Dear Commons Community,
Mitt Romney was the overwhelming winner on Tuesday in the Florida primary. It was probably the biggest moment so far for him and has fully restored him to frontrunner status. It has also dealt a major blow to Newt Gingrich’s candidacy. Romney won convincingly, with 46.4 percent to Gingrich’s 31.9 percent. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.) and Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) trailed behind, with 13.4 and 7.0 percent, respectively.
“ capping a week of “gutter politics,” as Santorum put it, with Romney and Gingrich trading blows that seemed only to grow more vicious and personal by the day. It marked a new chapter for Romney, who showed a willingness to throw verbal punches on the trail that he had up until now allowed his campaign to deliver for him…
Gingrich’s anger was evident after his loss. While Santorum and Paul called Romney to congratulate him on his win, Gingrich did not, a Romney source told CNN’s Candy Crowley. If you listened carefully to Newt Gingrich’s concession speech tonight, you heard the first strains of what could be an independent, third-party run for the White House if he doesn’t get the Republican nomination.
Gingrich vowed that he would not henceforth run a “Republican campaign but a people’s campaign” — raising the specter, at least rhetorically, that his vision of his role in American history is too large and personal to be contained by a mere political party.”