But with the much-ballyhooed
Iowa caucuses and the New Hampshire primary now in the political rearview mirror,
both the Democratic and Republican nominating races remain very much undecided.
Hillary Clinton and John McCain
In the crush of early primaries,
the candidates will get a relative breather as some Republicans head toward a
devalued Michigan primary and contests in Nevada and South Carolina, leaving Sens.
Hillary Clinton and John McCain a week to savor wins -- as well as collect new
funds for their campaigns and erase some viability concerns.
Sen. John McCain came from behind to win the Republican New Hampshire primary.
"I felt like
we all spoke from our hearts and I am so gratified that you responded," Clinton
said in victory remarks before cheering supporters in New Hampshire Tuesday. "Now
together, let's give America the kind of comeback that New Hampshire has just
She beat Iowa caucus winner Sen. Barack Obama by two percentage
points, and former Sen. John Edwards by more than 10 points.
proved himself to be a comeback specialist, a survivor who weathered more than
five years in a Vietnam POW camp, a wrenching congressional scandal and three
bouts with aggressive skin cancer.
"The people of New Hampshire have
told us again that they do not send us to Washington to serve our interests, but
to serve theirs," McCain said during his victory speech, amid chants of campaigns
new slogan, "Mac is back!"
Once considered the favorite in the
GOP field, McCain's campaign nearly collapsed last summer as he defended a plan
to give illegal immigrants an eventual path to citizenship and the troop surge
But in recent weeks, McCain shot ahead of former New York Mayor
Rudy Giuliani and finally former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney in the polls in
New Hampshire, the site of his biggest primary victory in the 2000 nominating
race against George W. Bush.
Former Gov. Mike Huckabee, the surprise Iowa
winner, came in third in New Hampshire, where there are far fewer conservative
Barack Obama and Mitt Romney
McCain's win Tuesday dealt another
hefty blow to Romney's campaign, which finished second in the Granite State despite
its deeper pockets and advertising deluge.
Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney placed second in both Iowa and New Hampshire.
Alluding to his experience running
the Olympic Games, Romney thanked largely overlooked Wyoming for his first-place
finish during that state's weekend GOP primary as he tried to put the best face
on the New Hampshire results.
"Well, another silver," he said
to his supporters. "I'd rather have a gold but I got another silver. There
have been three races so far, I've gotten two silvers and one gold."
bid got a boost Wednesday when he picked up the endorsement of the 60,000-member
Culinary Workers Union in Nevada, 10 days before that state's caucus.
Obama's victory in Iowa, the volume of calls and inquiries into his campaign had
more than doubled, with financial contributors, policy supporters and volunteers
eager to join the campaign, the New York Times reported.
Obama is also
betting big on a strong showing in South Carolina's Jan. 26 Democratic contest.
Half of all registered Democrats in the state are African-American and could opt
to back the freshman senator.
Looking ahead to the intense round of primaries,
Obama told NBC's morning show, "Right now we're in a very close contest that'll
probably go all the way through February 5th, as the voters lift the hood and
kick the tires and make an assessment who's going to really fight for them and
Edwards, who finished second in Iowa
and third in New Hampshire, pointed out to his supporters that 99 percent of the
country's population has yet to vote.
John Edwards reminded his supporters that most of the country has not voted yet.
Next on the campaign calendar is the
Michigan primary on Jan. 15, but don't expect to see any Democrats there. After
the state bucked both major political parties' rules to move up its primary date,
it will be stripped of half its Republican delegates and every Democratic delegate.
crown jewel of the primary season -- contests in 22 states on Feb. 5 -- still
looms on the horizon for the remaining candidates, none of whom immediately announced
plans to drop out after New Hampshire's vote.