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Daily Newscasts

Are the Issues Losing in the NH Primary?

August 13, 2007

Granite State activists say the issues may be the losers in the upcoming New Hampshire primary. The state's first-in-the nation contest was designed to let voters discuss important subjects directly with the candidates, but Clyde Terry of Granite State Independent Living says as the primary date moves closer to Christmas, those issues could carry less weight.

"For the disability community, this is really movement politics, and indeed we may lose some of that momentum merely because of the calendar."

Terry's group has hosted a national disability rights forum in each of the last two primary years, but this year's event has been moved to November because of the early voting. New Hampshire law says the primary must take place no later than January 12 to keep it a week before South Carolina's. Terry worries that holding the forum so early could mean the issues are forgotten by the time the election takes place.

He adds that many New Hampshire groups are delaying their own awareness campaigns until the primary date is finalized.

"We get to a holding pattern then, and that may slow down sort of the efforts for progressive and positive change in this country."

John Robinson/Eric Mack, Public News Service - NH