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Gingrich Surges to Win in South Carolina Republican Primary

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Newt Gingrich has won the South Carolina Republican primary, Fox News projects, further scrambling an already volatile presidential race which has produced three different winners in three states as the candidates head next to Florida. 

Fox News projects that Mitt Romney will place second in the Palmetto State, where he was leading in the polls just one week ago. With 86 percent of precincts reporting, Gingrich has 41 percent and Romney has 27 percent. 

Rick Santorum will finish in third place, Fox News projects, while Ron Paul will finish last.

Gingrich's victory marks a remarkable comeback for the former House speaker, propelled by his strong performance in two debates in South Carolina this week. 

Keeping a positive tone to his victory speech Saturday night, Gingrich praised his GOP opponents left in the race while urging supporters to focus on defeating the "radical" incumbent in the White House. 

"We want to run not a Republican campaign. We want to run an American campaign," Gingrich said.