Frontrunner Envy? Mitt Romney Claws at Rick Santorum in Debate

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"Severe, strict," Romney said. "I was, without question, a conservative governor of my state."

Newt Gingrich, who got fewer questions than at previous debates, was an ally of Santorum's only rarely. As the two lead candidates debated earmarks, the former House speaker said that Romney was correct to ask the government for money to support the Olympics - but that he was wrong to then criticize Santorum for being involved in the earmark process.

Romney, Gingrich said, shouldn't "claim that what you got wasn't what they got because what you got was right and what they got was wrong."

The debate was mostly serious, characterized by Romney and Santorum bickering in center stage over their conservative credentials. But in a rare moment of light questioning, the candidates were asked to describe themselves in one word.

Said a stone-faced Gingrich: "cheerful."

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