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DeWine Dumps Romney, Endorses Santorum

2:26 PM, Feb 17, 2012 • By MICHAEL WARREN
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Former Ohio senator Mike DeWine, a Republican, is shifting his support from Mitt Romney to Rick Santorum. Nearly two weeks before the Ohio primary on March 6, DeWine's change of endorsement came as a surprise to the Romney campaign, BuzzFeed's McKay Coppins reports:

Sources inside the Romney campaign told BuzzFeed that DeWine never called to make known his intentions of switching endorsements. And another Republican who spoke to a top Romney aide as rumors swirled said that as of late this morning, campaign officials had no inkling that the Ohio AG was planning to flip his support.

The Romney campaign initially went silent when BuzzFeed first reported earlier today that an Ohio Romney backer was planning to switch his endorsement: multiple e-mails and phone calls seeking comment from campaign officials went unreturned.

Campaign sources later said they believe DeWine was unhappy with their candidate's opposition to a felon voting bill that was backed by DeWine, Santorum, and Arlen Specter—and no other Republicans.

DeWine, like Santorum, lost his reelection bid in 2006 after having served two terms in the Senate.

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