By Joe Kerry
- Up until 1992 it was an absolute barometer of who was going to win the Presidency; prior to 1992 the person who won NH went on to eventually win the White House; in 1992-BILL CLINTON lost New Hampshire to Paul Tsongas (remember him?) but went on to win the Presidency; in 2000 GW BUSH lost NH to none other than JOHN McCain but also went on to win the White House.
- In 2000 McCain won the NH Republican primary but imploded in South Carolina-why? In New Hampshire, INDEPENDENTS get to vote in the Democrat and Republican primary-and in 2000 GW BUSH beat McCain among registered Republicans, but INDEPENDENTS, who accounted for 41 percent of the total GOP turnout, tipped the GOP primary to McCain;
- Yesterday's primary tells a VERY SIMILAR STORY: among those primary voters who identified themselves as REPUBLICANS McCain won 34% to Romney's 33%--so among the party faithful a very close contest; INDEPENDENTS however went for McCain 39% to 27% McCain over Romney. According to exit polling data 37% of those voting in the Republican primary self-identified themselves as INDEPENDENTS-more than enough to tip the primary to McCain-so the loss, on this basis, is not as BAD as the loss, on its face, would suggest.
New Hampshire Voting Tid-Bits
Why were the polls so wrong? Some polls, right up until the voting showed Obama with a double digit lead over Clinton-then Clinton pulls out a win-a few reasons for this:
- 14% of Democrats voting didn't make up their mind until election day-so pollsters had no way of knowing who this decisive group of people were going to vote;
- Obama is pulling in tens-of-thousands of new younger voters who are registering to vote and telling pollsters they are going to vote; unfortunately for Obama, this same group of voters is notoriously known for "overpromising and under-delivering"-they tell pollsters they are going to vote on primary day-and they tell them they are going to vote for Obama-but in NH, unlike Iowa, this group couldn't push Obama over the top;
- One theory also working the rounds is that with Obama's lead being in the double digits, many liberal independents opted to vote for McCain in the Republican Primary in order to undercut Romney's momentum-thereby guaranteeing a prolonged and protracted GOP fight
- Women Came Home. Unlike Iowa where Clinton lost the female vote to Obama by 5%, in NH Clinton beat Obama 46%-34% (foxnews);
- All Evangelicals are NOT alike. In Iowa, Mike Huckabee cleaned up on the evangelical Christian vote. In NH, exit polling data showed that Huckabee received only 32% of their votes compared to McCain who pulled in 31%. (Note: compared with the Iowa caucuses, where 60 percent of Republicans described themselves as evangelicals, exit polls in New Hampshire put evangelical turnout at about 21 percent),
- Romney's loss is greater than appears on paper. Over 60% of New Hampshire residents watch news channels from Massachusetts-so Romney has had a lot of exposure there given his former position as governor of that state-but despite all of that exposure for so many years-he was unable to pull out a win-that's a very bad sign-especially when you consider he outspent-Michigan, where Romney's father was once governor is fast becoming a MUST win state for Romney.