At S.C. Ham House, The Early Bird Avoids Confrontation

Mitt Romney signs autographs inside Tommy's Country Ham House in Greenville, S.C., on Saturday. i i

hide captionMitt Romney signs autographs inside Tommy's Country Ham House in Greenville, S.C., on Saturday.

Paul J. Richards/AFP/Getty Images
Mitt Romney signs autographs inside Tommy's Country Ham House in Greenville, S.C., on Saturday.

Mitt Romney signs autographs inside Tommy's Country Ham House in Greenville, S.C., on Saturday.

Paul J. Richards/AFP/Getty Images

Tommy's Country Ham House in Greenville, S.C., was jam packed this morning with voters wanting to catch some action between GOP presidential rivals Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich, who were scheduled to show up for breakfast at the same time.

But Romney showed up a little early, just as polls indicate he's losing ground to Gingrich.

"We'd like to win here of course, but we've got a long way to go," he said, inviting supporters to come help him in Florida.

One woman shouted, "Thanks for paying for our breakfast!"

"We're happy to pay for breakfast," Romney responded, "but there's no free lunch."

Newt Gingrich stands on an ice cooler while addressing the crowd at Tommy's Country Ham House. i i

hide captionNewt Gingrich stands on an ice cooler while addressing the crowd at Tommy's Country Ham House.

Win McNamee/Getty Images
Newt Gingrich stands on an ice cooler while addressing the crowd at Tommy's Country Ham House.

Newt Gingrich stands on an ice cooler while addressing the crowd at Tommy's Country Ham House.

Win McNamee/Getty Images

By the time Newt Gingrich arrived, the former Massachusetts governor had already worked the dining room and loaded back up on his bus.

Gingrich cheekily asked, "Where's Mitt?" He seemed disappointed to have missed a debate opportunity.

Supporters of both camps stuck around to order country ham, biscuits, grits and other country fare. Many of the voters I spoke with say they remained undecided until today, while some of the Gingrich voters say the former House speaker's strong debate performance Thursday night made the difference.

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