Romney hopes to turn SC into rivals' last stand

By Kasie Hunt

Associated Press

Published: Wednesday, Jan. 11 2012 5:40 p.m. MST

South Carolina's less visible politics are often darker than even the brutal attack ads that are running out in the open. Tompkins refused to address just what the campaign would do in the face of surreptitious attacks on Romney's Mormon faith. His team has already sent out mailers emphasizing that he's been steady in his faith. It's a contrast with Gingrich, who recently converted to Catholicism.

"We just have to be prepared for anything and everything and be disciplined with the message and how to cut through the misinformation," Tompkins said.

Asked if he was prepared for a whisper campaign about his Mormon religion or other aspects of his background, Romney said: "Politics ain't bean bags and I know it's going to get tough and no one's going to be happy if things are said that are untrue. But I know that is sometimes part of the underbelly of politics."

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