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Tuesday, January 16, 2007
McCain gets key South Carolina endorsement
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Likely presidential contender Sen. John McCain picked up a key supporter Tuesday in the crucial primary state of South Carolina.

South Carolina House Speaker Bobby Harrell has signed on to co-chair McCain's exploratory committee in the Palmetto State. Harrell, an influential Republican in the state, supported then-Texas Gov. George W. Bush over McCain in the 2000 campaign.

"Senator McCain is the best qualified candidate to win the war against global terror, reduce government spending, reform the broken power structure in Washington, and reconnect government to the faith and trust of the American people," Harrell said in a statement.

McCain and Harrell -- along with Sen. Lindsey Graham and state Attorney General Henry McMaster -- are touring the state today to promote the endorsement.

-- CNN's Robert Yoon and Alexander Mooney