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. chris dyrkacz

    pure propoganda- ron paul is a far superior canindate, dont try to act like hes not there

    January 15, 2012 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  2. brandon kearney

    Just like that woman that prayed for Romney and $60, I too will pray for Romney. If I do not receive $60 I will feel that I've been treated unfairly.

    January 15, 2012 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  3. vic , nashville ,tn

    Long time back democrats predict Romney is GOP nominee

    January 15, 2012 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  4. Rick McDaniel

    They keep trying to convince us.......but I am not convinced. Perhaps Rpomney only becomes the nominee, if the other candidates can't afford to stay in the race.

    January 15, 2012 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  5. GonzoinHouston

    It's not exactly a long-shot prognostication; since 1980 the winner in SC has eventually become the Republican nominee.

    That being said, if he does win in SC, about the only thing that could prevent Mitt from winning the nomination would be for all the other candidates but one (take your pick) to drop out and endorse the non-Romney. "Anyone but Romney" still has a lot of support in the GOP, and Mitt will have his hands full trying to motivate those people to work for his election.

    Given a choice between Romney and Obama, a lot of republicans will opt to stay home with Jack Daniels on election day.

    January 15, 2012 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  6. Bob

    My prediction, if Romney wins we're doomed!

    January 15, 2012 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  7. Bzig

    So the other 47 states can just cancel their elections because they don't count anymore?

    January 15, 2012 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  8. GI Joe

    Notice that little scar undr his chin? That's where he had some of the fat removed last year . I remember when it happened.

    He needs to go – and McCain too. They've outlived their usefulness. Blowhards not wanted.

    January 15, 2012 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  9. Vince Romano

    The fear Ron Paul must strike in these people is amazing! For them not to mention the 2nd place candidate and mention a guy who had 9% of the vote is laughable. These people are hanging on by a string....

    January 15, 2012 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  10. MWM

    If Romney can win in states as politically diverse as Iowa, NH, and SC he will have proven that he can win the nomination. That is a big step, but can he gender enough support to win a general election?

    January 15, 2012 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  11. newt Gangreneritch

    Yeah right....3 primaries are all that matter? That's why we have 50 primaries, so that only the 1st 3 matter. I tire of the lamestream media refuses to question anything. Where is the actual deconstruction of this notion in this article? Where' the track record of these two political morons on predicting other races? Are they god? do they not deserve questioning of their opinion or should it simply be stated as fact as this article does?

    January 15, 2012 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |

    The fix was in from day #1.

    January 15, 2012 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  13. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Mittens has already been chosen by the Kochs and Rove, so it is over. Actually, the republican primary has been over for six months.

    January 15, 2012 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  14. clarke

    Maybe so, but he won't win the general election. I am wondering if he wasn't running for President would he have given that women any money. Don't think so and when yyou do help people why must you make it a story. Help them because you want to and you mean it, not because it looks good.. No class and it's all about Mitt. "See what I did, I am such a nice guy." NOT

    January 15, 2012 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  15. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Romney will win SC with 25% of the primary vote, and will be named the official GOP corporate raider against the American people.

    January 15, 2012 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  16. Larry L

    What he's trying to say is South Carolina is crazy enough to represent the Republican Party and certainly they are gullible enough to fall for the ads played by Romney's super PACs. Once again... we can thank the US Supreme Court for serving their masters – the Republican Party. It's a sad day when the Court becomes the lap-dog of a political party. It simply removes a critical check & balance from our democracy and makes a cynical joke of our legal system.

    January 15, 2012 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  17. Dave

    So, is this really democracy at work?

    Two relatively small states have decided who will receive the Republican nomination, how is that democratic!

    January 15, 2012 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  18. Aki

    Sure you can predict that he will be the president. That's just based on the past happenings. Mitt may be killed, or get arrested for being a pedophile. However, he may also just lose to someone else.

    Also, this kind of story really puts down my state. It says that my caucus doesn't matter. Sorry, Mitt, you're a liar to me, you get no vote.

    January 15, 2012 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  19. Thomas

    Ann Coulter’s Change of Heart about Mitt Romney
    "If we lose we will never get the country back, it will be gone. We will be Western Europe," Coulter says.

    The rats are boarding the ship of fools !

    January 15, 2012 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  20. willie floyd

    Bought elections-we are no longer a democracy if we allow these actions to continue.


    January 15, 2012 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  21. Mormons Are Christian

    According to a 2012 Pew Forum poll of members of the Church of Jesus Christ (LDS) 98 percent said they believe in the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, and 97 percent say their church is a Christian religion. Mormons have a better understanding of Christianity than any other denomination, according to a 2010 Pew Forum poll.

    11 of the signers of the Declaration of Independence (including several presidents) were non-Trinitarian Christians. Those in South Carolina who now insist on their narrow Trinitarian and salvation-only-by-grace definition of Christianity for candidates for public office are doing our Republic an injustice.

    January 15, 2012 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  22. Peace

    They are just predicting but NOT endorsing him. This tells all.

    January 15, 2012 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
  23. skekLach

    Oh, CNN, you never cease to amuse me. Let's really review the case so far though... In Iowa, Mitt got merely 8 more votes than Santorum and Ron Paul only lagged by 4%. It was nothing even remotely resembling a decisive victory. New Hampshire is practically a home state for Mitt, so his large win there was quite anticipated. IF Romney wins S.C., it's hardly indicative at this point that he's swept all the other candidates or is clearly who the country wants for the nomination. It would be the first state Romney truly won decisively, which I'm doubting he'll even do there. Furthermore, the smear campaigning has just started to get into full swing and it's hard to say who is going to take heat and how badly they're going to be burned and if you've seen "When Mitt Romney Came To Town", it certainly looks like he's going to get the brunt of it all. Add in the fact that, despite you refusing to inform the people of it, Ron Paul recently won the Saddle Up Texas Straw Poll decisively, which, while being Paul's home state, holds enough delegates to really be a big deal in terms of who wins it. 155 delegates if a winner were to take 50% of the vote. Romney honestly isn't as clear cut of a winner as you try to depict him. Stating that something has consistently happened and citing that as a call for him to get the nomination is just silly. This isn't every election cycle before us, it's this one, so let's go through it and see what actually happens instead of bogging ourselves in what it has been before.

    January 15, 2012 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  24. T'sah From Virginia

    ►S.C. predictions: If Romney wins, he's the nominee◄
    If "IF" was a NOT – then we all have to wait and see!!!

    In the meantime, Obama 2012!!

    January 15, 2012 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  25. Robert (Pennsylvania)

    How many of the declaration signers wore magic underwear and believed that major biblical battles were fought in upstate NY?

    January 15, 2012 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
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