Mitt Romney has added to his lead in the race for delegates with a narrow victory in the Maine Republican presidential caucuses.
The former Massachusetts governor won at least eight delegates, with six delegates left to be allocated, according to an analysis by The Associated Press. Texas Rep. Ron Paul won at least seven. Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich were shut out.
Maine's local caucuses were the first step of a multi-step process to determine the state's delegates to the national convention. Romney would win the most delegates, if the candidates maintain the same level of support throughout the process.
Romney leads the overall race for delegates, with 120. Santorum has 72, Gingrich has 32 and Paul has 16. It takes 1,144 delegates to win the nomination.
Maine Republican Party Chairman Charlie Webster says Mitt Romney has won the Maine caucuses by a slim margin, giving him a much needed boost following losses in three other contests in the past week.
The former Massachusetts governor defeated Ron Paul, the only other GOP hopeful competing in the state. Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich did not actively participate in the contest.
Party leaders announced the results Saturday. The caucuses began February 4 and continued through the week. Some Maine communities have yet to hold their caucuses, though party leaders say they don't plan to count those votes.
Romney easily won the Maine caucuses in 2008.
Maine has 24 delegates to the party's national convention -- 21 of them were at stake in a process that began with the caucuses.
Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.