James Forsyth

McCain’s first step to the nomination

McCain's first step to the nomination
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John McCain’s commanding win here makes him, remarkably for a candidate who was written off for dead last summer, the favourite to be the Republican nominee in November. To be sure, he still has obstacles to come most notably his difference with the Republican base on immigration and the distrust that some of the more conservative sections of the party feel for him. But he now has the momentum to win Michigan, which would finish Romney off, and once has done that he is left facing Mike Huckabee and Giuliani who have their own more serious issues with sections of the Republican party.

The victory speech McCain delivered tonight was beautifully crafted. McCain is not a great orator but he speaks with sincerity giving the lines that he delivers a real emotional force. The speech emphasised how McCain intends to cast himself as the national security candidate and a truth teller.

Tomorrow’s papers will be dominated by the remarkable comeback of Hillary Clinton. McCain would have been better served by a solid Obama win as his triumph then would have received more attention. But tonight’s result should still be enough to help McCain push on in his quest for the nomination.

Written byJames Forsyth

James Forsyth is Political Editor of the Spectator. He is also a columnist in The Sun.

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