Rick Santorum Wins: Colorado Caucus Results 2012

02/08/2012 01:01 am ET | Updated Feb 26, 2012

Rick Santorum was projected the winner of the Colorado caucus by CNN.

The victory came as a surprise as former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney was favored in the Centennial State race going into the contest.

Santorum was projected to finish in first place in the Minnesota caucus and Missouri primary earlier on Tuesday night.

The AP reports:

"Conservatism is alive and well in Missouri and Minnesota," the jubilant former Pennsylvania senator told cheering supporters in St. Charles, Mo. Challenging both his GOP rival and the Democratic president, he declared that on issues ranging from health care to "Wall Street bailouts, Mitt Romney has the same positions as Barack Obama."

Returns from 83 percent of Minnesota's precincts showed Santorum with 45 percent support, Texas Rep. Ron Paul with 27 percent and Romney – who won the state in his first try for the nomination four years ago – with 17 percent. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich trailed with 11 percent.

In Colorado, the state party chairman, Ryan Call, said Santorum was the winner in a long, slow count.

He spoke as returns from 79 percent of the precincts showed the former Pennsylvania senator with 38 percent support to 35 percent for Romney. Gingrich led Paul for third place, although both men had 13 percent of the vote.

Click here for HuffPost's Colorado caucus real-time results map.

Check out the live blog below for the latest developments out of Colorado, Minnesota and Missouri.

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