Senator Barack Obama (D-Ill.) won the Wisconsin primary by a wide margin last night, taking his ninth consecutive primary or caucus.
He is now a clear frontrunner going into the March 4 primaries in delegate-rich Ohio and Texas. Obama leads his rival, Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) with 1,294 delegates to her 1,234.
With 91 percent of precincts reporting, Obama had won 58 percent of the popular vote to Clinton's 41. This decisive victory further accentuates the importance of the Ohio and Texas primaries for Clinton. Her campaign has indicated that these contests are of virtual do-or-die importance.
Obama stumped in Wisconsin twice as much as Clinton did, making 12 appearances to her six in the Badger State.
Obama seems to have embraced his front-runner status in recent days, remolding his message for a protracted campaign against Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), the presumptive nominee for the Republican nomination. "The change we seek is still months and miles away," Obama said to supporters in Houston last night.
There were also primaries in Hawaii and Washington Tuesday. The Hawaii primary results came in too late for this printing. The Washington primaries did not have any bearing on the convention, as the Feb. 14 caucus in that state determined the allotment of all delegates other than superdelegates.
McCain won the Republican primaries in Washington and Wisconsin yesterday. McCain prevailed easily in the contests, which were both tied to delegates.
But long-shot challenger Mike Huckabee, the former governor of Arkansas, vowed to keep campaigning. "Some of you have suggested that the reason I keep going is maybe just there's some ego trip," Huckabee said Tuesday. But the former pastor denied this, saying he felt a responsibility to continue fighting for his conservative ideals in a race now dominated by McCain, whom many see as a centrist.
"It's about convictions and it's about principles that I dearly, dearly believe in," he said.
© 2008 Tufts Daily via U-WIRE