MANCHESTER – Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney won a convincing victory in the New Hampshire primary, the second straight triumph for Romney and one that bolsters his front-runner status to take on President Barack Obama in November, CNN said.
All six Republican contenders headed to South Carolina on Wednesday ahead of the next primary. With 95% of precincts reporting, Romney received 40% of the vote in Tuesday’s balloting. Texas Rep. Ron Paul received 23% and former Utah Gov. and U.S. Ambassador Jon Huntsman garnered 17%.
Romney’s sweep of the first two contests for the GOP nomination made history. It was the first time a non-incumbent Republican won both the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire’s first-in-the-nation primary. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum came in with 10% and 9%, respectively.
Romney told CNN Wednesday he does not plan to discount the other candidates and noted he has “a long way to go” to secure the GOP nomination. However, he said, “I really think we’re best off focusing on the failures of this president.” He said he believes voters want to hear his plans for restoring rising incomes and job growth.