Romney snares Ohio prize in tight race

DAN SEWELL Associated Press Published:

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- Enough late-deciding Ohio Republicans finally settled on Mitt Romney to deliver the Super Tuesday prize to the GOP presidential front-runner.

And not a moment too soon.

The former Massachusetts governor turned back a tough challenge by Rick Santorum to claim an important general election swing state.

Polls have showed many voters remain uncertain until the final days of the campaign. Persuaded that Romney is their party's best bet against President Barack Obama, they swung his way in time for a 1-percent edge.

With 99 percent of precincts reporting unofficial returns, former House speaker Newt Gingrich came in third and U.S. Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, who largely bypassed Ohio, was running fourth.