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Who did best among their neighbors?

February 6, 2008 |  9:53 am

In sports, one key to success is establishing home field advantage. Presidential candidates don't get to play as many home games as sports teams, but for them, it's almost required that they win on their own turf.

One of Super Tuesday's quirks was that five of the six White House contenders still standing got to cast primary ballots in their own states. Each held serve. But which one rolled up the most impressive margin?

Republican Mike Huckabee (who, overall, was the candidate who most surpassed expectations for the day).

With the vote not quite complete in Arkansas (some states are more efficient than others), Huckabee led second-place finisher John McCain ...

by 40 percentage points.

Democrat Barack Obama also performed impressively in his backyard, carrying Illinois over Hillary Clinton by 31 points.

Clinton, for her part, won New York by 17 points (a margin the Obama camp was hoping to cut into a bit).

McCain, who often has battled with fellow Republicans in Arizona, beat Mitt Romney there by a less-than-impressive 13 points (with Huckabee far behind both).

And Romney, in a showing emblematic of a disappointing outcome nationwide, struggled the most in his home state, defeating McCain in Massachusetts by 10 points. Huckabee performed especially poorly in the Bay State; with 4%, he barely edged out Ron Paul for third place.

Paul, by the way, gets his shot at a home court win on March 4, when Texas holds its primary. Now THAT would be a story.

-- Don Frederick