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BY JEFF ZELENY AND JIM RUTENBERG New York Times Service

BY NICHOLAS CONFESSORE AND MICHAEL LUO New York Times Service

Close to 60 corporations and wealthy individuals gave checks of $100,000 or more to a super PAC supporting Mitt Romney in the months leading up to the Iowa caucuses, according to documents released on Tuesday, underwriting a $17 million blitz of advertising that has swamped his Republican rivals in the early primary states. The filings to the Federal Election Commission, the first detailed look at a crucial source of support for Romney, showed his ability to win substantial backing from a small number of his party’s most influential and wealthy patrons, each contributing to the super PAC far more than the $2,500 check each could legally write to his campaign. All told, the group, Restore Our Future, raised about $18 million from just 200 donors in the second half of 2011. Millions of dollars came from financial industry executives, including Romney’s former colleagues at Bain Capital, who contributed a total of $750,000; senior executives at Goldman Sachs, who contributed $385,000; and some of the most prominent and politically active Republicans in the hedge fund world, three of whom gave $1 million each: Robert Mercer of Renaissance Technologies; Paul Singer of Elliott Management, and Julian Robertson of Tiger Management. Harlan Crow, the Texas construction magnate, gave $300,000 personally and through his company. William Koch, whose brothers Charles and David are among the country’s most prominent backers of conservative causes, gave $1 million personally or through Oxbow Carbon, the energy company he founded. Members of the Walton family, founders of the Walmart chain, gave over $200,000, while Bob Perry — a wealthy home builder who has long been the top patron of Romney’s erstwhile rival, Gov. Rick Perry of Texas — chipped in $500,000 in early December. But as Romney sailed to an overwhelming victory in Florida’s primary on Tuesday night, fund-raising documents filed by U.S. President Barack Obama showed the kind of financial juggernaut he will face if he becomes his party’s nominee: Obama reported raising a total of $140 million in 2011, far eclipsing the $57 million Romney raised for his campaign for the year.

TAMPA, Fla. — Mitt Romney rolled to victory in the Florida primary Tuesday night, dispatching an insurgent threat from Newt Gingrich and reclaiming his dominant position as he urged Republicans to rally behind his quest to capture the party’s presidential nomination. Romney’s triumph offered a

forceful response to the concerns that were raised about his candidacy only 10 days ago after a stinging loss to Gingrich in the South Carolina primary. It stripped Gingrich of his momentum and raised questions about his effort to persuade Republicans of his viability. “A competitive primary does not divide us,” Romney told his cheering supporters. “It prepares us. And we will win.”

lenge from Rick Santorum, who finished a distant third here. The growing strength of Romney was clear across nearly all segments of the Republican electorate. No state where Republicans have competed this year is more reflective of the nation’s • TURN TO FLORIDA, 2A n See you in the caucus states, Paul tells Romney, 5A

JACKPOT! TINY VILLAGE OF SODETO WINS BIG IN SPAIN’S LOTTERY BY SUZANNE DALEY

New York Times Service

SODETO, Spain — Just a few weeks ago, the 70 households in this isolated farming village were struggling under the double whammy of Spain’s economic downturn and the ravages of a severe drought. Some were even thinking of passing up Spain’s huge Christmas lottery, known as El Gordo — the fat one — which is something of a national obsession. But they bought tickets out of loyalty to the homemakers’ as-

sociation here, which makes a small percentage on the sales. And then, their number came in. All but one household in Sodeto held at least a piece of a winning ticket in the lottery’s huge first prize, $950 million, the biggest ever. Some of Sodeto’s residents, mostly farmers and unemployed construction workers, won millions. The least fortunate came away with a minimum of $130,000 — and the giddy feeling that life, in its mysterious

Associated Press

02PGA01.indd 1

He urged Republicans to focus on defeating U.S. President Barack Obama, declaring, “I stand ready to lead this party and to lead our nation.” The outcome of the Florida primary promised to reorder the field of Republican candidates. As Gingrich pledged to fight on, saying that he would resist attempts to drive him from the race, he faced a newly aggressive chal-

MARTA RAMONEDA/NEW YORK TIMES SERVICE

BY ZEINA KARAM

FOOD PRICES SOAR BY ALMOST 20 PERCENT IN CUBA, 4A

109TH YEAR I ©2012 THE MIAMI HERALD

Members of Sodeto’s Housewives Association talk with Mayor Rosa Pons, right, in a cafe in Sodeto, Spain. All but one household in Sodeto held at least a piece of a winning ticket in the El Gordo lottery’s huge first prize of $950 million.

Syrians face crackdown with humor BEIRUT — Throughout the 40 years of Assad family dictatorship, one thing united Syrians — the culture of self-censorship, fear and paranoia. But the uprising against President Bashar al Assad has unleashed a burst of blunt irreverence and black humor that would have been unthinkable before, when any satire had to be indirect or hidden. “The type of expression has now shifted, the subtlety has gone,” said Rime Allaf, associate fellow at London’s Chatham House. “Today, for the first time in recent Syrian history, people are able to get out and say it openly.” Opposition Syrians are pouring contempt on Assad using whatever medium they can, with a humor that also helps them get through the death and destruction in a crackdown that has killed more than 5,400, according to the United Nations. The Internet provides a layer of anonymity, which is vital when retribution is a real danger,

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 2, 2012

With big Fla. win, Romney back on top

GOP donors showing thirst to oust Obama

• TURN TO DONORS, 2A

INTERNATIONAL EDITION

ways, was giving them another chance. It is one of the rare bits of happy news amid the relentlessly gloomy European economic crisis, in which Spain has been one of the hardest of the hard-luck cases. But it has not come without its own cost: the village, until now just a dot on the map about three hours northwest of Barcelona, has been inundated with salesmen and fortune seekers ever since. On a recent morning, the vendors just kept showing up: bankers in suits offering high interest

Associated Press

AP FILE

but the creativity has also spilled Dictator is one of several new oninto the streets in the banners, line shows. It was created by 10 signs and songs of the protesters. Top Goon: Diaries of a Little • TURN TO SYRIA, 2A

IRAN AND HACKERS ARE TOP CONCERNS IN U.S. INTELLIGENCE REPORT, 6A

EU BLOCKS NYSE-DEUTSCHE BOERSE MERGER, BUSINESS FRONT

• TURN TO SODETO, 2A

U.S. plans changes to student exchange program BY HOLBROOK MOHR

Protesters in Kfarnebel, Edleb province, Syria, hold a placard showing Russia’s Prime Minister Vladimir Putin aiding Syria’s President Bashar al Assad.

rates, car salesman talking up BMWs and furniture dealers going door to door. Like many other local farmers, Jose Manuel Penella Cambra, who had recently invested in more efficient irrigation techniques, worried about how he would meet his payments this year. But his wife bought two tickets, worth $260,000, and his son found two more she had bought earlier and had forgotten about, bringing the total to $520,000.

catch it much more quickly when it does occur,” the memo said. Some of the most significant changes would be to ban jobs in factories, warehouses and other places like seafood packing plants. The agency also plans on “re-emphasizing the adult entertainment industry prohibition by specifically prohibiting jobs with escort services, adult book/video stores, massage parlors, and strip clubs.” It would require sponsors to “use particular prudence and caution when dealing with jobs that offer legitimate employment but also have been known to be associated with human trafficking, such as janitorial service, housekeeping and modeling agencies.” There’s also a provision aimed at protecting U.S. workers, “such as a more precise definition of temporary seasonal employment and a bar against SWT job

JACKSON, Miss. — The U.S. State Department plans major changes to a foreign exchange program that has been exploited by unscrupulous labor brokers and organized criminals in the sex industry, according to an internal memo obtained Tuesday by The Associated Press. The Jan. 18 memo comes more than a year after an AP investigation uncovered widespread abuses in the J-1 Summer Work Travel program, which annually allows more than 100,000 foreign college students to work in the United States for up to four months. It came from Adam Ereli, assistant secretary for the State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, and was addressed to Assistant Secretary of State Ann Stock. “The reforms we are undertaking will significantly reduce the opportunities for wrongdoing and • TURN TO STUDENTS, 2A

73 DEAD AS SOCCER FANS RIOT IN EGYPT, SPORTS FRONT

INDEX NEWS EXTRA...............3A U.S. NEWS ....................5A OPINION........................7A COMICS & PUZZLES ...6B

2/2/2012 4:17:58 AM


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Hoy | The Miami Herald | 2012-FEB-02  

Hoy | The Miami Herald | 2012-FEB-02

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