Feb 9, 2015 12:31 PM

Primary provides many memorable moments throughout the years


As the 100th anniversary of the New Hampshire primary approaches, NH1 News takes a look at several memorable moments.

1980 Nashua Debate: Ronald Reagan says, "I am paying for this microphone" stealing debate and then the primary over George H. Bush.

1988: Joe Biden withdraws in September 1987 after plagiarizing lines from British Labor leader Neil Kinnock but also questioned in Lebanon by a New Hampshire resident about his grades at law school.

Biden says, "I think I probably have a much higher IQ than you do, I suspect."
He claims to have graduated in the "top half" when he was actually finished 76th out of a class of 85.

1992: A week before New Hampshire's primary President George H. Bush marvels at the scanner technology while visiting a supermarket in Florida. It had been a fixture in stores for a decade.
The anecdote seals Bush's fate as an out-of-touch, rich patrician incumbent and clearly played a role in Pat Buchanan's surprising showing in New Hampshire with 40 percent of the vote.

Bill Clinton scored a masterful daily double first with his convincing (though it proved later untrue) denial of a relationship with Gennifer Flowers, and then his primary night acceptance as the "comeback kid'' even though he finished second in that Democratic primary to Paul Tsongas.

2000: GOP frontrunner George W. Bush ducks the first major debate at Dartmouth College to be with his wife, Laura, who was being honored by her alma mater Southern Methodist University.
The snub became a metaphor that contrasted the extent John McCain went through to carry votes here while Bush ran a rose garden strategy. McCain won New Hampshire but Bush had the last laugh.

2008: Barack Obama slowed down at the finish line here after his stunning win in the Iowa caucus. He kept giving the same speech during the final week and didn't take questions from voters.

Hillary Clinton held town hall-style forums that lasted two and three hours long until the last question could get lodged.

Obama acknowledges to this day Clinton acted more like she wanted it at the end, which she did, leading to her stunning win in New Hampshire though Obama again won it all.

2012: Then-Texas Gov. Rick Perry in November tells Fox he's getting ready for those "New Hampshire caucuses." That's Iowa not New Hampshire that holds those. Two weeks later at a debate in Michigan he can't name three federal departments he would cut all cementing the image in New Hampshire as a pretty boy who's not at all ready for prime time.

More primary coverage

On Wednesday, NH1 News and WBIN-TV will team up with the New Hampshire Institute of Politics, Bloomberg Politics, and the Newseum, for an event in Washington, D.C., that kicks off the centennial celebration of the Granite State's first-in-the-nation primary.


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