Tonight's result had Mitt Romney in the lead but only just. The full result was Mitt Romney 39%, Ron Paul, 36%, Rick Santorum 18% and Newt Gingrich bringing up the rear with the left overs.
Romney also was flavour of the week at the Conserative Washington annual event
CPAC. It is worth noting that Santorum and Gingrich did not actively compete in Maine. This means that their results were perhaps to be expected. For Mitt Romney it may only be a slender victory but Ron Paul has been a Maine favourite in the past.
The Nominees now have a little over two weeks in order to gather their thoughts and decide on the next steps their campaigns will take. February 28 Arizona and Michigan will hold their primaries. That gives all the nominees plenty of time to debate and persuade.