For Clinton and McCain, a New Hampshire revival
Results in the Granite State mean frontrunners in both parties will continue to duke it out for the nomination.
Voters in the New Hampshire primaries sent a message to the country Tuesday: The show's not over.Skip to next paragraph
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Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton edged out Sen. Barack Obama with the help of women voters, roaring back from defeat in Iowa and denying Mr. Obama back-to-back wins that would have smoothed his path to the Democratic nomination.
In the Republican race, Sen. John McCain coasted to victory in a state that had endorsed his independence and straight-shooting style in the 2000 primary and did so again Tuesday. Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney was runner-up for the second time in a week in states he had staked his campaign on winning.
Senator Clinton's upset followed a third-place finish in Iowa and polls Sunday showing her as many as 10 percentage points behind Obama in New Hampshire. Reports circulated Tuesday of an imminent staff shake-up.
Analysts were at a loss to fully explain the turnaround but said she may have benefited from any number of factors: a strong get-out-the-vote drive by local unions, a teary moment on the campaign trail Monday, or new sympathy for her after a rough-and-tumble debate Saturday.
Women in Iowa narrowly favored Obama, but 47 percent of women here voted for Clinton, versus 34 percent for Obama, according to exit polls. Clinton was also the favorite of registered Democrats, older voters, and residents of working-class enclaves like Manchester, the state's largest city. With fewer young voters in the mix and Senator McCain siphoning off independents, Obama was unable to sustain the momentum of his surprise win in Iowa.
McCain's victory revives his campaign. But with limited money and stiff challenges in other states, it does little to clarify the race for the Republican nomination.
A record 500,000 people – about 62 percent of registered voters – were estimated to have turned out at the polls on an unseasonably warm January day. For voters in both parties, the economy and the war in Iraq were top issues, according to exit polls.
In the Democratic primary, the results, with 96 percent of precincts reporting, were 39 percent for Clinton; 36 percent for Obama; 17 percent for former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards; 5 percent for New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson; and 1 percent for US Rep. Dennis Kucinich.