The Special Hell of Being a New Hampshire Voter

Holding the first primary in the nation is a great privilege—but you also have to deal with this.

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For New Hampshire voters, there’s a certain kind of flinty pride that comes with helping to set the tone of the presidential election. But, in exchange for the privilege of their first-in-the-nation status, Granite Staters must also endure a special kind of hell. I’m talking about the ceaseless robo-calls, the too-chipper canvassers, the legions of journalists taking up all the damn parking spots in downtown Manchester. And the mailers. They start trickling into mailboxes many months before the primaries, and, as the election nears, the deluge grows biblical.

My in-laws, who live in southern New Hampshire, are putting me up for a few days while I cover the primaries with my colleagues, and they saved some of their mailers for me. This is about a week or twos’ worth. (They are registered Republicans, though occasionally vote Democrat, which is why the bulk of the campaign literature they receive concerns GOP candidates. Their moderate leanings may also explain why they are getting a disproportionate number of mailers for and against New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.)

Here’s one from a group called America Needs Leadership. It’s not entirely clear who’s behind this outfit, since a group by this name doesn’t even show up in the Federal Election Commission’s database. What is clear is that this group’s backers believe America needs leadership—and those leaders shouldn’t include Marco Rubio (or Hillary Clinton). 

Here’s one from pro-Christie super-PAC America Leads—not to be confused with the mysterious America Needs Leadership.

Notice who’s reflected in Hillary’s shades in this mailer from pro-Marco Rubio super-PAC Conservative Solutions? (It’s Rubio.)

Here’s another Conservative Solutions mailer, this one taking on Rubio rival Ted Cruz.

This mailer from Jeb Bush’s campaign is intended to appeal to Granite State gun owners. The gun-carrying guy in the right-hand corner at first glance appears to be Jeb, but he may actually be just some random guy!

At least one out of every three mailers seems to come from Right to Rise, the pro-Jeb Bush super-PAC that raised more than $100 million during its first fundraising quarter.

Another from Right to Rise.

Spoiler alert: the contents are not urgent.

And then there’s this classy specimen.

 

 

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And the truth is, going into the final 4 days of the year we still needed to raise $TK to hit our $350,000 goal and start 2021 on track. It's nerve-wracking, wondering if the big spike we normally see at the end of December is going to be another thing that doesn't go as planned in 2020, or worse, if, now that Donald Trump is set to leave the White House (for longer than a taxpayer-funded golf trip to a property he owns), folks might be pulling back from fighting for the truth and a democracy and think the hard work is done.

It's not, and if you can right now, please consider a year-end donation to support our team's fearless nonprofit journalism so we can close that big fundraising gap and finish the year strong, ready for all that's ahead in 2021. Whether you can give $5 or $500, it all matters in keeping us charging hard, and we'd be grateful.

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