Tuesday, February 9, 2016

New Hampshire Notes

A few notes and observations on the New Hampshire Presidential Primary results.

Right after the 2012 general election I predicted that if things in our country did not improve over the second term of Obama that it was likely that the Presidential nominees of the Republican and Democrat parties were likely to be much more radical than we had seen in the past.

This prediction seems to be proving accurate based on the election results in the first two states in 2016.

The Democrats seem to believe that the country's failures are due to policies that are not liberal enough. This has led to the rise of the Socialist Bernie Sanders and has caused Hillary to veer even further to the left.

The Republicans believe that mainstream Republican leaders have failed in challenging and stopping the progressivism of Obama and the Democrats. This has allowed for Trump and Cruz to rise to the top in the Republican race.

The next month will tell us a lot of whether this trend will continue all the way to the end.


Bernie Sanders

Sanders beat Hillary Clinton by over 20 points.  This is a landslide by any definition.  However, Sanders now moves to states that will be much more difficult for him from a demographics perspective with many more minority and urban voters.ma

Sanders has great momentum but can he sustain his mojo in states like South Carolina, Nevada, Texas and Alabama?

A couple of interesting stats I heard in the exit poll data tonight.

32% of Dem voters in NH cited honesty and trustworthiness as the most important factor in their choice for President (this actually was the #1 rated attribute mentioned by voters). Of those voters, they chose Sanders by a margin of 93%-5%!

Sanders also won 74% of all voters under the age of 45!

Hillary is in deep, deep trouble if these numbers hold in upcoming states.

Donald Trump 

Donald Trump showed he could win at the ballot box and he won convincingly. As big a win as it was, he still did not best 2nd place John Kasich by as large a margin as Bernie beat Hillary.  Another indication of how badly Hillary did in NH.

The good news for Trump is that he won 1/3 of the vote.

The bad news is that 2/3 of GOP voters supported someone else.

Worse news for him (and GOP voters who would like to win in November) is that 60% of general election voters still hold an unfavorable view of him.

John Kasich

Kasich bet all his marbles on New Hampshire and it was do or die for him. He had made something like 150 appearances in the state over the last six months.

Kasich's problem now is that he will have some momentum coming out of the state but he has little money or organization to employ in the next states. He is unlikely to be able to capitalize on his strong showing in upcoming states.  Those states are also much more conservative than New Hampshire. He does not appear to have anywhere to go from here.

Ted Cruz

It appears that Ted Cruz will finish 3rd in NH after his win in Iowa. This clearly exceeded expectations for him in the state where he beat Bush, Rubio, Christie and the others.

What is most impressive about the Cruz results is how he did it without spending any money.

Here is what each candidate spent in New Hampshire.

$36M    Bush
$18M    Christie
$15M    Rubio
$12M    Kasich
$  4M    Trump
$  2M    Fiorina
$ .6M    Cruz

That's right, Cruz spent less than $600,000 in New Hampshire and Bush spent $36 million.

And as of the time I am writing this (1130pm EST), Cruz has more votes than Bush.

Talk about return on investment.  Even Trump has to be impressed with that ROI.


Hillary Clinton

I thought I had seen it all but I never thought Hillary could lose to a 74-year old Socialist by 20 points in any election. That says it all.

South Carolina becomes absolutely critical for her. If she loses there the bottom might drop out completely for her. Is Joe Biden warming up in the bullpen? What is Michael Bloomberg going to do?

Marco Rubio

What a difference a week (and one debate) can mean in Presidential politics.

Marco has fallen and may now not be able to get up with both Kasich and Bush beating him in NH. I still think he has more staying power than Bush or Kasich but he has to prove it in this Saturday's debate in SC and in the SC vote.

Chris Christie

Like Kasich, he put it all on the line in NH and ended up with a single digit result. I predict he will be taking himself out of the race in the next few days. His legacy in this race may be that he took both Rubio and himself out with the same shot in the last debate.

Ben Carson

It is almost breathtaking how quickly Carson has fallen.

He tried to blame Cruz and CNN for his troubles in Iowa but Carson has no one to blame but himself. Serious candidates do not go home to get a change of clothes and take three days off of the campaign trail in the week between Iowa and New Hampshire. He took himself out and the people of NH noticed. He ended up with a mere 2% in NH.

Carson is on life support. Good doctors do not pull the plug easily. He may stay in until South Carolina but he will not be a raise any more money. He is done.


Jeb Bush

Jeb Bush beat two of the three (Rubio and Christie) he had to in order to stay in as a potential Establishment candidate (trailing Kasich). That is enough to keep him viable, especially with the money he has remaining at his disposal. That makes him a winner.

However, when you spend $36 million and finish 4th you still have to feel like a loser.

It is a draw at best for Jeb tonight.


Expect things to really heat up in South Carolina.

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