News / USA

New Hampshire Voters Expect to See the Candidates Up Close

In U.S. politics, six Republicans vying to be their party’s presidential nominee face a crucial test Tuesday in the New Hampshire presidential primary.  Traditionally, a good showing in New Hampshire’s first-in-the-nation primary is seen as major step toward winning the presidential nomination of either major U.S. political party.

Mitt Romney can feel the love (support of voters).  Before he can reach the White House, Romney must first pass muster with these voters in New Hampshire.  And the voters here like to see their candidates up close and personal.

That suits Romney just fine.  He cheerfully goes about the task of greeting voters, signing autographs and posing for pictures, all in a day’s campaign work here in New Hampshire.

Once every four years, normally tranquil New Hampshire and its quaint New England landscape is invaded by presidential contenders and an army of news media, like the horde that descended on this event for former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum.

Though chaotic, Santorum’s impromptu parking lot appearance did attract undecided voters eager to hear from someone new.

“My wife has not told me, but she thinks she is 95 percent sure.  I am still debating,” voter Craig Gallant said.

Gallant brought his wife and son to the Santorum rally and is well aware that New Hampshire voters get special attention from the candidates.

“We always have a wider field to choose from.  We get to meet these people face to face and shake their hand and look them in the eye," he stated. "Sometimes that matters, sometimes it does not, but it is always nice to have that option."

Santorum is a Republican, but that did not stop Democrat Mary Claire Heffernan from stopping by to give a listen.

“It is unique and we really take our job seriously.  We take pride in the fact that we have this opportunity and people pay attention, people get to know the candidates and people come out to vote,” Heffernan noted.

Veteran journalist Tom DeFrank has covered U.S. elections since 1968.  DeFrank says New Hampshire voters expect the personal touch from their candidates.

“People in Iowa and New Hampshire and places like that expect to be courted, expect to be asked for their vote, expect to see you in dozens and hundreds of places,” he said.

Judy and Michael Lopacki came all the way from Pennsylvania to see Romney and democracy in action.

“I love being part of this whole thing.  It makes you really love being an American and feel good about what is happening,” Judy Lopacki said.

Her husband Michael found the experience overwhelming.

“Although some people may look at is as a carnival, which it is to some extent, it is very serious business," he stated. "It is democracy. That is it. Sorry.”

Once the candidates leave and take the reporters with them, New Hampshire will revert to its quiet self, a beckoning landscape of rolling hills, town greens and colonial churches that once every four years becomes a critical testing ground for those seeking the highest office in the land. 

You May Like

Photogallery Obama Announces Plan to Send 3,000 Troops to Liberia in Ebola Fight

At US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Obama details troop deployment and other pieces of US plan More

China Muslims Work to Change Perceptions After Knife Attacks

Muslims in Kunming say that they condemn the violence, it is not a reflection of the true beliefs of their faith More

Humanitarian Aid, Equipment Blocked in Cameroon

Move is seen as a developing supply crisis in West Africa More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Enviropreneur Seeks to Save the Environment, Empower the Communityi
X
September 16, 2014 2:06 PM
Lorna Rutto, a former banker, is now an ‘enviropreneur’ - turning plastic waste into furniture and fences discusses the challenges she faces in Africa with raw materials and the environment.
Video

Video Enviropreneur Seeks to Save the Environment, Empower the Community

Lorna Rutto, a former banker, is now an ‘enviropreneur’ - turning plastic waste into furniture and fences discusses the challenges she faces in Africa with raw materials and the environment.
Video

Video West Trades Accusations Over Ransoms

As world leaders try to forge a common response to the threat posed by Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria, there is simmering tension over differing policies on paying ransoms. In the past month, the jihadist group has beheaded two Americans and one Briton. Both countries refuse to pay ransom money. As Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London, there is uncertainty in the approach of some other European nations.
Video

Video Scotland Independence Bid Stokes Global Interest

The people of Scotland are preparing to vote on whether to become independent and break away from the rest of Britain, in a referendum being watched carefully in many other countries. Some see it as a risky experiment; while others hope a successful vote for independence might energize their own separatist demands. Foreign immigrants to Scotland have a front row seat for the vote. VOA’s Henry Ridgwell spoke to some of them in Edinburgh.
Video

Video Washington DC Mural Artists Help Beautify City

Like many cities, Washington has a graffiti problem. Buildings and homes, especially in low-income neighborhoods, are often targets of illegal artwork. But as we hear from VOA’s Julie Taboh, officials in the nation's capital have come up with an innovative program that uses the talents of local artists to beautify the city.
Video

Video US Muslim Leaders Condemn Islamic State

Leaders of America's Muslim community are condemning the violent extremism of the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria. The U.S. Muslim leaders say militants are exploiting their faith in a failed effort to justify violent extremism. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.
Video

Video Americans' Reaction Mixed on Obama Strategy for Islamic State Militants

President Barack Obama’s televised speech on how the United States plans to “degrade and destroy” the group known as the Islamic State reached a prime-time audience of millions. And it came as Americans appear more willing to embrace a bolder, tougher approach to foreign policy. VOA producer Katherine Gypson and reporter Jeff Seldin have this report from Washington.
Video

Video Authorities Allege LA Fashion Industry-Cartel Ties

U.S. officials say they have broken up crime rings that funneled tens of millions of dollars from Mexican drug cartels through fashion businesses in Los Angeles. Mike O'Sullivan reports that authorities announced nine arrests, as 1,000 law enforcement agents fanned out through the city on Wednesday.
Video

Video Bedouin Woman Runs Successful Business in Palestinian City

A Bedouin woman is breaking social taboos by running a successful vacation resort in the Palestinian town of Jericho. Bedouins are a sub-group of Arabs known for their semi-nomadic lifestyle. Zlatica Hoke says the resort in the West Bank's Jordan Valley is a model of success for women in the region.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid