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Elimination round

"Elimination round" Continued...

"Rick Santorum is working the hardest," Hoffman said, offering a common hat-tip among Iowa's activists to the former senator from Pennsylvania, which stems from a sense that he's respecting Iowa's tradition by visiting each of the state's 99 counties. "That does make a difference," Trimble-Ray said. "I think he'll outperform those polls."

The GOP turnout on caucus night could be huge, Kearney predicts, easily topping the 120,000 participants in 2008. Voter energy is fueled by dissatisfaction with the nation's direction and persistent job woes. One candidate will ride that wave to a win in Iowa, and history suggests only a few other candidates' hopes will survive it.

Listen to Joel Hannahs discuss The Family Leader's Thanksgiving forum on WORLD's radio news magazine The World and Everything in It.

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