Politics is in the air here in New Hampshire! Voting day has arrived and as a granite stater, I must admit that this is one of the most exciting days here in years. We’ve gotten more press here in one week than in the last three years combined.
The Republican establishment darling Mitt Romney will win New Hampshire hands down. He was the governor next door for years, plus prominent political figures in NH like Judd Gregg have endorsed the candidate. He is currently leading in the primary. What will really be interesting in New Hampshire is the second-place winner.
Let’s be honest- Romney is just another big-government, slick establishment politician. In order for another candidate to beat Romney, supporters will have to coalesce around an alternative candidate. Romney only has around 30% of support in nation-wide polls, so if the other 70% can come together and support an alternative candidate, they could beat Mitt. Here is the problem though: there are three camps competing. First there are the Romney supporters, who widely support the candidate because they believe he has the best chance of beating Obama. Second, there are the Ron Paul supporters who are largely libertarians and independents. Third, there are the evangelicals who are divided between Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich. Republican voters cannot seem to agree on one candidate to be the anti-Romeny.
The second-place winner in New Hampshire is so important because that person could become the Romney alternative. It will be up to Republican voters in following states to coalesce around this candidate to beat Romney. By tonight, we’ll know who that person is. Ron Paul will likely come in second, but the evangelicals are unlikely to support Paul. Who will you be voting for, and will the results in NH affect your decision?
- New Hampshire Primary Election 2012 (huffingtonpost.com)
- New Hampshire Primary: Romney Rivals Make Final Appeals Before Vote (huffingtonpost.com)
- Rivals looking to chip away at Romney in NH (newsok.com)