WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Mitt Romney held a slim lead over Rick Santorum in the Republican presidential primary with 12 percent of the vote counted in Ohio, the most closely watched of the 10 nominating contests being held on Super Tuesday.

Romney was leading 39 percent to 37 percent for Santorum, with 12 percent of the vote counted. A victory in Ohio and a good showing elsewhere would make Romney, a former Massachusetts governor, the favorite to win the nomination. Santorum, a former U.S. senator from neighboring Ohio, has been campaigning as the conservative alternative to Romney.

(Reporting by Deborah Charles; Editing by Vicki Allen)




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