Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum easily won the Kansas caucus for 2012 gaining 51% of the vote. Mitt Romney finished second with 21%, Newt Gingrich third with 14% and Congressman Ron Paul fourth with 13%. Due to the huge win, Santorum is expected to earn 32 of the state′s 40 delegates. Yesterday, or today, depending which side of the International Date Line you are on, Mitt Romney won the caucus on Guam, as well as those in the Virgin Islands and the Northern Mariana Islands, such as Saipan, gaining an additional 25 of the total 27 delegates that were up for grabs. Ron Paul won one delegate from the Virgin Island caucus, with the remaining delegate uncommitted. This sets the stage for the Double-Dixie primaries on Tuesday, March 13, in Alabama and Mississippi.

rick santorum wins kansas

Newt Gingrich, who was at one point expected to do well and take both Southern states, is now in a 3-way battle with Santorum and Romney for Alabama. In Mississippi, Mitt Romney is building a lead with about 37% support according to the latest Rasmussen Poll. Santorum and Gingrich are in a virtual tie for second. On Friday night, Gingrich told Sean Hannity on Fox News that even if he loses in both states, he intends to continue forward, citing strong support in Texas with the help of Governor Rick Perry.

Of course, there will be more calls this week for Gingrich to drop out of the race, even if he only wins a narrow victory in Alabama. In many respects, Newt is now Mitt′s best friend on the campaign trail, helping to keep Santorum from winning states and enough delegates to prevent Romney from an outright nomination. Texas, which was supposed to have held the primary/caucus on April 3, moved their election back to May 29 due to a court case regarding the redrawing of the state′s Congressional Districts.

Rick Santorum would clearly like to exploit his momentum after winning three states on Super Tuesday and the Kansas caucus for 2012 today. If there are any surprises this coming Tuesday for the Mississippi and Alabama primaries, it may be him winning one, possibly both states. Even splitting the night with Romney keeps the narrative of Santorum being the only real option to Romney alive. Hawaii and American Samoa will also be holding caucuses on this coming Tuesday, and Romney is expected to win both contests, picking up most, if not all, of their 29 delegates. With another 50 in Alabama and 40 in Mississippi up for grabs, this will be help define the remainder of the 2012 GOP presidential race. The next major, multi-state fight comes on April 24 when five states, including New York and Pennsylvania, will put 231 delegates on the chopping block.