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Super Tuesday sets up long battle to GOP nomination

Posted at 6:50 AM, Mar 07, 2012
and last updated 2012-03-07 07:05:55-05

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) - Three Republican presidential hopefuls came out of Super Tuesday with wins. CBS News reporting Mitt Romney scored the most, netting six wins, easily scooping victories in Virginia, Vermont, Idaho and Massachusetts, the state where he served as governor and considers home. In Virginia, two of his challengers, Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich, failed to qualify for the ballot. Romney also managed victories in Idaho and Alaska.

Rick Santorum had a relatively strong night, coming within a percentage point of a win in the closely watched contest in Ohio. Evangelical voters helped Santorum finish on top in Tennessee and Oklahoma. He also put North Dakota in his win column.

As expected Newt Gingrich took Georgia, a state where his longtime connections still resonate with voters.

While it's clear Mitt Romney is still the frontrunner for the nomination, his weak performance Tuesday renews questions about whether Republican voters will warm up to the former Massachusetts governor.

It all adds up to a situation in which the GOP race appears likely to continue into the summer and possibly all the way to a contested convention in August, where a long primary process could doom the Republican nominee in November.