South Carolina — With his Republican rivals jockeying for victory in New Hampshire, presidential hopeful Fred Thompson sought Tuesday to boost his support in this early voting state considered critical to his campaign.
"I don't know of any better place to stand my ground and test my case than in South Carolina," Thompson told a couple of hundred people at a pancake house in the northern part of the state as he began an 11-day bus tour.
He said the results in New Hampshire and in Michigan on Jan. 15 will factor into whether he stays in the race, but that South Carolina will be key.
"This is where we make our stand - this is where I have chosen to make my stand," Thompson told a crowd at a barbecue restaurant. He later told reporters he needs to do well in South Carolina, which votes Jan. 19.
"There's no question about it. It could prove at the end of the day that South Carolina is determinative as far as I'm concerned, but we're not there yet," he said.