Analyst: Gingrich should drop out

CBS News

(CBS News) Rich Lowry, editor of the National Review, said today that Newt Gingrich doesn't have the "rationale" to stay in the Republican presidential race any more.

Noting that the former House Speaker has won two of the 30 contests so farm Lowry said, "His geographic base seems to be the border between South Carolina and Georgia, the two states he's won."

"I think (Rick) Santorum has outclassed and beaten Newt Gingrich and deserves a chance at the clean shot at (Mitt) Romney," Lowry added, on CBS News' "Face the Nation."

During a roundtable discussion, Lowry also offered some criticism of the Republican front-runner, Mitt Romney, calling him "weak."

"He really needs to keep his boot on the neck of whoever is in second place. . . . It's not an uplifting way to win the nomination, but I think that's what he has to do," he said.

Earlier on "Face the Nation," Reince Priebus, head of the Republican National Committee, said the long primary process is a good test for the Republican nominee for the race against President Obama in the fall. But CBS News White House correspondent Norah O'Donnell said she has spoken with Republicans who are worried about the primary fight.

"This has not excited the Republican base," O'Donnell said, noting that voter participation is down. "Mitt Romney has very high unfavorables, higher than any other recent nominee other than Bill Clinton, so it has taken its toll on the Republicans."

O'Donnell said it that doesn't mean it will be a walk in the park for President Obama.

"President Obama is looking at a very difficult re-election with unemployment still at 8 percent and a lot of people feeling pain because of rising gas prices, but the Republicans are struggling."

Ed Gillespie, former head of the Republican National Convention, relayed a more optimistic tone.

"At the end of the day, someone is going to wrap up the nomination," he said.

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