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Metro Republicans & Democrats Weigh in on Santorum Dropping Out

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -  Republican presidential contender and the conservative favorite officially suspends his run for the White House Tuesday.   Rick Santorum's dropout is especially big news in the metro.

Santorum won the Kansas caucus and the Missouri primary.

"While this presidential race for us is over for me, we will suspend our campaign effective today, we're not done fighting," said Santorum in a press conference.

Santorum suspended his campaign, after spending a weekend with his sick daughter.  Santorum never said why he is dropping out, but the move didn't surprise Johnson County Republican Party Chairman Ronnie Metsker.

"You look at the delegate count and it was mathematically and essentially eliminated, impossible and so it was inevitable," Metsker said.

A democratic analyst agrees, although Jason Grill thought the announcement would come later, after the April 24 primaries.  One of those is being held in Santorum's home state of Pennsylvania.

"Maybe he didn't think he could win his home state.  Polls have been showing more and more that Mitt Romney is doing well so, I think he wanted to save face and look toward the future," said Grill.

The future for the Republican nomination looks like it'll go to Mitt Romney, a Mormon, and the first if elected.   Fox 4 asked Metsker if he thought republicans would support a Mormon president.   He said yes.   But our cameras were still rolling  a few minutes later when he said what he says he really wanted to say about President Barack Obama.

"Why wouldn't we elect a Mormon, we elected a Muslim?" Metsker said.

We called him later and Metsker said it wasn't the appropriate way to say it and that he was using it as shock value to simply make a point that any denomination can be elected.

Representatives of both parties Fox 4 talked to say they believe Santorum supporters would still vote republican in November.

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