Thanking Voters, McCain Revels in Win
By Michael D. Shear, Juliet Eilperin and Ed O'Keefe
MANCHESTER, N.H. -- Arizona Sen. John McCain claimed victory in the New Hampshire primary Tuesday night by embracing the joy of an unexpected comeback and declaring his intention to bring his brand of straight talk to the White House.
"When the pundits declared us finished, I told 'em, I'm going to New Hampshire, where the voters don't let you make their decision for them....I'm going to New Hampshire and I'm going to tell them the truth."
McCain spoke for more than 10 minutes, thanking the voters of the Granite State, who for the second time have rewarded him with a victory. In 2000, McCain upset then-Texas governor George Bush by a huge margin in New Hampshire.
"I talked to the people of New Hampshire...Sometimes I argued with you," he said. "You did me the great honor of listening. The people of New Hampshire have told us again that we don't go to Washington to serve our self-interest but to serve theirs."
He also spoke of the challenges facing the country, saying, "The work that we face in our time is great, but our opportunities greater still." He added solemnly, "We are the makers of history, not its victims....We must all pull together in this critical hour."
McCain vowed to take his campaign forward to win the nomination, something that Bush stopped him from doing eight years ago.
"We celebrate one victory tonight, and leave for Michigan tomorrow to win another," he said.
A transcript of McCain's speech is available here.
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