Moore to the Point – The Importance of Dixville Notch

It’s a teeny-tiny town in northern New Hampshire — the 2020 Census numbered its residents at four, though there are six registered voters for the precinct. Few would know anything of Dixville Notch were it not for the fact that it holds the distinction of being the first place in the nation to vote (exclusive of the Iowa Caucus in the primaries). And every presidential election cycle, we hear news reports on how the town votes because they do so at midnight on Election Day — and promptly report the outcome. 

On Tuesday morning, I reported on the fact that former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley had swept the Notch. Of course, no meaningful predictions can be gleaned about the Republican primary from the votes of six citizens who’ve voted for the Democrat in the past several presidential elections, despite being registered as Republicans or independents.

Not surprisingly, a number of readers questioned the need for continuing the tradition and reporting on it. I get it. It’s quaint — probably antiquated — and it doesn’t really mean anything. 

Except it does in the sense that it ties us to some storied political traditions and reminds us that it’s okay to mix in a little bit of fun and whimsy with your politics. There’s enough seriousness in the world as it is. I’m good with adding some light-hearted fluff to the mix here and there. 

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