S.C. predictions: If Romney wins, he's the nominee
January 15th, 2012
11:29 AM ET
11 years ago

S.C. predictions: If Romney wins, he's the nominee

(CNN) – Two influential conservative politicians in South Carolina predicted Sunday that Mitt Romney will effectively wrap up the Republican presidential nomination if he wins the upcoming Palmetto State primary.

Sen. Lindsey Graham and Rep. Tim Scott, both Republicans, told NBC's "Meet the Press" that a Romney victory in South Carolina on January 21 would end the suspense after the former Massachusetts governor won the first two contests in Iowa and New Hampshire.

"If for some reason he's not derailed here and Mitt Romney wins South Carolina, no one's ever won all three, I think it should be over," Graham said. "That would be quite a testament to his ability as a candidate and a campaigner."

On the same program, Scott said: "If Romney wins South Carolina, I think the game is over."

The comments followed a meeting of influential Christian conservative leaders over the weekend that resulted in an endorsement of former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum in an effort to prevent a split among voters on the religious right.

Scott, who won his 2010 election with heavy backing from the tea party movement, said the impact of the evangelical vote - a typically large voting bloc in conservative South Carolina - will be "huge" on Saturday. However, he added that Romney will benefit if evangelical Christian voters are divided between Santorum, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Texas Gov. Rick Perry, as polls have indicated.

"It's hard to find a single candidate that rallies all of the Christian voters in South Carolina and therefore that splintered approach will probably have a major impact in the state's primary," Scott said.

Also see:

Group backing Gingrich hits Romney for health care law and Bain record

Romney gives cash to struggling supporter at rally

Romney super PAC pummels Santorum and Gingrich by mail

Tim Scott, the ultimate undecided voter

Filed under: 2012 • Lindsey Graham • South Carolina • Tim Scott
soundoff (90 Responses)
  1. Marjee123

    As many times as he has ran he ought to be good at it by now. And then of course with all that money he can blow the rest of the candidates away. Seems like the same old story, for republicans, the one with the most money wins. It is a shame that you republicans can buy the candidacy for president. People like Huntsman don't have a chance.

    January 15, 2012 09:56 pm at 9:56 pm |
  2. Tre

    Romney wins, Obama wins. I bet the DNC is even paying for Romney's ads. As a democrat the only man I fear is Ron Paul.
    Obama 2012

    January 15, 2012 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  3. DC Observer

    Romney's sons never avoided military service; there is no draft; they opted not to go in the service – same as 98% of the mail population in the US. This is the sort of rubbish Gingrich supporters put out

    January 15, 2012 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  4. Liz the First

    Does tht mean the rest of these clowns will go away after the SC primary? we couldn't be that lucky. Hope it's true so the Obama folks can focus like a laser on Mittens Romney and make anyone out there even considering voting for another republican for president understand just how much of a disaster another rethug presidency would be. didn't 'electing' Bush teach some of us anything? the country barely survived that fiasco. let's not elect another mess-maker. let's keep the clean-up team!

    January 15, 2012 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  5. Liz the First

    Hey, 'Older than Dirt,' since you're such a conservative, have you signed away your right to social security and medicare? bet not. are you even aware those are government programs? are you even aware your party wants to take them away from you and your descendents? someone older than dirt should be smart enough not to vote against his own self-interest.

    January 15, 2012 10:12 pm at 10:12 pm |
  6. Musse K

    The 45th President of United States Of America will be Gov Mitt Romney.

    January 15, 2012 10:15 pm at 10:15 pm |
  7. joe smith

    these boys need to remember one thing..this country, is and does operate under the philosophy "of the people, for the people, and by the people"..mr graham, and mr. scott are forgetting it's the people, not the super-pacs, not the wall street hacks, not the smoke filled, back room masterplan by a few, but by the people..and mr. romney is Not what the people want..you fat cats might want him, since you bought and paid for him, but the American people will prove you all wrong..for once..

    January 15, 2012 10:16 pm at 10:16 pm |
  8. Nic

    This is hilarious. S.C. is anyone's game, I love how CNN is totally being oblivious to how Ron Paul just picked up a huge endorsement in S.C.! Tom Davis, the Senator of S.C., is endorsing Ron Paul.

    January 15, 2012 10:16 pm at 10:16 pm |
  9. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    HIstory is a good gauge of this. If Romney win, he'll have won the first 3 contests and have a lot of momentum. That will make it hard to beat him further along. That is assuming that everyone hasn't dropped out by the next major contest.

    January 15, 2012 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  10. Zorro

    Mittens go home to your son's basement!

    January 16, 2012 01:14 am at 1:14 am |
  11. John

    Are the other 47 states succeeding from the union? Do their delegates not count? Or, if CNN pounds ROMNEY, ROMNEY, ROMNEY, we will just like drones vote for ROMNEY? Wouldn't want to vote for a 'loser' now would we? God forbid we vote out of principle.

    January 16, 2012 01:24 am at 1:24 am |
  12. Squigman

    The republicans are amazing. The whole country needs to become enlightened about the real motivating factor in their caucases. They have but one issue, and it has nothing to do with pulling the country out of the worse recession since the thirties. Their only goal is to defeat Obama. The republican party is taking cues from a work of fiction called Atlas Shrugged. Then pandering to christian conservatives. And we're force fed the idologies as if they were carved in stone.

    January 16, 2012 01:33 am at 1:33 am |
  13. Joseph Smith

    This is news? Yikes.

    January 16, 2012 01:35 am at 1:35 am |
  14. tc

    then why dont they puthim through then.

    January 16, 2012 02:04 am at 2:04 am |
  15. Stephanie

    If Romney is the GOP nominee, it is only because the GOP is profoundly divided and disturbed by the choices and the anti-Romney vote is split among 4 candidates. If Perry and Santorum would lose their mega- Egos...we would see a move to Gingrich- who is a more formidable candidate than the Romney vulture. Romney is not backed by conservatives or tea party supporters. He is the epitome of the 1% and out of touch with Americans. He wins by deceit and would lead the same way. We are on the right path with Obama, Clinton and the entire administration..GOP- get out of the way and let us get on with the work of the people.

    January 16, 2012 02:14 am at 2:14 am |
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