DETROIT (AP) — Michigan supporters of Massachusetts Sen.
John Kerry celebrated his victory in yesterday’s New
Hampshire primary, while backers of runner-up Howard Dean vowed to
keep working toward victory in the state’s Democratic
presidential caucuses.

Laura Wong
U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich of Ohio takes a break from the primary to dine with guitarist Tim Reynolds at the Merrimack Restaurant in Manchester, N.H. yesterday. (JEFF LEHNERT/Daily)

Despite his victories in New Hampshire and last week’s
Iowa Democratic caucuses, the Kerry camp was wary of a big push by
Dean in Michigan — where 128 convention delegates are the
most awarded by a single state through February.

Even before the polls closed yesterday, the Dean campaign
hastily scheduled appearances by the former Vermont governor for
Thursday in Lansing and Sunday in Detroit. Specific times and
locations had not been determined as of yesterday night, campaign
spokeswoman Christy Setzer said.

“We’re very happy with the results in New
Hampshire,” Chris Trebilcock, spokesman for Kerry’s
Michigan campaign, said 30 minutes after The Associated Press
declared the four-term senator the winner of the primary.
“We’re trying to build our support and go toe to toe
with (Dean).

“Certainly we’re going to get a nice bounce out of
New Hampshire but by no means is everything signed, sealed and
delivered.”

Kerry planned to campaign in seven states that hold primaries or
caucuses on Feb. 3. Michigan’s caucus is scheduled for Feb.
7. “We’re not sure when he’s going to make a
visit to Michigan,” Trebilcock said.

The Dean campaign was sending 50 additional staffers into
Michigan during the next five days, joining the 20 or so already in
the state to do field work, handle the media, manage Web
communications and perform other duties, spokesman Daren Berringer
said.

Berringer expressed satisfaction with the one-time
front-runner’s showing yesterday in New Hampshire.

“I think everyone outside our campaign, from the media to
every political pundit, was expecting this campaign to be finished
after Iowa,” Berringer said.

“We’ve shown that in a week’s time we’ve
been able to rally the troops and come in a very respectable
second.”

Mark Brewer, executive chairman of the Michigan Democratic
Party, said the state’s residents would prove to be the
biggest beneficiaries of yesterday’s vote.

“Michigan looms on the horizon again,” he said.
“Again, we’re a critical proving ground. We’re
different from (Iowa and New Hampshire). … We’re
Exhibit A for the suffering from the Bush economy.”

Kerry, Bush and their rivals “will have to talk about our
issues if they want to be successful,” Brewer said.

An EPIC/MRA poll released Monday showed Kerry was the favorite
of 37 percent of the 400 likely Michigan Democratic caucus voters
polled Jan. 20 through Sunday. Dean, who led the field in an
October EPIC/MRA poll, was at 14 percent along with U.S. Sen. John
Edwards of North Carolina.

The margin of error was plus or minus 5 percentage points.
Sixteen percent of those included in the poll released Monday said
they remain undecided.

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