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Counting in Iowa

11:52 PM, Jan 3, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
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Via the Drudge Report 

RICK 29,051
MITT 28,938

And that's with 96 percent of precincts reporting. As the final votes are being counted from tonight's Iowa caucuses, Henry Olsen predicts a Rick Santorum victory

Santorum’s vote is tracking Huckabee’s in areas of strength (although he’s polling well behind Huck did in those areas) and the areas of the state still not reporting are largely Huckabee counties...

Romney is running behind his 2008 percentage in most areas of the state, and is running only even with those totals in the urban center...

And Michael Barone explains where Santorum and Mitt Romney are getting votes from: 

Rick Santorum’s 357 public events in all of Iowa’s 99 counties is reflected in the fact that he is carrying more counties in reported returns than any other candidates. However, contrary to suggestions from me and others, he’s not ahead in heavily (60%-plus) Catholic Dubuque County, where he’s behind Mitt Romney (who won 42% here in 2008, his best percentage in any Iowa county) and Ron Paul in current incomplete returns. Interestingly, Santorum doesn’t have big leads in many counties, but with some notable exceptions, including Grundy County, the home of Senator Charles Grassley, and Butler, Floyd and Howard Counties, farming counties just to the north, and Buchanan County to the east. Santorum also has big leads in Mahaska, Marion and Jasper Counties, the first two of which have heavily Dutch-American populations; Jasper, just east of Des Moines, was for years the home of the Maytag company. In even more heavily Dutch-American Sioux City in northwest Iowa, Santorum beat Romney by a huge 46%-15% margin, similar to the Santorum lead in much smaller Lyon County just to the north, where Santorum leads  61%-11% lead over Paul.

Mitt Romney has his biggest leads where he did in 2008: in eastern Iowa, where he’s carrying current returns in Dubuque County solidly and Scott County (Davenport) narrowly. He’s running best, it seems, in relatively upscale areas. In Dallas County just west of Des Moines, the fastest-growing county in the state, Romney is leading 34%-20%, and in Linn County (Cedar Rapids, including its upscale suburbs), where Romney leads Paul and Santorum 30%-24%-21%, where 8,383 votes have been counted and 7,824 were cast in 2008. Reporting late but importantly was Des Moines’s Polk County, where 21,600 votes are now reported as compared to a 22,493 total in 2008, Romney leads Paul and Santorum by a 29%-23%-22% margin. Also Romney is carrying Johnson County (Iowa City) leads Paul and Santorum 35%-31%-17%. Romney essentially carried the relatively large urban counties.

Whole thing here

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