Why the New Hampshire Primary is a Nuisance

Why the New Hampshire Primary is a Nuisance

A dispatch from the Granite State.

(Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Chris Christie once called New Hampshire voters “presidential wine tasters.” And while I promise we have no desire to taste Governor Christie, or any of these other freaks, we do like to kick the tires before America buys the car. 

Last year, the Democratic National Committee decided the New Hampshire primary’s first-in-the-nation status would be given to South Carolina. Allegedly, this was to be done in the name of social justice: the Granite State’s population is only 2 percent black, compared to 26 percent in the Palmetto State. A tiny state full of old white dudes in flannels should not be allowed to set the tone for the whole Free World. Or so they argue. The fact that New Hampshire went for Bernie Sanders (followed by Mayor Pete, then Amy Klobuchar, then Liz Warren, and then Joe Biden) in 2020 has nothing to do with it. How could you suggest such a thing?

Anyway. In a rare and admirable display of local patriotism, the New Hampshire Democratic Party refused to comply with the DNC. Even after Joe Biden endorsed the new order, the NHDP refused to budge. Even when he refused to appear on the state’s ballot, they stood strong. 

This act of defiance was especially brave given that the national committee will almost certainly strip the state party of delegates to the national convention. Then again, if the NHDP had allowed South Carolina to hold the first primary, they would all be looking for new jobs. It’s been a bad year. The Patriots had their worst season since 1969. Illegal immigrants from Mexico are now sneaking across the Canadian border into the Granite State. Besides, we’re still not over the Old Man on the Mountain. If we’d lost our first-in-the-nation status, his wouldn’t be the only head to roll. 

The cogs of the Democrat machine never stop rolling, however. Right across the front page of my Sunday Union-Leader is a banner ad from NHDP. It’s got a picture of Uncle Joe, all smiles, and it says: “STOP TRUMP WRITE-IN JOE BIDEN ON TUESDAY, JANUARY 23 Because Our Future Is On The Line.” All the little Borgs have been gathered back into the Hivemind. Biden demanded the NHDP commit career suicide because they voted for the wrong senile octogenarian in 2020. And here they are, trying to win him a second term so he can keep punishing them for another four years. You’ve got to admire the discipline.

Speaking of Donald Trump, I was really looking forward to voting for someone else this year—Vivek Ramaswamy, or at least Ron DeSantis. Trump was always going to win, of course. But you can’t make it too easy with these people. Maybe it’s because I was born in Massachusetts (boo, hiss), but I hate primary season. We actually like the Red Arrow Diner, but I haven’t dared to go in almost a year. Imagine you’re sitting there, eating your liver and onions and drinking your coffee when suddenly you look up and there’s Nikki Haley trying to shake your hand. Gross. 

Actually, I worked for the GOP during the 2012 election season. That’s when I first met Ambassador Haley, at the Romney headquarters in Manchester. I don’t think she’s blinked since.

I have to admit, though, I really enjoyed the 2016 primary, but that’s only because of Jeb Bush. I was working as a reporter at the time, and I attended dozens of events with all the major candidates. The Trump rallies were pretty fun. There were so many gorgeous blondes in camo it was like Putin’s birthday party. But I lived for the Jeb events. He’d spend an hour talking to a crowd of six people about the last book he read or how much weight he’d lost on the paleo diet. His wholesome, dorky energy was enchanting. He was, unironically, the perfect retail politician—at least for a state full of old white guys in flannels. I’d never vote for Jeb but, damn it, I’d be proud to share a booth with him at the Red Arrow.

This year was just disappointing. Trump has no new material. Well, that’s not quite true: Everyone scratched their heads at the beginning of the election cycle when he started calling DeSantis “Meatball Ron.” For those of us who only knew the Florida governor from fawning tweets and hagiographies in National Review, it didn’t make sense. Then Ron hit the campaign trail. We got to see him in middle-school gyms, at fundraisers, and on the debate stage. And it turns out—yeah, he’s a meatball. 

Vivek was clearly the best man for the job. He was lean, intelligent, and energetic, but he’ll make a great secretary of state. It’s as if Henry Kissinger handpicked Greg Gutfeld as his successor. What else could you ask for?

It’s strange, though. Today is election day. Then, tomorrow, it’s all over. The politicians and journalists will all swim off to South Carolina. New Hampshire will be forgotten. And that’s just the way we like it.

The post Why the New Hampshire Primary is a Nuisance appeared first on The American Conservative.

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