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The GOP Field After Iowa

Mitt Romney wins a squeaker in Iowa. Rick Santorum and Ron Paul right behind. The meaning of Iowa and the GOP’s road ahead.

In a Dec. 31, 2011 file photo Republican presidential candidate, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, left, speaks during a campaign appearance in Knoxville, Iowa. In a Jan. 2, 2012 file photo Republican presidential candidate former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney speaks during a campaign stop in Clive, Iowa. Santorum and Romney took near opposite paths to twin victories in Iowa's presidential caucuses. (AP)

In a Dec. 31, 2011 file photo Republican presidential candidate, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, left, speaks during a campaign appearance in Knoxville, Iowa. In a Jan. 2, 2012 file photo Republican presidential candidate former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney speaks during a campaign stop in Clive, Iowa. Santorum and Romney took near opposite paths to twin victories in Iowa's presidential caucuses. (AP)

An Iowa squeaker! Romney, Santorum, Ron Paul – neck and neck… and neck. An eight vote win. It’s never been seen before. Last night Iowans did their quadrennial caucus duties, and painted quite a picture of the GOP.

A skin-of-the-teeth winner who’s miles from winner-take-all. A come-from-last-place virtual tie challenger in Rick Santorum, touting God on his side. Iconoclast hero Ron Paul right in the front rank. Newt Gingrich shouting “liar” from fourth place. Wow.

This hour, On Point: Iowa speaks and it’s not over. We look at the vote and the GOP road ahead.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Kathie Obradovich, political columnist for the Des Moines Register.

Kim Alfano, Republican media consultant. President and CEO of Alfano Communications.

Neil King, Jr., political reporter for the Wall Street Journal.

From Tom’s Reading List

Des Moines Register “The invisible man of the 2012 Republican presidential campaign, Ron Paul, is now facing the same scrutiny and attacks that have humbled or derailed many of his rivals’ campaigns.”

Wall Street Journal “For the past four years, Ohio’s Hamilton County has had a front seat on America’s political roller coaster.”

USA Today “For more than three decades, the opening contest here in Iowa has narrowed the Republican field and sharpened a race that was then decided by a handful of early contests, well before most states had voted. This time, though, a revised primary calendar and changed party rules have set the stage for what could be a longer and less predictable slog.”

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