Sanford wins S.C. governor
Hodges defeated for re-election
COLUMBIA, South Carolina (CNN) -- Democratic Gov. Jim Hodges, seeking a second term as South Carolina's governor, was unseated by former GOP congressman Mark Sanford on Tuesday, CNN projects.
Hodges' re-election was seen as crucial for the future of state Democrats, who hoped to prove that his 1998 election win was not a fluke but a harbinger of their strength heading into the 21st century.
Sanford, a businessman first elected to the House in 1994, served three terms before deciding not to run again in 2000, citing self-imposed term limits. He beat Lt. Gov. Bob Peeler decisively in the GOP primary, setting the stage for the hotly contested showdown with Hodges.
Sanford stressed education in his gubernatorial campaign and moderated the sometimes conservative rhetoric he used on Capitol Hill.