Republicans Descend on South Carolina

Republican presidential contender Sen. John McCain speaks at a campaign rally at The Citadel

Republican presidential contender Sen. John McCain speaks at a campaign rally at The Citadel in Charleston, S.C. Stephen Morton/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Stephen Morton/Getty Images

Republican presidential hopefuls are meeting tonight in Myrtle Beach, S.C., for a debate to air on Fox News. On Jan. 19, South Carolina will hold the first Southern primary of the year, and the first in a predominantly Republican state.

The state contest will be a tough test for Sen. John McCain, even after his win in New Hampshire. Independents, who gave the Arizona senator much support, will not be able to vote in the South Carolina race.

That could bode well for former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, who has appealed to evangelical Christians, the same kind of voters who strongly supported the former Baptist minister in Iowa.

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who lost in Iowa and New Hampshire, has pinned his hopes on Michigan, which votes next week. And he has cut back his efforts in another early contest, pulling his ads in South Carolina.

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