SURGE

Polls: Gingrich Leads in S.C.

It’s finally here: Voting began at 7 a.m. Saturday for the primary in South Carolina, the state whose winner has gone on to receive the GOP nomination every year since 1980. According to a new Clemson poll, Newt Gingrich has a 6-point lead, with 32 percent of the vote—while Mitt Romney had 26 percent, Ron Paul 11 percent, and Rick Santorum 9 percent. Romney’s lead crumbled in the last few days, and New York Times pollster Nate Silver now put Gingrich at an 82 percent chance of winning. But it’s unclear how many of the state’s 2.7 million voters will actually show up—anyone registered can cast a ballot, no matter what their party affiliation is. The weather is predicted to help the turnout—no rain is in the forecast.