MYRTLE BEACH, SC – The 2012 South Carolina Republican primary was held on Saturday, January 21. There were four major candidates on the ballot: Newt Gingrich, Mitt Romney, Ron Paul, and Rick Santorum.
The South Carolina primary is important to Republicans. According to the New York Times, “since 1980, every Republican winner in South Carolina has gone on to win the party nomination.” The winner Saturday was Newt Gingrich.
Reaction was mixed, of course, depending on whether or not one has been a Gingrich supporter from the beginning or whether or not one is a Republican or a Democrat. For some, the reaction depends on whether or not they are a part of the media.
According to the Huffington Post, “Gingrich praises Republican rivals, blasts Obama.” In a follow up article, Paige Lavender of the Huffington Post quoted Gingrich as saying, “The biggest thing I take from the campaign in South Carolina is that it is very humbling and very sobering to have so many people who so deeply want their country to get back on the right track.”
According to Slate, it was “the elite-media-hating voters who put Gingrich over the top in the South Carolina primary.” The Washington Post quoted Gingrich as saying “President Obama is a president so weak that he makes Jimmy Carter look strong.” While the Huffington Post quoted Gingrich as saying “Just think how radical [Obama] would be in a second term.” Rick Klein commented that “Newt looks more humble when he wins than when he loses.” Chris Gilrein had this comment: “Gingrich voters are like the people who watch CBS shows. I’m told there are millions of them, but I don’t know a single one.”
As Slate mentions in an article it tweeted about primary voters, “Gingrich voters are not, necessarily, crazy about Gingrich himself…After a while, the only differences between their endorsements were the verbs they used to describe what Gingrich would do to Barack Obama in debates.” Some see Gingrich’s win in South Carolina as a win for Obama. Jesse Taylor commented on Twitter: “Given what South Carolina did tonight to keep a black man in office, I think they’ve atoned for any previous racism.”
As can be seen by the media reaction and the reaction of other people on Twitter, although Newt Gingrich was announced the winner in the South Carolina Republican primary on Saturday, the real winner of 2012’s election has yet to be determined. But we can expect quite a bit of politicking before we get there.