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Romney says result in Iowa 'hard to predict'

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Mitt Romney is no longer predicting a first-place finish in the Iowa caucuses. He tells MSNBC, "It's hard to predict exactly what's going to happen."

But Romney says he thinks he'll "be among the top group."

He had told hundreds of supporters in Iowa last night that he would win today's caucuses, and eventually the Republican nomination for president.

According to the polls, his chief opponents in Iowa are Ron Paul and Rick Santorum. But thousands of caucus-goers are still undecided. He's facing diminished threats in Iowa from the two candidates his campaign had worried most about -- Rick Perry and Newt Gingrich. Instead of focusing on his Republican rivals, Romney has stayed focused on Barack Obama.

Romney says the top three finishers "will get a good sendoff into New Hampshire, South Carolina and Florida" -- the first three primary states.

The former Massachusetts governor is holding a rally today in Des Moines ahead of an evening gathering in the Iowa capital to wait for the caucus results.


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