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Final results: Summary results | Town resultsThe BasicsThe New Hampshire primary is a mainstay in American electoral politics. Every four years, voters gather to help determine the Republican and/or Democratic nominee for President. While the state only has 12 electoral votes in 2012 (normally it’s 24, but the Republican National Committee penalized the state party for moving up the event date), the primary’s position as one of the earliest contests gives the state out-sized influence over the nomination process.Only the Iowa caucuses come before New Hampshire’s primary. Traditionally, New Hampshire’s broad-based primary contest has been seen as a counter-weight to Iowa’s more drawn-out caucus process, which tends to draw a smaller core of party faithful. In the case of the 2012 Republican race, New Hampshire’s electorate is seen to represent the more libertarian-leaning, fiscally conservative wing of the party, while Iowa voters are seen as representing the socially conservative wing of the GOP base.N.H. Primary summary provided by StateImpact - NH reporter, Amanda Loder

GOP, Democrats Tussle Over Romney Call For No More Police, Teachers, Firefighters

Mitt Romney's team is sticking by his comment in Council Bluffs, Iowa, on Friday that voters' desire for smaller government means they don't want more cops, teachers or firefighters.
Evan Vucci
Mitt Romney's team is sticking by his comment in Council Bluffs, Iowa, on Friday that voters' desire for smaller government means they don't want more cops, teachers or firefighters.

Mitt Romney's assertion Friday that the message of last week's success by Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker in fending off a recall was that voters want no more teachers, firefighters and police officers had a chance to ferment a bit over the weekend.

There were few signs Monday, however, that the Romney presidential campaign was backing away from its candidate's remark. And that was despite even Walker distancing himself from Romney's comment during an appearance on CBS News' Face the Nation.

Ever since Friday, Democrats have tried to recover from President Obama's "The private sector is doing fine" gaffe by accusing Romney of committing his own misstep by suggesting that voters don't want to see more teachers, firefighters and police officers.

But John Sununu, Romney's campaign chairman who served President George H.W. Bush as White House chief of staff and is a former New Hampshire governor, indicated Monday that he thought the all-but-official Republican presidential nominee's comments were absolutely justifiable.

Appearing Monday on MSNBC (about 6 minutes into the linked video,) he said:

"... You have cities in this country in which the school population peaked 10, 15 years ago and yet the number of teachers that they have maintained has not changed. I think this is a real issue and people ought to stop jumping on it as a gaffe and understand there's wisdom in the comment."

Romney's comment, to be precise, came Friday in Council Bluffs, Iowa. He lambasted Obama for saying not only that the private sector is "doing fine" but also that what's needed is more hiring of public-sector workers.

"He says we need more firemen, more policemen, more teachers. Did he not get the message of Wisconsin? The American people did. It's time for us to cut back on government and help the American people."

The Obama campaign and other Democrats have sought to use the comment to get themselves back on offense and out of the defensive crouch their party's leader forced them in because of his controversial comment.

To that end, Democrats released a video Monday meant to capitalize on Romney's remark.

Republicans, meanwhile, continued to make hay with Obama's gaffe, with the Romney campaign releasing a new video Monday whose stark message is that the president is not only out of touch, but to a historic degree.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Frank James joined NPR News in April 2009 to launch the blog, "The Two-Way," with co-blogger Mark Memmott.
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