This was an important victory for McCain. He had lost in Michigan, a state in which he was running ahead until the final days, and he needed a victory here for momentum into Florida. His victory is all the more important because this is a Southern state, rich in evangelical votes, and McCain proved he could run strongly there.
With 93% of precincts reporting:
This surely spells the end for Thompson. South Carolina is where he said he would make his stand. Now take a seat.
McCain, Giuliani, Romney, and Huckabee are closely bunched in Florida. RealClearPolitics.com’s average of six recent polls yields this result:
Florida is a winner-take-all primary.
On the Democratic side, Clinton has a huge lead over Obama (19 points). This is a well oiled machine except for the candidate herself. It’s going to be hard for Obama to match her in the delegate rich states in organization and experience.