was in third and Santorum in sixth. Only time will tell how this caucus will change the layout of the polls.