Obama Team Sees South Carolina as Key to Victory

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Senior Editor Dan Gilgoff reports:

An adviser to Barack Obama's presidential campaign says the Democratic senator from Illinois is increasingly looking to South Carolina as his best shot at guaranteeing a victory in next year's early primary states.

The Obama campaign, according to the adviser, believes whichever candidate hopes to win next year's Democratic nomination will need to score a number of second-place finishes in the early primary caucus states--which are expected to include Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, and South Carolina, in that order and all in January--and at least one first-place finish in those states.

The campaign believes it has an especially strong shot in South Carolina because Obama, who would be the nation's first African-American president, stands to appeal to blacks, who may constitute up to half of voters in the state's Democratic primary. Obama and Democratic rival Hillary Clinton have both stepped up their African-American outreach efforts in recent weeks.