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Report from the trenches in swing-state New Hampshire

Well, it's 6:30 a.m. here and I just came back from the polls. The lines were pretty long, so it looks like turnout (at least in my ward of Manchester) is gonna be pretty high. I dropped my ballots in at 6:18 (there were two; the elections, and a city referendum question) were #s 181 and 182, meaning I was the 91st voter in barely 15 minutes.

I split my ticket. I voted for Bush/Cheney and incumbent Republican Congressman Jeb Bradley, but went Democratic on the other big offices. For governor, I voted for Peter Lynch and against Craig Benson. I'd had high hopes for Benson -- a successful high-tech entrepeneur (one of the founders of Cabletron, now Enterasys) who has refused his salary, but he's proven a crass lout and his administration's been hit with a few cronyism scandals. And for the Senate, noted campaign finance reformer "Granny D" Haddock is challenging incumbent Senator Judd Gregg. I've never liked Gregg -- he's a tax lawyer who's been on the public payroll for over 30 years, the privileged son of a former governor, and the leader and embodiment of the "arrogant rich" wing of the New Hampshire GOP. Granny D (she who walked across the country to draw attention to campaign finance reform) doesn't have a prayer, but I'm sick of Judd the Dud.

I've been weighing my predictions for some time, and have absolutely no rationale or supporting logic here, but I'm going strictly on my gut. I'm gonna put it at Bush 51.3 %, Kerry at 47.5%. Bush at 294 electoral, Kerry 268. The total turnout will be around 133 million. And the Democrats' lawyers will go absolutely apeshit.

J.

(Correction: Crap, I meant Bush 294, Kerry 244. Thanks, Gary (and Samoyeds). I shouldn't do that kind of math before breakfast...)


Comments (15)

Congrats voting! Hope your... (Below threshold)
Phil Pusateri:

Congrats voting! Hope your part pulls New Hampshire to Bush.

A little background to star... (Below threshold)
Darby:

A little background to start with. I'm 26 years old, I have lived in New Hampshire 99% of my entire life and this is the first time I've ever voted...

Ok, now that you're all done booing and hissing at me, let me explain.

Untill 9/11, I never realized the true importance of voting. I never saw it as directly affecting my life in any significant manner. I now know that my vote is important in the grand scheme of things. I don't want to worry about my, my family, or my friends safety. I don't want the United Nations to decide our Nations response to threats. That scares me.

I hear all this talk of scare tactics, and let me tell you this. I have been scared into voting. I realize the importance of it now. Anyways, I just wanted to get that off my chest.

296+268 = 564. Where did t... (Below threshold)

296+268 = 564. Where did the other 26 EVs come from?

Went to the polls in Keene,... (Below threshold)
LJD:

Went to the polls in Keene, NH at 7:30. They don't open until 8:00. I wasn't the only one doing a 180... For future reference, people would like to vote before work.

Please get out and vote for the President today. I am surrounded by liberal pansies. I would like to go to sleep tonight knowing that the rest of New England hasn't gotten to us....

5:45am: Almost time to go v... (Below threshold)
Darby:

5:45am: Almost time to go vote, I think to myself. I hear my roommate’s computer start up from across the apartment (Yes it really was that loud)… I was wondering what time he would wake up at.

Braving the cold weather, as it was a very brisk 35 degrees outside, we headed to the nearby school that plays host to our Ward (Dummy me didn’t even know that it was Ward 4). I walk in and notice the little printed sign, eight by eleven black and white “voting” with a little arrow below it. Bleary eyes, my senses are assaulted by the hustle and bustle of early voters looking this way and that, trying to figure out what to do, where to go. Having never done this before, I felt apprehensive. Was this going to be complicated? What do I do? Where do I go?

I knew that I needed to register, and I looked around the gym, my gaze seeking some kind of hint as to where I belonged. More eight by eleven, Black and white signs with small print line the walls. There were a moderate amount of people standing in various lines. Confused, I notice a man directing traffic.

“Where is Voter Registration?” I ask him. He points the line along the far wall. I thanked him and move towards the line. Some of the other voters had obviously just woken up, crawled out of bed and staggered to polls. The director of traffic rushed over and grabbed a few fold-out chairs and set them up along the line saying:

“You might be in line a while, please sit and be comfortable.”

A few minutes later, I notice my roommate standing in the line for people who needed to deposit their ballots in the machine that looked an awful lot like a shredder… Oh ye who are ignorant stand up and make a stupid remark about it. Open mouth insert foot… I recovered nicely by making a joke out of it. I didn’t know what they did with ballots….

From one line to the next, I get my little slip of paper… I don’t know, it looked like a piece of scrap paper, but I was assured that it was important and the lady at the end of the other table would give me my ballots in exchange for it.

Luckily for me, there was no line for a booth… I don’t know if I could have withstood the anticipation of voting any longer than I already had been.. I look down at the ballots and being in a tired state of mind, I realized that I didn’t have a pen… But alas, there, tied to a cheesy string is a black marker. I read the instructions and proceed to look at the ballot….

10 minutes later, my tired mind is still struggling over the complex wording of the final question on the ballot… After reading it 3 times, I think I finally understood it enough, and made my selection. Having noted the proper line I needed to be in, I made my way confidently to the “shredder” and placed my ballots into its jaws, and called it a successful outing.

Welcome to the ranks of ful... (Below threshold)

Welcome to the ranks of full citizens, Darby. I think you'll find that participating is addictive.

I voted Absentee (I am out ... (Below threshold)

I voted Absentee (I am out of the state for work) so I "voted" about a week ago.

Do you think Bush or Kerry will win NH? Nearly every poll has Kerry winning the state. And the migration of Mass. people to the Granite state has been pushing it back to the center for years.

In my election prediction, I have Bush winning NH.

At the end of the day, 51.5... (Below threshold)
Tom:

At the end of the day, 51.5/48.5, except Kerry first. Too bad he'll have to try to clean up such a mess.
P.S. to Darby: Follow your convictions and enlist and volunteer for Iraq duty. Don't be like all the hypocrites and support something you wouldn't do yourself. And for all you older hypocrites, the Guard is there, so don't worry if you are in your 40s or 50s, they are there too.

Problems already her... (Below threshold)
notthisgirl:

Problems already here in New Jersey! Polls opened at 6am; hubby went down to vote. A lady who had gone in some minutes before he got there, voted by pressing a candidate *AND* doing a write in! Well, it jammed the electronic voting machine.

Hubby went back around 8am, they had gone to paper balloting until a new machine could arrive.

I hope that this does not jeopardize our voting. We are a HEAVILY Republican district.

Hey Tom:Why don't ... (Below threshold)
Mark:

Hey Tom:

Why don't *you* volunteer your GSA and go over to Iraq to help clean up the mess? You can go over as a aid worker. No? I didn't think so.

After you, Mark, I insist. ... (Below threshold)
Tom:

After you, Mark, I insist. I know that it's really a wonderful place, not the vicious rathole that the mainstream lib media portrays it to be.

Tom, the Guard has the same... (Below threshold)

Tom, the Guard has the same requirements as active duty.

Thee are, however, state defense forces that do accept older volunteers.

Now STFU you sanctimonious hypocrite.

Went to the polls, again. ... (Below threshold)
LJD:

Went to the polls, again. Couldn't help but notice every other car on Main Street has Vermont or Mass. plates.

While waiting in line some lady (patchouli wearing vegetable-eater) is rambling on about how "people were not bussed in from other states as the Republicans suggest". Then a poll worker told her (politely) to shut-up or leave. That saved me from back-handing the B.

As a side note, no one asked for any I.D. I told them the last name, they proceeded to open the book, announce my full name and address across the room. Then I said "Yeah, that's me". Can't believe we haven't done anything to I.D. voters.

I'm looking forward to getting out of work to plow my truck down the sidewalk... Oh, just dreaming. Please, please, all you freaky people, just go back where you came from. If you live in Keene, please move away, soon.

I voted in NH about an hour... (Below threshold)
Just Me:

I voted in NH about an hour or so our ward wasn't crowded at all, and didn't have numbers any higher than the normal turn out.

If the election was decided based on who could get the most sign holders to the polls though, Kerry would easily win in our town-his supporters outnumbered Bush ones about 3 to 1. It has been raining pretty steady though since noonish here, and that may have been a factor in the turn out.

Keeping my fingers crossed that NH stays red.

Tom, When I turned 16 years... (Below threshold)
Darby:

Tom, When I turned 16 years old, I was required to take these medical exams to check up on my heart condition. The doctors told me that I was in excellent health. At the time I asked them about a possible career in the military, and I was told that under no circumstances would the military ever allow me entry within their ranks.

I was born with a VSD - Ventricular Septal Defect - that has not been corrected.

A graphical representation of a VSD.

Even had it been corrected, the fact that I would have had to have corrective heart surgery would automatically disqualify me. My brother is permanently disqualified from MEPS (Military Entrance Processing Station) for having corrective heart surgery for his Coarctation of the Aorta. Even though his doctors have told him that he would be fine medically. Even though he scored somewhere in the 90's on the ASVAB!

A graphical representation of a Coarctation of the Aorta.

So when the military is willing to accept someone who's heart is not perfect I would gladly join, as would my brother. Unfortunately I doubt that will be in my lifetime. Untill then I have to sit back and listen to idiots like you judge me without knowing me.




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