Urging conservatives not to yield, Republican Rick Santorum is telling supporters in Mississippi that they could make the GOP presidential contest a two-man race if they deliver him a victory next week and offer an embarrassing loss to rival Newt Gingrich in the South.
Santorum and Gingrich have been competing to emerge as front-runner Mitt Romney's chief rival, yet they continue to split the party's right-leaning bloc.
The division has allowed Romney to shore up delegates and momentum, including six of the 10 states that weighed in on Super Tuesday. Santorum won three yet remained far behind Romney.
That could change, Santorum says, with a Gingrich loss in Mississippi in what is seen as the former Georgia congressman's backyard.