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Obama sweeps primary contests in three states
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13:41, February 10, 2008

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· U.S. Presidential Election 2008
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U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama was projected to beat Hillary Rodham Clinton in the Nebraska and Washington caucuses and Louisiana's primary on Saturday as the two are in a tied race for the party's presidential nomination.

In the mean time, Republican candidates John McCain and Mike Huckabee were too close to call in the Louisiana primary after Huckabee had won Kansas caucuses earlier the day.

Obama, the Illinois senator, completed the triumph in the first round of the post-Super Tuesday competition with his win of Louisiana at 53 percent, while New York Senator Hillary Clinton gained 39 percent with 59 percent of precincts reporting.

In Nebraska, Obama led Clinton by 68 to 32 percent, according to some 99 percent of precincts reporting.

Obama also led the New York senator with a similar edge in Washington state with 68 percent, when 96 percent of precincts' ballots counted, 31 percentage points ahead of Clinton's supporting rate.

However, Clinton still led Obama by 1,080 to 962 in the number of delegates who would vote for the party's presidential candidate at the national nomination convention in early September.

After the Super Tuesday on Feb. 5 when a total of 24 states and American Samoa held their primaries and caucuses, Obama and Clinton, the two major Democratic candidates, remained in a neck-and-neck competition.

The contest continued Saturday with the Louisiana primaries and caucuses in Nebraska, Washington and Guam that would generate 161 delegates to the nomination convention, to be allocated proportionally to candidates based on their supporting rates.

CNN exit polls in Louisiana showed that Obama dominated in the African-American votes with 82 percent of the total, but he was beat by Clinton in the popularity among white voters by 26 percent to 70 percent.

Obama retained his huge influence in the young educated voters, winning 57 percent of Louisiana college students' votes, according to the polls.

In the badly-hit state by Hurricane Katrina in 2005, among the 15 percent of voters who said had been affected by the disaster and yet to recover, 58 percent of them supported Obama while 39 percent preferred Clinton. For those who said they had recovered, Obama had less margin over Clinton of 11 percentage points.

On the Republican side, former Arkansas governor Huckabee took away all of the 36 delegates Kansas awarded to the caucuses winner.

As of 59 percent of precincts reporting in Louisiana, Huckabee led Arizona Senator McCain with 48 percent to 38 percent.

Source: Xinhua

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