Trump’s N.H. primary win was historic in size

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    President Donald Trump holds up a newspaper with a headline that reads "Trump acquitted" as he speaks in the East Room of the White House, Thursday, Feb. 6, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci) Evan Vucci

Monitor staff
Published: 2/12/2020 10:54:42 AM

All eyes Tuesday were on the crowded Democratic ballot but in some ways the biggest winner in the primary was President Donald Trump, whose success came close to the lofty levels of Ronald Reagan.

Even as the president was embroiled in another controversy for interfering with the prosecution of a friend, a decision that led to the angry resignation of four Department of Justice attorneys, he cruised to a stunning primary win Tuesday. With a few towns left to report Wednesday morning he had 85.5% of the party vote, a margin of victory that would be exceeded only by Reagan’s 86.4% in his 1994 re-election bid.

And although some predicted that the lack of a serious opponent would lead Republican voters to skip the primary, they came out in droves. The total number of votes cast for Trump appears to be greater than the number cast for any other incumbent president, according to the Associated Press.

Trump voters interviewed by the Monitor on Tuesday said they felt he was doing what he said he would do.

“I voted for Donald Trump. I voted for him originally and I want him to finish what he started,” said Bonnie Arsenault of Ward 2 in Concord, who cited illegal immigration as a major concern.

In Henniker, Sarah and Graham Baynes showed up to vote for Trump. “I like how things are going. I’m staying with my candidate,” he said.

Another measure of success: Totaling the two dozen towns and cities in greater Concord, Trump received more than twice as many votes as Bernie Sanders, the leading Democratic vote-getter in the area.

In almost all towns his only active competitor, former Mass. Gov. Bill Weld, received 10% of the vote or less. The one exception was Hopkinton, where Weld got 21% of the GOP votes cast.

On Twitter, Trump questioned why his showing wasn’t getting more attention than the Democrats.

“Wouldn’t a big story be that I got more New Hampshire Primary Votes than any incumbent president, in either party, in the history of that Great State?” the president tweeted. “Not an insignificant fact!”

David Brooks bio photo

David Brooks is a reporter and the writer of the sci/tech column Granite Geek and blog, as well as moderator of Science Cafe Concord events. After obtaining a bachelor’s degree in mathematics he became a newspaperman, working in Virginia and Tennessee before spending 28 years at the Nashua Telegraph . He joined the Monitor in 2015.

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