Tuesday, January 8, 2008

New Hampshire Turnout. Who has the Advantage?

Much like I did last Thursday for the Iowa caucuses, I would like to think out loud about the effect turnout might play in today's New Hampshire primaries. There aren't any specific numbers being floated around today by either the candidates or the pundits like there were in the lead up to the caucuses in Iowa last week. However, on a general level, higher turnout is going to help the candidate with the most momentum, more often than not. This is clearer on the Democratic side than it is on the Republican side. There Huckabee is the momentum candidate, but the polls have shown what many thought coming out of Iowa: that Huckabee wouldn't necessarily play well in New Hampshire. It is less clear how this affects the race between McCain and Romney.

For Democrats, Obama qualifies as the candidate with momentum. This has been reflected in his rising poll numbers both in New Hampshire and nationally since Iowa. But today there have been reports already about long lines waiting to vote and requests to the Secretary of State for more Democratic ballots. This is a pretty clear indication that Obama could be in for a big night tonight when the results begin coming in.

Polls close at 7 pm.

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