Iowa Caucuses Update: Santorum and Romney Within 8 Votes for 1st. Paul 3rd.

Things are looking good for Rick Santorum to have pulled off a stunning upset. He’s certainly 1st or 2nd next to Mitt Romney. Ron Paul finished 3rd.

Here’s the very latest as of 11:30PM EST:

I think Santorum’s numbers will continue to improve slightly as the results are finalized.

1:00AM UPDATE — some first thoughts:

For many voters, tonight was the first time they got a chance to see Rick Santorum as a real contender, after he has spent the past months quietly canvassing every county in Iowa. Tonight viewers of his speech were reminded that hard work and aspiration pay off. Santorum said tonight he learned these essential lessons from the example of his grandfather and father.

He was inspiring, effective, while sounding fully like himself. He contrasted his positions with both the Democrat and Republican establishment, arguing that “cutting taxes is not enough.” He offered more: for America to reach its full potential, he said, it must embrace the values that made it into the great country it is. American values, Santorum said, which are not shared by those who currently occupy the White House.

One of my favorite lines of his speech: ‚ÄúThank God for people who cling to their guns and bibles… They understand that when the family breaks down the economy does.” One of Santorum’s unique contributions to this debate has been to constantly tie American’s economic success to the strength of her families and marriages.

Another favorite line of his: “What motivates me? The dignity of every human life.” He also tied human dignity to the particular dignity of work and labor. An uplifting vision which reveals a heart that has been touched by serving rural Pennsylvania areas where shuttered steel mills marked the landscape.

Mitt Romney began his speech by graciously congratulating Santorum for his strong finish tonight. I have to say the rest of his speech was underwhelming. Could it be that Rick managed to get underneath Romney’s skin tonight? It’s fascinating to consider what that bodes for the future.

At any rate, I think it’s pretty clear that we’ve got a real race on our hands. And I look forward to seeing how it plays out in the coming critical weeks. Stay tuned.

1:30AM UPDATE — click here for video of Rick Santorum’s speech in Iowa tonight.

12:00PM UPDATE, Day 2 — Final vote tally in Iowa: Mitt Romney, 30,015. Rick Santorum, 30,007. An 8 vote spread. A good reminder that every. vote. counts.

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28 thoughts on “Iowa Caucuses Update: Santorum and Romney Within 8 Votes for 1st. Paul 3rd.

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  2. Ed FitzPatrick says:

    Do not support Sen.Santorum Why?

    1 He supported Arlen Spector over a Senatorial candidate totally committed to life Pat Twomey was subsequentlly elected.

    2 He advocated war in Iraq leading to a new form of imperialism and destroying the Catholic community in that country

    3 He is currently a proponent of war with Iran another imperialistic adventure

    4 His senatorial activities were marked by a lack of concern over the economic challenges we face and he is properly identified as a big spending Republican.

    He hedges on marriage as witness last night’s conversation with Bill O’Reilly

    Please if you’re going to go Catholic –go Catholic– and avoid opportunitic politicians.

    1. Brian Swan says:

      I wonder if you understand what imperialism other than as a liberal buzzword. The matters you describe here are nothing like iimperialism.

  3. Brian Swan says:

    I honestly have been wishing that Santorum could be the candidate for quite some time, but it seemed like there was little chance. This could change everything. It would be a very good thing for this country to have a devout Catholic like him at the helm.

  4. John says:

    Great night. Rick Santorum is what this country has needed for years. I will be watching with much excitement and offering many prayers going forward.

    John
    servantofcharity.blogspot.com

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