Tuesday, September 11, 2012 at 09:45AM
Maybe it's just me. Maybe in fact it's because I'm old and jaded, but I can honestly say that never have i awakened the day of an election with so little interest as this morning. If Secretary of State Bill Gardner is correct with his turnout projections--and he usually is--only 160,000-170,000 New Hampshire citizens (hopefully they are all NH citizens) will vote today.
Bill terms the turnout average, and I suppose it is, but I find very little interest in today's exercise in democracy.
Blame it on Ted Gatsas. When Ted decided not to run and we were left with the choice of two extreme right wing Republicans for governor (not to mention Robert Tarr), I obviously couldn't get excited about the top of the ticket.
Here's a trivia question I'll answer later. What do you think I did.
A--Left the spot blank.
B--Wrote in Libertarian John Babiarz.
C--Wrote in Jackie Cilley.
D--Wrote in Maggie the Dog Torturer Hassan.
or E--Wrote in Ted Gatsas.
The wording of the options should eliminate D as a choice.
I've said here often the past six months, were I a Democrat, I would vote for Jackie Cilley. If Republicans take both the New Hampshire House (no sure thing) and Senate (a fairly sure thing), a Democrat in the corner office may be the only thing standing between the good citizens of New Hampshire and an extreme right agenda including the repeal of gay marriage.
Try to question again. Here's a hint. I don't believe in blanking top of the ticket races...although I left several blank lower down the ballot (including the Republican choice for Register of Probate).
For once, I don't feel like making any predictions today. Jackie Cilley seems to have the momentum, if what I hear on Channel 9 is correct. Channel Nine's James Pindel picks Cilley; the Telegraphs's Kevin Landrigan picks the Dog Torturer (but by only three points). The Monitor and Fosters have endorsed Cilley; the Keene Sentinel and Telegraph have endorsed the Torturer, but I suspect Cilley will still do well in Keene. Look for Concord, Durham, and Hanover to make the difference. I had given The Torturer the edge when people asked me who I thought would win.
Today I'm just not sure. Maybe Kennedy will prove to be a spoiler, but I think not.
Were I a Democrat, I'd vote for Jackie Cilley. In fact.....!
Oh yes, I don't consider it a prediction because it's simply going with the flow, but Ovide will certainly win the GOP primary, and I suspect it'll be by more than pundits are saying, as much as two to one. I'd be absolutely shocked if Kevin Landrigan is correct and Robert Tarr gets two percent--more like two votes I would think (surely I jest).
The most interesting Senate race is between incumbent Rep Ken Hawkins and incumbent Senator (from another district) Andy Sanborn in the Bedford area. I could make a case for either. Bedford should dominate the turnout, and Hawkins is well known there--in previous races for State Rep, he's usually finished about in the middle of the pack. On the other hand, I suspect that Sanborn probably has some type of a ground game in play what with all the money he's raised and Libertarian activists wanting to see him back in the Senate.
Gun to my head prediction?
No, I'm not playing that game today.
I suspect that Senate President Peter Bragdon and former Senator Dick Green will survive challenges from more right wing Republican Senate challengers.
I suspect most of the six Republican Reps challenged by their party's right wing will also survive.
I expect to survive as well, but I'm not about to spend 13 hours holding a sign, and I can honestly say that while in the past, defeat would have hurt a great deal, I'm not sure it'll hurt at all if voters turn me out today. The thrill is gone.
While I wouldn't want to quibble with Bill Gardner, somehow I don't see Republican dominating the turnout quite to the extent he does (106,000 to 60,000 I think I read). The state is evenly divided in registration. Undeclared voters can vote in either party, and there must be at least as much interest in Cilley-Torturer (Kennedy) as the right wing extremist Republicans. Of course there are far more down ballot contests on the Republican side, but these races don't usually drive up turnout.
Tune in tomorrow for the answer to the great primary day trivia question--we've got it narrowed down to B, C, or E. Think hard enough, and I'm sure you'll see the answer.
If I were a Democrat....