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Local Primary results reflect statewide trends


September 19, 2012
REGION — Town Clerks and Tax Collectors in area towns generally reported a nice turnout for the Sept. 11 New Hampshire Primary, with little to no problems with the new Voter I.D. law as it began being phased in before the Nov. 6 General Election.

Holderness TCTC Ellen King said she was quite pleasantly surprised to see 477 registered voters at the polls.

"That was a great turnout here in Holderness for a Primary," King said.

In Holderness, Republicans agreed with the statewide win for Ovide Lamontagne as their gubernatorial candidate, casting 142 votes for him over Kevin Smith, who received 83 votes. On the Democratic side, however, they preferred Jackie Cilley over Maggie Hassan, 118 to 93, although Hassan went on to win statewide. Democrats in the town also supported Anne Kuster for U.S. House of Representatives and Beth Funicello for State Executive Council, who both ran unopposed in their districts. Charlie Bass handily won Republican support for U.S. Congress with 193 votes, and Ray Burton received a boost toward with General Election, winning over his opposition, Jerry Thibodeau, with a vote of 157 to 78. There were no other contested races.

Bristol election officials reported that they saw 515 voters on Primary day, and TC/TC Raymah Smith said all went well in her town.

"Things went better than I expected, and we had a nice steady flow of voters throughout the day," said Smith.

Democrats in Bristol and nearby Alexandria also went with statewide winner Maggie Hassan for their candidate in the November General Election. In the only contest on their ballot, voters selected eventual overall winners Judy Wallick and Philip Preston for State House of Representatives openings in District 9, and Catherine Mulholland, who also won district wide over Tom Ploszaj by a combined town vote of 184 to 85.

Republicans in the two communities agreed with the rest of the state on Lamontagne and Bass, and also threw their support behind Burton. In their other contested race for State House District 9, incumbents Skip Reilly and Jeff Shackett won with combined votes of 280 and 222 votes, respectively, over challengers Barbara Emery (142) and Robert Hull (108). Paul Simard ran uncontested for District 17.

Campton and New Hampton supported Frank Guinta as their Congressional district candidate, and Burton, who won in both towns, faced one of his closer races in Campton, where he defeated Thibodeau 145 to 108 for the Executive Council opening. Democrats in both towns also went with Hassan in their only contested race.

Waterville Valley saw 86 voters at their polls, who all went with the eventual state and district wide winners on their ballots, and Ashland, which had 364 votes cast in the Primary, also backed Lamontagne, Bass, Reilly and Shackett in their Republican contests, and Hassan and Mulholland in their only two Democratic challenges.

Plymouth reported a good day at the polls as well, where voters were behind Lamontagne, Bass and Burton on the Republican ballot, and had no other contested races. On the Democratic side, Hassan narrowly won out over Cilley with a tight vote of 177 to 174.

"It really went quite smoothly this time around. People didn't seem to mind showing their I.D. at all, and we had a nice turn out, so hopefully things will go well in November," said TC/TC Karen Freitas of Plymouth.

No one was turned away for not having an I.D. for the Primary elections, but in November, voters at all New Hampshire polls will either have to have the proper photo identification or sign a Challenged Voter Affidavit before being given a ballot. Those who have questions on how to obtain the proper identification should contact their town hall for assistance prior to the election.

Garnett Hill
Salmon Press
Parker Village
Martin Lord Osman
Northern Human Services
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