Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney attends a Super Tuesday Republican primary election evening in Boston, Mass., March 6, 2012. Romney and the other three candidates all mentioned economic issues in their speeches.
Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney attends a Super Tuesday Republican primary election evening in Boston, Mass., March 6, 2012. Romney and the other three candidates all mentioned economic issues in their speeches. - 

Jeremy Hobson: Any guesses about what the number one issue for voters was on Super Tuesday?

Hold onto those guesses while I give you the vote tally:

Mitt Romney won Vermont, Massachusetts, Alaska, Idaho, Virginia and -- just barely -- Ohio. Rick Santorum won Tennessee, Oklahoma and North Dakota. And Newt Gingrich won his home state of Georgia.

In state after state, exit polls show the number one issue for voters was: the economy. And it didn't take long for the candidates
to note the economy in their speeches.

For Mitt Romney, the first mention of the word "economy" came three minutes and 26 seconds in.

Mitt Romney: It's entrepreneurs like Norm Burn who are going to get America's economy back on track if we can get the government out of the way. 

For Rick Santorum, the first talk of economy was about debt, six minutes and 51 seconds into his speech.

Rick Santorum: They have systematically gone and grown the size and scale of government to beyond where -- well, it’s just unrecognizable.

Newt Gingrich mentioned Wall Street about two minutes and 40 seconds into his speech.

And Ron Paul mentioned the national  debt one minute and 5 seconds into his televised remarks. But while he was the fastest to address the economy, he didn't actually win any contests.

“I think the best compliment I can give is not to say how much your programs have taught me (a ton), but how much Marketplace has motivated me to go out and teach myself.” – Michael in Arlington, VA

As a nonprofit news organization, what matters to us is the same thing that matters to you: being a source for trustworthy, independent news that makes people smarter about business and the economy. So if Marketplace has helped you understand the economy better, make more informed financial decisions or just encouraged you to think differently, we’re asking you to give a little something back.

Become a Marketplace Investor today – in whatever amount is right for you – and keep public service journalism strong. We’re grateful for your support.

Follow Jeremy Hobson at @jeremyhobson