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Stephen Dinan

Stephen Dinan

Stephen Dinan can be reached at sdinan@washingtontimes.com.

Articles by Stephen Dinan

Texas Gov. Rick Perry and his wife, Anita, arrive for a news conference in North Charleston, S.C., on Thursday, Jan. 19, 2012, at which he announced the suspension of his GOP presidential campaign and his endorsement of former House Speaker Newt Gingrich. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

Perry pulls out of race, backs Gingrich

Texas Gov. Rick Perry ended his bid for the Republican presidential nomination Thursday morning and endorsed rival Newt Gingrich, further crystallizing the race for the conservative alternative to front-runner Mitt Romney. Published January 19, 2012

** FILE ** Republican presidential hopeful Rick Santorum greets his audience at a gathering Tuesday on the USS Yorktown in Mount Pleasant, S.C. He is trying to convince voters in the run-up to the state's primary Saturday that he is the best conservative in the race. (Associated Press)

Recount gives Santorum edge in Iowa caucuses

Rick Santorum claimed a victory in Iowa's caucuses Thursday after a recount of the Jan. 3 votes gave him a 34-vote advantage over Mitt Romney, who earlier had been declared the winner in the first contest of the Republican presidential nomination. Published January 19, 2012

INFLUENTIAL: South Carolina residents Peggy Morse of Myrtle Beach, Beth Morse Ferguson of Charleston and Mary Ann Carnazza of Longs listen to Republican presidential hopeful Rick Perry speak in Myrtle Beach on Monday. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

Female turnout critical in South Carolina primary

Female voters generally turn out at a lower rate than men in Republican primaries, but not in South Carolina, where in past elections estimates say they have made up about half of the electorate — more than all but a few other states. Published January 18, 2012

Rep. Ron Paul of Texas waves to supporters after a campaign stop at a Holiday Inn in Rock Hill, S.C. Mr. Paul's non-interventionist stance has fueled his rise in the GOP presidential field. He finished in third place in Iowa and in second place in New Hampshire. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

Times poll shows GOP schism on interventionism

Nearly half of all Republican primary voters say it's time the U.S. stops intervening in world affairs and focuses on domestic priorities instead, signaling a persistent rift that is playing out in the party's presidential nomination battle. Published January 17, 2012

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney campaigns for the Republican presidential nomination at the Florence Civic Center in Florence, S.C., on Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2012. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

Romney defers release of income-tax returns

Mitt Romney said Tuesday he will eventually release his income-tax returns, but acknowledged he likely pays a lower overall tax rate than many less-wealthy Americans. Published January 17, 2012

Republican Presidential hopefuls Rick Perry, Rick Santorum, Mitt Romney, and Newt Gingrich take the stage at a Presidential Debate held by The South Carolina Republican Party, Fox News Channel, The Wall Street Journal, and Twitter at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center, Myrtle Beach, SC, Monday, January 16, 2012. (Andrew Harnik / The Washington Times)

GOP voters want Gingrich on 'Dancing With the Stars'

Republican primary voters think Rick Santorum is the most generous of heart and say Mitt Romney is the man they would trust to manage their financial portfolios, but it's Newt Gingrich whom they want to see do the hustle on TV. Published January 17, 2012

** FILE ** Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, a Republican presidential candidate, campaigns at Cherokee Trike and More in Greer, S.C., on Thursday. (Associated Press)

Romney solidifying lead, Times poll finds

With two wins under his belt, Mitt Romney holds a significant lead among national Republican voters, though there is still room for conservative voters to unite against him and back an alternative to be the GOP presidential nominee, according to the latest The Washington Times/JZ Analytics Poll. Published January 17, 2012

Republican presidential hopefuls Rick Perry, Rick Santorum, Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul take the stage at a debate held by the South Carolina Republican Party, Fox News Channel, The Wall Street Journal and Twitter at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center, Myrtle Beach, S.C., Monday, Jan. 16, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

In debate, Romney urged to release tax forms

Mitt Romney's opponents in the Republican presidential primary pounced Monday night, using the latest debate to question his economic record, turn his own supporters' attacks back on him, and demand he release his tax forms. Published January 16, 2012

Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman walks off stage with his family Jan. 16, 2012, after announcing the withdrawal of his presidential candidacy in Myrtle Beach, S.C. From left are wife Mary Kaye and daughters Gracie and Abby. (Associated Press)

Withdrawing Huntsman takes parting shot at GOP field

Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. dropped out of the Republican presidential race Monday and endorsed former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, but not before firing one last shot at the rest of the field, accusing them of running a race "not worthy of the American people." Published January 16, 2012

Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum speaks at the Faith & Freedom Coalition Prayer Breakfast at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center on Sunday, Jan. 15, 2012. (AP Photo/The Sun News, Janet Blackmon Morgan)

Santorum defends support for restoring felons' voting rights

Rick Santorum pushed back Monday morning against a series of ads being run against him on his record on earmarks, labor issues and a vote he took in 2002 that would have forced states to let felons' voting rights be restored when they completed their sentences. Published January 16, 2012

Huntsman

Huntsman set to exit GOP presidential race

Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. planned to withdraw from the Republican presidential race on Monday, winnowing the field down to Mitt Romney and four others who are trying to stake their claim to be the conservative alternative to the former Massachusetts governor. Published January 15, 2012

"We've spent months on things that used to happen just matter-of-factly. I would hope that they understand that everything doesn't have to be a fight," Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Nevada Democrat, said.

Congress logs most futile legislative year on record

It's official: Congress ended its least-productive year in modern history after passing 80 bills — fewer than during any other session since year-end records began being kept in 1947. Published January 15, 2012

Republican presidential candidate Texas Gov. Rick Perry speaks at a campaign stop at the Hilton Head Diner Friday, Jan. 13, 2012, in Hilton Head, S.C. A federal judge refused to add Rick Perry and three others to the Virginia Presidential primary Friday. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

Four GOP candidates blocked on Va. ballot bid

A judge has rejected a last-ditch bid by four Republican presidential candidates to get on Virginia's GOP primary ballot, leaving the March 6 contest only to front-runner Mitt Romney and Texas Rep. Ron Paul. Published January 13, 2012

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and South Carolina Gov. Nikki R. Haley campaign at the Hall at Senate's End in Columbia, S.C., on Wednesday. Mr. Romney took aim at President Obama on the stump, saying he is in "over his head." (Associated Press)

Romney targets Obama on stump in South Carolina

Fresh off his win in New Hampshire, Mitt Romney arrived in South Carolina on Wednesday sounding ever more like the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, launching straight into an attack on President Obama. Published January 11, 2012

Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney boards his campaign plane Wednesday in Bedford, Mass., heading for South Carolina, site of the next primary contest on Jan. 21. His strong stance against illegal immigration dovetails with South Carolina's tough new law. (Associated Press)

Romney's push against amnesty makes immigration a defining issue

Mitt Romney collected the endorsements Wednesday of the architect of Arizona's immigration-crackdown law, completing a journey that has taken him from lukewarm support of legalization to the Republican presidential field's most ardent opponent of amnesty. Published January 11, 2012

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney celebrates his win in the New Hampshire primary election in Manchester, N.H., on Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2012. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

Romney boosts bankroll with best fundraising quarter

Fresh off his win in New Hampshire, making former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney two-for-two in the race for the Republican presidential nomination, his campaign on Wednesday said he had raised $24 million in the final three months of 2011 and had $19 million in cash on hand. Published January 11, 2012

Richard Boggs of Fort Mill, S.C., (left) listens as Texas Gov. Rick Perry, a GOP presidential hopeful, speaks (at right) during a campaign stop to Kinch's restaurant in Rock Hill, S.C., on Tuesday. (Associated Press)

Up next, South Carolina a make-or-break state

Even before Mitt Romney clinched the New Hampshire primary Tuesday, most of the Republican candidates already had turned their eye to South Carolina, which is shaping up to be the key make-or-break test in the party's presidential nomination marathon. Published January 10, 2012

FINAL HOURS: One day before the first presidential primary, Republican Rep. Ron Paul of Texas visits MoeJoe's Family Restaurant in Manchester, N.H. (Rod Lamkey Jr./The Washington Times)

Paul's campaign finds big gender gap to bridge

Ron Paul's been playing to big crowds in Iowa and New Hampshire, but there's something striking about them — there are usually way more men than women at his events. Published January 9, 2012