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Romney—no, Santorum—the Winner of the Iowa Caucus (UPDATED)

Rick Santorum on the campaign trail in Iowa

Rick Santorum campaigns in West Des Moines, Iowa.  Photo courtesy of Gage Skidmore.

In the official kick-off to the 2012 horse race, former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney barely edged out rival former Senator Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania to win yesterday’s Republican Party Caucus in Iowa by the slimmest of margins. Romney won 30,015 out of 122,255 cast votes, narrowly beating Santorum’s 30,007 votes. Coming in a close third was Congressman Ron Paul of Texas, followed more distantly by former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, Governor Rick Perry of Texas, Representative Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, and former Governor of Utah and Ambassador to China, Jon Huntsman.

UPDATE, January 19:  After the official vote certification process, the Iowa Republican Party has declared Rick Santorum the winner of the Iowa caucuses by 34 votes.

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