Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Farewell, New Hampshire

Every four years, New Hampshire emerges from the shadows and, like Brigadoon, has a brief spell in the sunlight. Then it falls off the national radar until presidential primary season rolls around again in four years.

The cycle is complete, the voters of frigid New Hampshire have spoken, and the winners are, as expected  ... Sanders and Trump. Both won decisively, both channeled voter anger at party establishments.

Kasich came in second, but his strong showing will probably lead nowhere as he has no money and next-to-no organization. I see Kasich voters as RINOs who, if they like his "compassionate conservative" platform, should vote for Hillary as she actually has some chance of winning.

Without doing, or spending, much Ted Cruz came in third in this state with few evangelicals. He thereby exceeded expectations and, combined with his Iowa win, goes on to evangelical-rich South Carolina with momentum.

Being fair, you could toss a blanket over the third, fourth, and fifth finishers - Cruz, Bush, and Rubio. Christie, Fiorina, and Carson were in single digits and will likely leave the race soon.

I was impressed with Rubio's mea culpa speech to his followers. He took total responsibility for his weaker-than-expected showing in NH, promising his volunteers and supporters he will never flub a debate again. Very classy, albeit unusual; somehow you want to like Rubio, to see him do well.