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Clinton, McCain Embrace Comeback in N. Hampshire

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  • McCain
    (Photo: AP Images / Charles Dharapak)
    Republican presidential hopeful Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and his wife Cindy, left, greet supporters at his post primary election victory party in Nashua, N.H., Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2008.
  • McCain
    (Photo: AP Images / Charles Dharapak)
    Republican presidential hopeful Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and his wife Cindy wave to supporters on election night in Nashua, N.H., Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2008. McCain won the New Hampshire Republican primary, completing a remarkable comeback and climbing back into contention for the presidential nomination.
  • Hillary Clinton
    (Photo: AP Images / Jim Cole)
    Supporters cheer as Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., takes the stage in Manchester, N.H., Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2008, after her Democratic primary win in the state.
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By Jennifer Riley, Christian Post Reporter
January 9, 2008|11:20 am

Sens. Hillary Clinton and John McCain embraced much-needed New Hampshire wins that helped revitalize what were faltering presidential campaigns after Iowa.

Clinton had 39 percent of the vote in New Hampshire, compared to Barack Obama’s 37 percent, and John Edwards’ 17 percent, according to CNN. The win was especially surprising for Clinton, who had trailed Obama by double digits in recent polls.

On the Republican side, McCain won with 37 percent and second-place finisher Mitt Romney garnered 32 percent of the vote. Mike Huckabee came in third with 11 percent, followed by Rudy Giuliani at nine percent, and Ron Paul at eight percent. Former Tennessee Senator Fred Thompson received one percent of the vote.

Both Clinton and McCain had come off of a disappointing third-place finish in Iowa, where younger and less-likely winners Obama and Huckabee had easily won the first state to hold a party caucus.

“I’m past the age when I can claim the noun ‘kid,’ no matter what adjective precedes it, but we sure showed them what a comeback looks like,” said McCain, 71, to supporters after his win was announced.

McCain beat out Romney, who held a double digit lead in New Hampshire before Christmas. Former Massachusetts governor Romney came in second as he did in Iowa, but won the Wyoming caucuses on Saturday.

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Meanwhile, Iowa winner, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, suffered from the Granite State’s smaller population of religious voters. About 14 percent of voters who attended the Republican primary were religious. In Iowa, more than half of the caucusgoers were self-described “born-again” or evangelical Christians.

Huckabee, a former Baptist preacher, has depended heavily on evangelical voters for support in his bid for the Republican nomination.

In addition to the smaller religious population, Huckabee also lost to McCain in votes from residents who said a candidate’s religious belief mattered a great deal to them. According to CNN exit polls, McCain captured 35 percent of the votes from this group, compared to Huckabee’s 31 percent.

Nonetheless, the Arkansas Republican said he would be happy with a third place finish, which would give him enough momentum to campaign in the upcoming state of South Carolina, where he has strong support among the state’s large population of evangelical voters.

The Democratic and the Republican candidates head to Michigan for the next primary on Jan. 15.

 

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