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Donald Trump wins South Carolina primary

Posted: 4:36 PM, Feb 20, 2016
Updated: 2016-02-21 04:56:54Z

As early results come in from South Carolina, businessman Donald Trump is projected to defeat a field of five other candidates in Saturday's GOP primary. 

Trump had 33 percent of the vote, as Sens. Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio battled for second place. 

"I want to congratulate the other candidates, especially Ted and Marco, they did well," Trump said to a mixed reaction from his supporters. "There is nothing easy about running for president. It is mean, it is nasty, vicious, it is beautiful."

 
With Trump coming off a big win in New Hampshire and South Carolina, he is looking for Nevada's primary on Tuesday to propel him to a big night on March 1. Trump is starting to run up a solid lead in the number of delegates through three contests.
 
":et's go, let's have a big win in Nevada...Let's put this thing away," Trump said. "And let's make America great again."
 
In response to South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley's endorsement of Rubio, Trump credited state Lt. Gov. Henry McCaster for helping him deliver a win in the state.
 
"We have a wonderful lieutenant governor who backed us early in the process," Trump said. "I will take him over the governor anytime because we won."

Trump allowed his wife and daughter take the microphone for a few brief remarks.  

"Thank you South Carolina. This was an amazing night, the momentum has been unbelievable. Our message resonates with so many people. Thank you for being here to support us," Trump's daughter Ivanka said. 

This is Trump's second win of the campaign. He also won the New Hampshire primary on Feb. 8. 

Trump's win in South Carolina comes day after Trump got into a war of words with Pope Francis, who bashed Trump for his popular policy of building a wall along the Mexico border. 

Trump doubled down on his comments by reiterating that Mexico will pay for the United States to build the wall.

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Ohio Gov. John Kasich battled for fourth place. Ben Carson was a distant sixth. Despite another disappointing finish for Carson, he told his supporters that he is not dropping out of the race.

Bush announced during the evening that he is dropping out of the race follow Saturday's primary.

Justin Boggs is a writer for the E.W. Scripps National Desk.  Follow him on Twitter @jjboggs  or on  Facebook .