By Larry Kane

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – In a photo finish, former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney won the Iowa caucuses by a margin of just eight votes more than second-place finisher, former Senator from Pennsylvania, Rick Santorum (see related story).

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Both Romney and Santorum grabbed 25% of the vote. Ron Paul finished in a close third place with 21%. Newt Gingrich was fourth (13%); Rick Perry fifth (10%). Michele Bachman (5%) and Jon Huntsman (1%) held up the rear.

Now, it’s on to New Hampshire, but Iowa provided a thriller. Imagine, Pennsylvania’s Rick Santorum, with a small fraction of Mitt Romney’s war chest, finishing so well.

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Imagine Ron Paul, the oldest of the candidates, getting the largest piece of the younger vote.

For Santorum, it is redemption after fighting for attention, and being treated as a non-factor. Now he is a factor.

New Hampshire is Romney Country. Now the question is: will Santorum get a bounce from Iowa and be able to compete in South Carolina?  Was this close contest for Romney a problem or just a bump in the road?

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