Florida Primary 2012: Romney says nasty primary will not divide party

11:09 PM, Jan 31, 2012   |    comments
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TAMPA, Fla. -- Former Massachusetts's Governor Mitt Romney scored a resounding victory in Florida's Republican primary Tuesday collecting all of the state's 50 delegates.

The win was impressive considering 10 days ago Gingrich defeated Romney in South Carolina and appeared to be riding a wave of momentum.

But after outspending Gingrich nearly 5-to-1 in the Sunshine State, along with two impressive debate performances, Romney seemed to pull away in most polls late last week.

The primary at times also seemed to get nasty, with attack ads by both Romney and Gingrich littering the television airwaves.

But during his victory speech from the Tampa Convention Center Tuesday night, Romney noted primaries are not "supposed to be easy." He added what's happened in Florida will not weaken nor divide the Republican Party, but it will better prepare it for a November win.

He told the audience that the election in November is about "more than replacing a president, it's about saving the soul of America."

Romney never mentioned his Republican rivals by name during his victory speech, only saying the field included "serious and able" competitors.

The crowd erupted into applause and chants of "Mitt! Mitt! Mitt!" numerous times during his roughly 11-minute long speech. But two of the largest responses from the audience came after Romney vowed to balance the budget without raising taxes and to repeal Obamacare if elected president.

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