The New Hampshire Primary and the American Electoral Process

By Niall A. Palmer | Go to book overview

from a useful practice ground to a key indicator and then to a crucial contest, but the systemic factors influencing its rise could also now diminish its importance.

The 1992 elections, when New Hampshire failed to live up to its reputation for choosing presidents, may signify that high-cost campaigning and high-pressure timetables are slowly but surely nullifying the importance of early contests, weakening their winnowing role and reducing their ability to help struggling campaigns. Without fundamental change, which must include concerted action by both national parties to stabilize and spread out primary dates, there is a real possibility that the first-in-the-nation primary as a determinative contest will not survive long into the twenty-first century.


NOTES
1.
J. A. Thompson, Progressivism, British Association of American Studies Pamphlet Series, no. 2 ( Durham: 1979), p. 5.
2.
Gerald M. Pomper and Susan S. Lederman, Elections in America, 2nd ed. ( New York: Longman, 1980), p. 25.
3.
William J. Crotty and John S. Jackson, Presidential Primaries and Nominations ( Washington, DC: Congressional Quarterly Books, 1985), pp. 13-14.
4.
Austin Ranney, Curing the Mischiefs of Faction ( Berkeley: University of California Press, 1975), p. 124.
5.
Presidential Elections Since 1789, 4th ed. ( Washington, DC: Congressional Quarterly, 1987), p. 7.
6.
Ibid.
7.
Clinton Rossiter, ed., The Federalist Papers ( New York: New American Library, 1961), p. 414.
8.
Pomper and Lederman, Elections in America, pp. 15-19.
9.
Presidential Elections Since 1789, pp. 7-8. TR's success in the 1916 Republican primaries and his subsequent bolt from the GOP convention split the party badly, permitting Woodrow Wilson a second term in the White House and reinforcing the already dim view taken of primaries by national party leaders.
10.
Crotty and Jackson, Presidential Primaries, p. 16.
11.
Ibid.
12.
James W. Davis, Presidential Primaries: The Road to the White House ( Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1980), p. 28.
13.
Presidential Elections Since 1789, p. 9 and James W. Ceaser, Reforming the Reforms: A Critical Analysis of the Presidential Selection Process ( Cambridge, MA: Ballinger Publishing Co., 1982), p. 24.
14.
For a detailed and colorful account of behind-the-scenes maneuvering during the first nomination of Franklin D. Roosevelt, see Richard Oulahan, The Man Who . . . The Story of the Democratic National Convention of 1932 ( New York: Dial Press, 1971).
15.
Theodore White, The Making of the President 1972 ( New York: Atheneum, 1973), p. 91.
16.
Presidential Elections Since 1789, p. 32.
17.
Ibid.
18.
Crotty and Jackson, Presidential Primaries, pp. 17-18.

-95-

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The New Hampshire Primary and the American Electoral Process
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Tables ix
  • Foreword xi
  • Acknowledgments xv
  • Introduction xvii
  • 1 - Granite State Watersheds, 1916-1996 1
  • Notes 32
  • 2 - New Hampshire in Profile 37
  • 3 - The Nomination Environment 65
  • Notes 95
  • 4 - Interpretation Games: The News Media in New Hampshire 99
  • Notes 130
  • 5 - The Importance of Being Earliest 135
  • Conclusion - NASS and Beyond 175
  • Notes 180
  • Selected Bibliography 181
  • Index 185
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