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By Wolf Blitzer, CNN
Charleston, South Carolina (CNN) – All of a sudden, this contest is getting very exciting.
In these final days before Saturday’s Republican presidential primary, the gap between Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich seems to be narrowing - if you believe the latest polls. That has certainly encouraged Gingrich, who tells me he now smells the possibility of victory on Saturday.
If that were to happen, the drama would certainly intensify going into the Florida primary on January 31.
During my interview with Gingrich today, he seemed confident. “I think by Saturday we’ll be ahead and depending on how many conservatives come home, we could be ahead by a pretty comfortable margin,” Gingrich said.
He knows that the millions spent by the pro-Romney super PAC in Iowa hurt him badly. He’s now going after Romney with a new, more assertive aggression. And it seems to be paying off.
For his part, Gingrich tells me he won the GOP debate Monday night in Myrtle Beach, and that has encouraged undecided Republicans to vote for him Saturday. That sets the stage for the CNN debate Thursday here in Charleston.
The former House speaker also told me that he was delighted Sarah Palin said she’d vote for him in the primary if she lived in South Carolina.
“I would ask her to consider taking a major role in the next administration if I’m president,” he said.
By the way, the political attack ads on television here are intense. I watched TV this morning and even I - a hardened political news junkie - was surprised by how tough they are.
If Gingrich wins here Saturday, the stakes for Florida will intensify. This is exciting.
Watch Wolf Blitzer's interview with Newt Gingrich today during the 5 p.m. ET hour of "The Situation Room."
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