Santorum Defeats Romney to Win Republican North Dakota Caucuses, AP Says

Rick Santorum won the North Dakota Republican presidential caucuses today, the Associated Press and CNN projected.

North Dakota will send 28 delegates to the Republican convention in August. The caucus results aren’t binding on the delegates.

AP and CNN projected Santorum’s victory over former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, U.S. Representative Ron Paul of Texas and former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

Santorum, a former U.S. senator from Pennsylvania, campaigned in North Dakota in mid-February, while Romney visited on March 1. Paul held rallies in the state in February and returned today seeking caucus support.

North Dakota’s economy improved more than that of any other state from the first quarter of 2009 to the third quarter of 2011, the latest data available, according to the Bloomberg Economic Evaluation of States. The index measures such areas as personal income, job creation, home prices and tax revenue.

Santorum also won contests today in Oklahoma and Tennessee, according to AP and television network projections.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jonathan D. Salant in Washington at jsalant@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Jeanne Cummings at jcummings21@bloomberg.net

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