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US Presidential Hopefuls Campaign for 'Super Tuesday'

The four main U.S. presidential hopefuls are campaigning across the country ahead of next week's so-called "Super Tuesday" political showdown when more than 20 states hold primary elections or caucuses.

Republican Senator John McCain of Arizona and Democratic Senator Barack Obama of Illinois won a key endorsement Friday from the "Los Angeles Times" newspaper. The endorsement could give the candidates an extra boost of support when voters in the delegate-rich western state of California head to the polls Tuesday.

Obama faces a tight contest with Democratic Senator Hillary Clinton of New York, while McCain is competing against former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney for the Republican nomination.

The Republican candidates are also competing in minor caucuses in the northeastern state of Maine, where voting began Friday and continues until Sunday. Voters gather at small community meetings to express their preference for a presidential nominee, though a win will give the candidate nothing more than a political boost.

At stake Tuesday for the Democrats are more than 1,600 of the 2,025 delegates needed to win the party's nomination for the general election in November. For the Republicans, the 22 state elections and caucuses Tuesday represent more than 1,000 of the 1,191 delegates needed to clinch the party's nomination.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.