How Far Does A Victory In New Hampshire Take You?

New Hampshire is proud of a saying that goes like this:  “Always First, Always Right.”

Well, yes and no.

The Granite State does indeed hold the nation’s first presidential primary.  It’s been a tradition since 1952, when the names of the candidates first began appearing on the ballot.

But always right?  That assumes the winner of the New Hampshire primary goes on to win the nomination.  The record on that is decidedly mixed.

Here’s the list of competitive Democratic presidential primaries going back to ’52:  who won, and who won the nomination (* indicates elected president).


1976 — Jimmy Carter*

1980 — Carter

1988 — Michael Dukakis

2000 — Al Gore

2004 — John Kerry


1952 — primary winner:  Estes Kefauver; nominee:  Adlai Stevenson

1968 — Lyndon Johnson; Hubert Humphrey

1972 — Ed Muskie; George McGovern

1984 — Gary Hart; Walter Mondale

1992 — Paul Tsongas; Bill Clinton*

2008 — Hillary Clinton; Barack Obama*

2016 — Bernie Sanders; Hillary Clinton

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