(CNN) - John McCain clinched the Republican nomination tonight with big wins in Texas and Ohio.
But looking at the exit polls out of Texas - a state McCain must carry in the general election to win the presidency - trouble remains for the Arizona senator.
Despite the fact McCain is certain to carry his party's banner in the general election, he only narrowly carried Texas conservatives over Huckabee (48-40 percent). They made up more than two-thirds of all Texas Republican voters, and it is imperative they show up to vote for McCain in November. Also, McCain only managed to tie Huckabee among late deciders, another indication many Republicans aren't ready to rally behind McCain.
Another troubling statistic: More Texas Republican voters said they were looking for a candidate that shares their values over any other quality - and those voters picked Huckabee by 25 points over McCain (57-32 percent).
Translation: McCain captured his party's nomination tonight, but he still has a lot of work ahead of him to convince the base he's their guy.
Related: Watch McCain speak to supporters about being the Republican nominee
–CNN's Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider
Darth: Turnout does not matter, the republican race had been decided for long. Or you wanna suggest that the Dem candidate will carry Texas by 65%?
Mobilization is important, McCain needs to mobilize the evangelicals in November. For this reason Clinton would be a horrible idea. Someone strong in Ohio or Florida shd be chosen, because the south shd be taken for granted. If the south falls for McCain, then it's over anyway.
I like you Senator, you're cool! I got your back too, I don't think you're dumb also. PLus, you party before! That's an A+ baby....
DR, you said it! I can't believe CNN publishes Schneider's rubbish. Blinded by the Obama light I guess?
Don't worry McCain!
If Hillary gets the nod from the Democrats, there will be plenty of Democrats and Independents headed his way, including me.
I am a strong supporter of Obama, but in no way will I ever vote for Hillary again (I voted for her in NY) after she has proudly displayed her complete absence of integrity.
Ii voted in TEXAS and participated (tried to) in the caucus. The amount of blantant fraud that was being perpetrated at the polling places is unREAL!. People are being turned away, lied to and misguided. Politics in TEXAS are as FRADULENT as EVER. I WAS a HILLARY Supporter until I witnessed the acts that people are going through to put her on the ballot. This reminded me that it was HILLARY that was the 'brains behind the CLINTON comeback kid matra". If you are truly interested in new reporting you could report on the fraud that was perpetrated in South Dallas county and keep your new organization busy into the next presidential election serious (2012).
I now understand the determination of my forefathers when they stood up for their rights. I will NEVER miss another election and I vow to get involved in the campaign of whom ever else I decide to support.
I have always voted Republican, however in this election I won't because McCain is not a conservative. He said it best, "I am a conservative, liberal republican!!!" Never going to win and I am ok with that
McCain will beat these two scrubs for the Democrats. There's not just buyers remorse for Obama, but for Clinton as well. The Dems blew it and McCain will be the next president because of it.
No trouble for McCain at all. Tune in in November to watch the Democrats once again snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.
There is no unified Republican Party. There are the ideological evangelicals; there are the 'keep America strong' through military strength at all costs faction; there are the financial elites who laugh privately at their own windfall of tax cuts and invisible hand theory advocates; there are the fiscal conservatives who are in identity crisis still since Democrats are more fiscally responsible; there are the Gingrich/Limbaugh/pro-militia folks who want to destroy federal government at any costs (with no clue how to govern in the absence of government); there are the xenophobes who think they are the first Americans; and, there are the poor folks who watch some TV pundits for all their information as if they were gods... Such a bunch. I love my America, worts and all...
same thing again, lesser of the two evils
Perhaps those that would have voted for McCain voted Democrat for Obama.
I am not sure which world does this writer live? McCain has no need to worry about conservative vote in general election, there is no chance that they can tolerant either Hillary or Obama.
C. Mason, I must concur. I like watching the conservatives fight it out amongst themselves who is the most truly ignorant. Too bad McCain, otherwise not a bad guy, suddenly finds himself in bed with these Middles Ages loonies.
McCain is too old. I'm almost 30... I've never met a 70+ year old that had any clue what issues are relevant to my generation. Under 35 will stray away from him for someone that remotely relates to them.
Not all conservatives are religous. Many, if not most of us believe in the ideas of individual liberty and self determination enshrined in our Constitiution. Factories and jobs are leaving Ohio and Michigan for Texas and Alabama because of high taxes, regulation, and unions. Both of those Northern states are Democrat strongholds and Obama and Hillary want to impose their failed policies on all of us and call it change. I think most conservatives, economic and religious, will support McCain over either of those two. McCain is least worst for the country.
Looks like Ron Paul is in perfect position now with Huck out.
Why would McCain have to convince his base that he's their guy? Who else will the conservatives vote for? Obama? No.... Clinton? NO!!
This is a non-story. The US elections are all about the middle of the road. McCain is a strong candidate. When debate time comes, this will be apparent.
Does obama or clinton know how our military is structured and what the responsibilities of the CINC? Think about it, would you hire an electrician who knows nothing about electricity or wiring fundamentals? In a time of war, we need someone who will make rational, informed, decisions about military strategy.... given the CURRENT situation.
Rash, uninformed, ill-advised decisions will get a LOT of people killed.
"So, Obama wanted Hilary Clinton to stop campaigning if she lost Texas and Ohio.
Mr. Obama you should stop campaigning if you lose those states!"
Hmm, no, I disagree. It would be virtually impossible for Clinton to get more pledged delegates. Obama, on the other hand, will almost certainly win.
That's the difference.
TWO losers won tonight.
OBAMA 2008-Let us win the nomination!!!!Great chance we have!!!!!
I wont vote for Hillary or Macain, hasnt Bush done enough, hasnt Bill done enough. Im a democrat who lost and I guess will continue to lose. RE. Private David Joseph Brangman
well im a democrat and i must say im VERY disappointed in my party right now...There's no way Hillary will get so nom so why not get behind the front runner(Obama) so we can shift our focus on the general elections??????Atleast the republicans are smart enuff to get behind their front runner regardless if they like him or not!
It is sad to see that McCain abandoned his policy to join with Bush and Karl Rove to advance his lust for presidency. It is also irony to see that our country is heading to recession and McCain and Republican Party is far from realization about the facts that we need to put more of our debates and attention to our state of the economy instead of preemptive plan for wars to come.
We are spending 12 billions dollar a month to Iraq war to settle the civil war there and our country people are facing enormous pressure from health care, housing, living and energy cost. McCain does not care enough to talk about economy nor does he care to offer health care solution. He can enjoy federal health care but he does not want to share that with American people.
McCain is same like Bush and McCain presidency will be the third term of Bush doctrine.
Obama is the answer of Hope and Change and a new direction for our country.
Mr. Schneider is right. A substantial number of conservatives will not vote for Mr. McCain. Many have told me they will stay home or write in Mr. Huckabee's name.
Others plan to vote for the Democratic candidate. And those holding their nose and voting for McCain will not be energized as would be necessary for McCain to win.
It would appear that the current phrase, "get a clue" would be an appropiate one for Mr. McCain and his supporters.
This is the stupidest story I've seen. He's the Republican nominee...who the heck are the ultra conservatives going to vote for if not for McCain? He doesn't have to convince anyone anything...are they really going to vote for Hillary or Barack over him? The answer coming up after the break.......
Welcome back! The answer to the question is NO ABSOLUTELY NOT
Did Governor Huckabee hurt himself, or the Repulican Party, by staying int he ract until tonight? No. In fact, his staying in would have allowed the Party to garner more on the Democrats, more ammunition for their ads, polling strategy, and talking points. Why not let the Dems go after each other another month or two?