Voting in Alabama, Mississippi could clarify GOP race - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Voting in Alabama, Mississippi could clarify GOP race

By BETH FOUHY
Associated Press

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - Mitt Romney is working to seal his status as the Republican presidential front-runner with a thus-far-elusive victory in the Deep South.

Closely fought primaries in Alabama and Louisiana offer the former Massachusetts governor a key opportunity in a region that has been slow to embrace him. Tuesday's primaries are also poised to render a possible final verdict on Newt Gingrich's Southern-focused candidacy.

With polls showing an unexpectedly tight race in the conservative bellwether states, Romney made a campaign appearance Monday in Alabama - a clear indication that he was eyeing a potential win there.

Santorum, who has angled to campaign head-to-head with Romney, is pressing the case again that Gingrich should consider stepping aside. He plans to watch returns from Louisiana, which holds its primary later this month.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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