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Know the state

By Staff | Sep 8, 2019

Some will probably accuse us of New Hampshire elitism for this editorial, but we don’t care.

New Hampshire has been widely known for its first-in-the-nation presidential primary since at least 1952. Regardless of where they live in the U.S., those who follow presidential politics know many of the historical moments that have taken place in New Hampshire. At least two of these events directly involved print media.

In 1972, a Hillsborough County newspaper published the so-called “Canuck Letter.” At the time, U.S. Senator Edmund Muskie of Maine was the leading contender for the 1972 Democratic presidential nomination. After the newspaper published this letter, Muskie delivered a speech in front of its office, refuting the allegations in the letter. Newspapers reported that Muskie cried openly during the speech. His candidacy never recovered, as Democrats moved to nominate George McGovern in 1972.

In 1980, then editor of The Telegraph Jon Breen moderated a televised debate involving Republican candidates Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush. At the start, Reagan insisted all the GOP candidates should be allowed to participate.

Breen disagreed and finally asked that Reagan’s microphone be turned off.

Reagan fired back: “I am paying for this microphone, Mr. Green,” misstating Breen’s name.

Reagan went on to win two terms to win the Republican nomination, as well as two landslide victories in the Electoral College to serve his eight years as president.

In 1992, future two-term President Bill Clinton famously labeled himself “The Comeback Kid” after a second-place finish in New Hampshire.

We could go on, and on, and on, but we won’t. Our point is that New Hampshire’s importance in the presidential nominating process is a known commodity.

Therefore, we wonder why we continue to receive emails from presidential candidates discussing their speeches and planned campaign stops for Iowa, South Carolina, Nevada … and even Oklahoma.

While omitting the candidates’ names, here are a few subject lines that landed in The Telegraph’s email inbox just this week:

“Iowa Leaders Praise (Candidate’s) Plan for Rural America”

“In Iowa, (Candidate) Brings a Vision of Democratic Success to Trump Counties”

“(Candidate) Travels to Oklahoma, Tours Tulsa’s Black Wall Street”

We have nothing against Iowa, South Carolina, Nevada, or Oklahoma, but it seems that some of these campaigns have simply grouped New Hampshire with other states that conduct early presidential primaries.

This is certainly not the way for them to impress or endear the candidates they represent to The Telegraph, or, we presume, other New Hampshire-based media outlets.

If we continue receiving these emails that target other states, we will simply keep sending them to the trash folder.


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