Romney wins New Hampshire primary, CNN projects 

click to enlarge Mitt Romney supporters cheer as a TV network declares former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney the winner as polls close at his New Hampshire primary night rally in Manchester, New Hampshire, January 10, 2012. - JIM BOURG /REUTERS
  • Jim Bourg /Reuters
  • Mitt Romney supporters cheer as a TV network declares former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney the winner as polls close at his New Hampshire primary night rally in Manchester, New Hampshire, January 10, 2012.

MANCHESTER, N.H. - Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney won the New Hampshire Republican U.S. presidential primary on Tuesday by a comfortable margin in the second nominating contest of the 2012 election season, CNN projected.

The network said with more than 10 percent of the vote counted, Romney won 36 percent of the vote and congressman Ron Paul was second with 25 percent.

The primary in New Hampshire, a small northeastern U.S. state that often plays an outsized role in presidential campaigns, is the second contest in the state-by-state battle for the Republican nomination to face Democratic President Barack Obama on Nov. 6. Romney narrowly won the first contest, the Iowa caucuses, on Jan. 3.

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