Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum swap charges in fiery 20th debate

Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, right, makes a point as former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum lsitens during a Republican presidential debate Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2012, in Mesa, Ariz. (Jae C. Hong, Associated Press)

MESA, Ariz. — Primed for a fight, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum swapped heated accusations about the health care, earmarks and federal bailouts Wednesday night in the 20th and possibly final debate of the roller-coaster race for the Republican presidential nomination.

Texas Rep. Ron Paul chimed in, saying with a smile that Santorum was a fake conservative who had voted for programs that he now says he wants to repeal.

With pivotal primaries in Arizona and Michigan six days distant, the most animated clash of the evening focused on health care.

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