UPDATE: Santorum unofficially receives 49 percent of vote

The state of Louisiana went to the polls Saturday to voice their opinion on the U.S. Presidential race, and their opinions said "Rick Santorum."

The former Pennsylvania senator won the Louisiana Primary with, unofficially, 91,305 votes, or just under 49 percent of the Republicans' votes.

And while Santorum will now add Louisiana's delegates to his count, the win does little for the two to one advantage Mitt Romney has over Santorum. (Going into Louisiana, Romney had 563 delegates, more than twice the 251 Santorum had.)

For his part, Romney finished a distant second in the Louisiana Presidential Preference Primary, receiving only about 26.7 percent of the vote.

The math advantage Romney holds may seem insurmountable, but Santorum says he will not give up just yet saying the races is not over yet and recalling the naysayers who said Ronald Reagan was too conservative to win the nomination.

"Ronald Reagan fought that battle in 1976 and he did something that had not been done since: as someone as a conservative running against the establishment, he won 11 states. Well tonight, thanks to the great people of Louisiana, we have won our 11th state in this primary fight," he said to supporters Saturday night.

But the road ahead is a difficult one for Santorum, who is slogging it out in what has become a game of numbers to clinch the 1,144 delegates needed to clinch the nomination.

Former GOP House Speaker Next Gingrich and Rep. Ron Paul finished a distant third and fourth, respectively. Gingrich picked up more than 29,500 votes or 16 percent, while Paul captured more than 11,000 votes, about 6 percent.

The candidates slogging it out for the GOP presidential nomination get a few days of breathing space before the next round of primaries on April 3 when delegates in Wisconsin, Maryland and the District of Columbia will be up for grabs.

Of the candidates, Romney had the least at stake in Louisiana with polls predicting a finish behind Santorum. He has yet to win in the Deep South and wasn't expected to reverse the trend in Louisiana. Friday was the only day he spent campaigning in the state.

While Romney called Santorum to congratulate him on his Louisiana win, the two camps were already jockeying to spin the win.

"Santorum can't just win, he has to win big. He's the one who needs to 'shake up' this race. Another ho-hum win in the South doesn't cut it. He's on a political bridge to nowhere and is running out of time to change destinations," said Bruce Haynes, a GOP strategist and managing partner of Purple Strategies, a bipartisan public affairs consulting firm.

Pressure is likely to continue to mount on Gingrich to get out of the race after his Southern strategy failed, with wins only in Georgia and South Carolina.

But Gingrich vowed Saturday to stay in the race until the Republican National Convention in Florida in August.

"This is clearly still an open race," he said late Saturday. "So, on behalf of the more than 176,000 Americans who have donated to Newt 2012, I will carry our solution oriented campaign to Tampa."

On the Democrats side, President Barack Obama with 76.5 percent of the vote. Challenger John Wolfe, who has been very busy campaigning through phone calls and more, picked up 11.8 percent.

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Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum received 60.54 percent of Acadia Parish's Republicans votes.

Mitt Romney came in a distant second with 19.76 percent, Newt Gingrich with 14.96 percent in third and Ron Paul in fourth with 3.64 percent.

On the Democratic side, President Barack Obama received 55.98 percent of the vote from Democrats.

Statewide, Santorum is receiving 49.64 percent of the vote with 3454 of 4267 precincts reporting. Obama receiving 72.58 percent.

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Early votes and projections are in and former Pennsylvania Gov. Rick Santorum has been named the winner of the Louisiana Presidential Preference Primary Election held today.

Stay here for official results.

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