New Hampshire voters are the only child of a family. They are repeatedly told how special they are, showered with gifts, everyone listens to them and most of the time they get whatever they want. This is evidently seen through policy issues, For example, Drug overdose is a large issue in New Hampshire and what do you know but every candidate has an understandable and comprehensive plan on how to combat it. This is great, drug overdoses and reducing drug deaths is necessary legislature but NH voters could have an excess of children wanting to be astronauts and the candidates would have a plan for it.
This is what retail politics is all about. New Hampshire is a barrier that candidates need to pass by being able to interact with voters one on one; ensuring the eligibility of the next President of the United States. But, once in a while all this attention will get to a couple voters heads and they will be convinced that their one vote will change everything.
This brings me to the story of a man I met when I went canvassing, lets call him Bob. When I knocked on Bob’s door he was very confused to why I, as a intern for a democratic candidate, was knocking on his (Republican) door. It took him a couple seconds and then said “Aha! I know why, I’m registered as an undeclared”. He then told me he was a strong Trump supporter. We ended up discussing all the candidates he had voted for in the past when he told me he had voted for Obama in ’08 and is planning on voting for Bernie is this current primary. At this point I was very confused, here there was this conservative man that had voted for Obama? And even crazier, he was voting for Bernie? I then flat out asked him, “Bob, If you like Trump why are you voting for Bernie?”. “Oh” he said “I vote in the Democratic ballot so I can screw with those liberal’s results! If the crappy liberal wins Trump has a better chance of winning the general!.
Bob is an example of a crossover voter. Many crossover voters vote in the other parties ballot because they want two good candidates to pick from in the general election, for example, many NH democratic voters this year are voting in the Republican primary so Trump doesn’t win but will then vote Democratic in the general. But Bob, and a few others try to play a game and mess with the system. Luckily this is such a small percentage of the population that it really doesn’t mess with the votes at all. But, the idea that a few voters can change the election results is a thought main existent in New Hampshire voters that have been told repeatedly how special they are.
-- Rhea Rajan is a Sophomore at St. Olaf College from Mumbai, India. She is a Psychology major with a concentration in Neuroscience. She is in New Hampshire as part of a St. Olaf political science class studying the presidential election.