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(11,093 posts)
Tue Feb 2, 2016, 07:43 PM Feb 2016

In Defense of New Hampshire

First, I may have posted this before, but I can't find it. Anyway...

NH gets criticized for not being a representative population for America. I can understand it. There's no real metropolitian cities and it's pretty monochromatic.

That said, it's not a bad testing ground for a candidate getting started.

- Unlike, say, Connecticut, it's more isolated media-wise - from New York and even from Boston. There's only one or two major NH news channels, specifically WMUR, and a handle of major papers (the Union Leader, despite its conservative record, is the main one, followed by the Concord Monitor (much more progressive and even handed) and the Nashua Telegraph and maybe one more. Candidates can advertise on these specific channels and monitor the results without being drowned out by the more major city outlets (imagine if it was, say, Pittsburgh). Even Boston, which is nearest, can still be isolated for measuring results.

- A candidate can test the waters by traveling to every county - every town if they wish - in a car, and certainly from bottom (Nashua) to the top (Dixville Notch, where the first votes are cast), in a single day. Bernie (or whoever), can bounce from Nashua to Derry to Manchester, to Portsmouth, up to Lebanon and Berlin, covering the whole state in an (admittingly, tiring, day). You don't need a private plane to get from one end of the state to the other, so from that point of view, it's cost-effective for a candidate testing the waters. You can have lunch in a small diner and be sure it'll be in the paper.

- People in towns can have access to multiple candidates - from Trump to Hillary to Bernie to whoever you want - with usually not more than a 30 minute drive (longer if you're further north) to see a candidate. Some venues are packed, but others might have less than 200 people and you can usually sit front row. If I lived in L.A. or NYC, that'd never happen. So you get real people feedback. It may not be as diverse feedback, but for an initial dipstick it helps to measure that dipstick of a candidate.

- You can actually canvass the whole state, which you'd never be able to do in, say Los Angeles, much less the whole of California. If I lived in L.A, - or, hell, even Dallas or something, you'd bet I'd never see a candidate live in my life.

So, now, New Hampshire's not perfect, but it's valuable for a test candidate in many ways. And if they do well in NH, they can start to draw attention and funding to start flying around those bigger states with a bigger campaign staff.

Oh, if I haven't said so, for comparison, NH's population is about 1.3 million (voting population obviously smaller). Just to put in perspective - if you're trying to set up a ground campaign, it's much easier to do that here than, say, California (no offense - I love California, but as a newbie candidate, it would scare me).

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In Defense of New Hampshire (Original Post) Tab Feb 2016 OP
Our primary system sucks. Adrahil Feb 2016 #1
Great post! alcibiades_mystery Feb 2016 #2


(13,340 posts)
1. Our primary system sucks.
Wed Feb 3, 2016, 12:15 AM
Feb 2016

Unless you live in a priveleged state, your voice doesn't really count in the primaries.

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