Overcoming an 18 point deficit in the polls, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich soundly defeated former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney in the South Carolina GOP presidential primary by 12%.
The Speaker ended the night with 40% of the vote compared to Romney’s 28%.
Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum earned 17% of the vote. Texas Congressman Ron Paul got 13% and Herman Cain, who dropped out of the race weeks ago got 1%.
The race for the GOP nomination moves on to Florida which holds its primary on January 31. Recent polls give Romney a 20%+ edge in the Sunshine State. As we saw tonight, there’s only one poll that counts.
We have a contest.