Anti-Mitts Pin Hopes on SC

Tea Partiers, evangelicals starting to panic
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 11, 2012 2:48 AM CST
Anti-Mitts Pin Hopes on SC
Newt Gingrich speaks at Tommy's Ham House in Greenville, South Carolina.   (AP Photo/Richard Shiro, File)

Mitt Romney now has two wins under his belt, and some conservative activists are starting to panic. Many see South Carolina's Jan. 21 primary as their last chance to unify support behind a conservative candidate, but there's no agreement on who that candidate should be, the Washington Post finds. Tea Party groups are leaning toward Newt Gingrich, while the GOP's evangelicals want a social conservative like Rick Santorum.

Activists fear a repeat of 2008, when John McCain won the nomination after conservatives failed to rally behind Iowa winner Mike Huckabee. "We’re aware that the vote is being split and how dangerous that is,” admits the chairman of the Myrtle Beach Tea Party. "We’re trying to encourage coalescing around one candidate. “But Tea Party people are very independent-minded." Some conservative are still hoping for a fresh candidate to enter the race at the last minute, and win enough delegates to force a brokered GOP convention. (More Election 2012 stories.)

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