THE ONCE AND PRESENT FRONTRUNNER

PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images

McCain victory speech: “Thank you, South Carolina, for bringing us across the finish line first in the first-in-the-South primary. It took us a while, but what’s eight years among friends?” Read full speech here. Watch video here.

 

On to Florida for Palmetto State victor — tells the AP post-win: “We’ve got a long way to go.”

 

Redemption and renewal — and some new challenges.

 

McCain camp: I am confident that voters in Florida will make a similar decision…” Full statement here.

 

CNN election results (with 97% of precincts reporting):
McCain 33%, Huckabee 30%, Thompson 16%, Romney 15%, Paul 4%, Giuliani 2%.

 

Read exit poll analysis here.

 

HALPERIN’S TAKE: What’s next for McCain?

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