McCain Looking for a Lucky Streak
By Juliet Eilperin
ABOARD THE MCCAIN CAMPAIGN PLANE--Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) may be the winner of the New Hampshire primary, but he is also a man of superstition.
It's not just that he stayed in the same hotel suite in Nashua that he stayed in during his 2000 primary victory, or that he held his victory party in the identical ballroom. He believes in doing the same things repeatedly to bolster his luck, such as giving a speech at the Citadel in Charleston, S.C. tonight, just as he ended his "No Surrender" tour there last year.
"All of it's ritual, all of it's superstition," he explained, rifling through his pockets to find the lucky penny he received on Tuesday from Joseph W. McQuaid, the publisher of New Hampshire's Union Leader. McQuaid had championed the senator's cause, urging voters to pick McCain, so when he found a penny heads up on the day of the primary, he handed it over to the senator as a charm.
"If I ever lose that penny, I'm doomed," McCain told reporters, laughing.
Still, the GOP presidential hopeful assured the press corps he would not be hewing exactly to tradition as he campaigned in South Carolina, in light of the fact that he lost to George W. Bush in the 2000 presidential primary there.
"I hope not," he said when asked if he would stay in the same hotels he frequented eight years ago as he stumped in the Palmetto State. Instead, he suggested, he would do "everything different."
McCain also confessed that he hates seeing the number 13 on anything, but loves the number 11, and has chosen it on occasion when he has "made a contribution to the economy of Las Vegas." (Translation: that's where he puts his money when he plays craps.) When told that former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney had outlines 13 items on his "to do list" while wooing New Hampshire voters this week, McCain simply replied, "That explains it."
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