Blogs > HNN > NEW HAMPSHIRE PRIMARY SPECIAL: Historians Comment

Jan 9, 2008 4:20 pm


NEW HAMPSHIRE PRIMARY SPECIAL: Historians Comment



PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN 2008 WATCH:

NEW HAMPSHIRE PRIMARY SPECIAL: Historians Comment

  • Allan Lichtman on Hillary's Big Win:".... This could go all the way to South Dakota in June..."The women came home. Hillary Clinton yesterday made history by becoming the first woman in American history to win a major party primary, and she did it with the women. She was 12 points ahead or so among women voters, 11 points behind among male voters, and therein lies her victory....Never underestimate the persuasive power of Bill Clinton... CTV, 1-9-08
  • Allan Lichtman: New Hampshire leaves White House race wide open (Video) - CTV, 1-9-08
  • Allan Lichtman on the Republican side:"Let's not again make the mistake that one swallow makes the spring. How well is McCain going to play in the South? He could even lose to (Mitt) Romney in Michigan (on Jan. 15)." - CTV, 1-9-08
  • Gil Troy: Center Field: Making elections real events not 'pseudo events' - Jerusalem Post/HNN, , 1-9-08
  • Julian Zelizer:"He could rise again if he does get a win in Michigan, so I think it's pretty premature to write him off. But losing New Hampshire definitely hurts him. It creates the perception of someone who is losing, which is one of the most devastating things in this primary process because it gets voters nervous." - Reuters, 1-9-08
  • Ted Widmer:"Still, unlike other candidates' spouses, Mr. Clinton will always bring rock star expectations. At first it’s disorienting to see him anywhere that isn't the center." -- NYT, 1-9-08
  • N.H. Primary Built on a History of Tradition, People Power Presidential historians and analysts consider the role that New Hampshire's historically independent electorate has played in past primaries and discuss how the creation of the state's contest was intended to open up the process and"give it to the people." (mp3) - Newshour with Jim Lehrer, 1-8-08
  • Michael Beschloss:"Well, you know, New Hampshire, I guess like everything else, it just is not what it used to be. It used to be the first test of what people thought about presidents and also gave you a good idea where the public was. Maybe the most vintage New Hampshire primary was 1968, Eugene McCarthy, the anti-war Vietnam war candidate, was running against an incumbent president, Lyndon Johnson, almost won, the first big sign that Vietnam was going to be a big issue in presidential politics that year. In recent years now, you not only have the Iowa caucus first, but also a very small amount of time between those two events, now, of course, five days. And in recent years, I think it has not been by accident that in 2000 and 2004, on the Democratic side, New Hampshire confirmed the result of the Iowa caucuses." - Newshour with Jim Lehrer, 1-8-08
  • Michael Beschloss:"It is so easy for independents, for instance, to go in -- we're seeing it today -- and vote in a Democratic primary that you oftentimes have a result that is largely shaped by people who are not traditional Democrats." - Newshour with Jim Lehrer, 1-8-08
  • Richard Norton Smith: Well, that's true, but it's also where the independents go. I mean, we all know that in 2000, for example, the Al Gore people thought there was a real chance that they were going to lose the New Hampshire primary to Bill Bradley. Their polls were suggesting that if independents broke the way they thought they would, for example, that Bradley, who had a very much this kind of insurgent appeal, would win. In fact, at the last minute, the independents voted overwhelmingly for John McCain, and it really was the end of the Bradley candidacy and it was the making of John McCain. And we're seeing if history repeats itself tonight. - Newshour with Jim Lehrer, 1-8-08
  • Ellen Fitzpatrick:"Well, it goes really back to the early 20th century and the construction of the primary system itself, which was a reform of the progressive era. The idea was to try to take the decision over who the party's nominee would be out of the smoke-filled rooms and away from the party bosses and to give it to the people. And what has happened, New Hampshire put that process in place. The legislature approved it in 1913. And over the course of the 20th century, each time it modified the rules, it did so in ways to open access to more and more voters to participate in the process. It drew on a strong tradition of local government and, in fact, was designed to coincide initially with the annual town meeting. And it has been said that the idea was the frugal New Hampshirites wanted to save money and only light the town hall twice -- excuse me, light it once, when they could have the primary and the town meeting on the same day. That's how it got to be in March initially." - Newshour with Jim Lehrer, 1-8-08
  • Ellen Fitzpatrick:"You have in New Hampshire extremely independent voters, not just by the fact that there's a large number of independents, but even within the parties they have been unpredictable. And it gives a kind of power to the whole conversation." - Newshour with Jim Lehrer, 1-8-08
  • Bruce Schulman: Clinton's self-deprecating response during Saturday’s ABC/Facebook debate when asked why New Hampshire voters seemed to like Obama more."Well," she replied,"that hurts my feelings." Bruce Schulman, Boston University political history professor, said it was a winning moment for Clinton."She was very coy and funny," he said. - Boston Herald, 1-9-08
  • Angela Davis:"(Obama) is being consumed as the embodiment of color-blindness. It's the notion that we have moved beyond racism by not taking race into account. That’s what makes him conceivable as a presidential candidate. He's become the model of diversity in this period, and what's interesting about his campaign is that it has not sought to invoke engagements with race other than those that have already existed." - blogs.cqpolitics.com, 1-9-08
  • Timothy McCarthy:"There is a stream of optimism that runs through American politics and persists. The founding fathers were dreamers: Jefferson took Locke's 'life, liberty and property' and turned it into 'life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness'." - Guardian (UK), 1-8-08
  • Allan Lichtman:"The value of the early primaries is precisely to have a slingshot effect, to propel you towards victory in the later primaries....Independents play a huge role in the New Hampshire primary because they can choose to vote in either the Republican or Democratic primaries. They could be a large segment of the vote in a very small state and a very independent-minded state like New Hampshire." - VOA, 1-6-08
  • Stephen Hess:"These people have been studying. They almost feel that they can not vote for the candidate unless they have personally looked him in his eye and shook his hand." - VOA, 1-6-08



comments powered by Disqus