Former Massachusetts governor, Mitt Romney made it two in a row with an easy win in the Nevada GOP caucus this morning to go along with his win in the Michigan primary on Tuesday. Taking a winning streak into an off week won't hurt him either with Florida voters now having just less than two weeks to consider what still remains an open race on the Republican side. While Romney's camp made a last minute decision to focus on Nevada every other candidate (well, almost every other one--Giuliani is still in Florida) was putting in time in South Carolina. The polls just closed in the Palmetto state and early exit polls indicate the economy and immigration (see 7:09pm post) were on the minds of South Carolina's Republican primary voters; a clear advantage for Huckabee. TRACKING...
7:41pm: Very early but with one percent of precincts in, McCain has a 38-23 lead over Huckabee (Look, I said it was early.).
8:05pm: Just to show you that 1% isn't representative of the entire state of South Carolina on the GOP side: McCain 34, Huckabee 30 with 12% in. This one could be fun. Third place seems like a real battle between Thompson and Romney with hovering around 14%.
9:29pm: The New York Times is calling the race for McCain. When you look at that 15% that Thompson got you can't help but wonder how much that hurt Huckabee's chances at a win in SC. He (Huckabee) has a tough row to hoe now.
Meanwhile the Democrats had a caucus in Nevada as well, where Hillary Clinton continued a streak of her own. She has now run her streak of victories to two (three if you want to count Michigan and the DNC isn't) after an initial setback in Iowa's caucuses. And boy were the polls from earlier in the week wrong. What looked like a tight three-way race for the Silver state turned into a tight two-way race as former North Carolina senator, John Edwards managed a meager four percent of the vote. Clinton and Obama split the remaining 96%, 51-45. Obama didn't seem to get the support he was hoping for from the endorsement of the Culinary Workers union. While the union's endorsement was seen as a big deal, it didn't prove influential among the rank and file members as some strayed into the Clinton camp.
While the GOP is off until Florida on January 29, the Democrats have their own primary in South Carolina next Saturday where the support of African Americans will be key to which ever candidate claims victory there.