Romney Wins Silver State Caucuses

Ron Paul takes second place in surprise finish
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 19, 2008 12:29 PM CST
Republican presidential hopeful former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney climbs into a pick-up truck bed to speak to supporters gathered at a polling station on Nevada caucus day in Las Vegas, Saturday,...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Mitt Romney won the Nevada Republican caucuses today, the AP reports, his second straight victory. Romney nabbed 51% of the vote with nearly all returns in. In a surprise, Ron Paul (14%) edged past John McCain (13) to take second place. Fred Thompson and Mike Huckabee both got 8%, and Rudy Giuliani 5%. Exit polls said 25% of caucusgoers were Mormon, and nine out of 10 chose Romney.

Aside from Paul, who aired TV commercials, the former Massachusetts governor was the only Republican with any significant presence in the Silver State. His main opponents were duking it out instead in South Carolina, which, though it lags Nevada in delegates, has historical appeal: Every Republican since 1980 who has won that state went on to become the GOP presidential nominee.