Primary primer: New Hampshire’s ‘First in the nation’ tradition

© Herb Swanson
As New Hampshire voters head to the polls for the first primary in the 2016 US presidential election tonight starting at midnight, RT brings you this handy primary primer for those who are still in a thick New England fog when it comes to how it all works.

CAUCUS vs PRIMARY

New Hampshire's primary is different to Iowa’s Democratic caucus as it involves secret voting in a booth, just like most ordinary elections.

The delegates chosen will serve at the national conventions this July where the nominee is officially selected.

A primary is organized by the state board of elections, as opposed to the parties themselves.

READ MORE: Caucuses are awesome: Iowa’s unique process explained with Lego

In New Hampshire, each town sets its own times to vote.

Three towns will vote just after midnight on Tuesday morning - Dixville Notch, Hart's Location, and Millsfield.

Other areas normally begin voting at 7 a.m.

New Hampshire voters may deliver a record turnout with NH Secretary of State Bill Gardner predicting 550,000 citizens heading to the polls.

A LOOK AT THE POLLS

Unlike the tight race in Iowa, polls in New Hampshire show a big lead for the two front-runners.

The latest polling aggregated by Real Clear Politics reveals Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders is leading by a range of 10-23 points against his main opponent, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

On the Republican side, the man who took second place in Iowa, billionaire Donald Trump, is leading by a range of 14-22 points with Iowa winner Ted Cruz, Ohio governor John Kasich, Florida senator Marco Rubio, and former Florida governor Jeb Bush in a battle for second.

CANDIDATES OUT AND ABOUT

This West Wing episode exemplifies the kind of retail politics and micro-issues the candidates face on the campaign trail.

Here now, in alphabetical order, are some highlights from their final weekend of pounding the pavements (and dirt roads) of New Hampshire.

Jeb Bush

Ben Carson

Chris Christie

Hillary Clinton

Clinton is in Michigan on Sunday, but husband Bill has been campaigning for her.


Ted Cruz

Carly Fiorina

John Kasich

Marco Rubio


Bernie Sanders

Packed house at UNH #bernie2016 #bernienh

A photo posted by Hilary Hess (@hilaryhess) on

Donald Trump