By Allyn Tucker
Boston University News Service
MANCHESTER, N.H. – President Joe Biden is not appearing on the New Hampshire ballot in this year’s Democratic primary, but his supporters are convinced he can win the state anyway.
In early 2023, the Democratic National Convention (DNC) voted to change the presidential primary order. Although New Hampshire’s claim as the nation’s first primary is written into state law, the DNC contested the state’s tradition in favor of beginning the process in South Carolina. Because New Hampshire is holding the nation’s first Democratic primary despite the official schedule change, Biden’s name will not be an option for voters.
While Biden said he agrees that the Democratic primary calendar was in need of a refresh, citing the need to begin the process with states representative of minority voters, many New Hampshire Democrats have not been deterred from giving him their vote.
Volunteers from both New Hampshire and the surrounding states are campaigning for Democratic voters to write in Biden’s name under the candidates present on the ballot. Despite disagreements between the DNC and the New Hampshire state government, voters are going to the polls in support of the current president.
Joe Caiazzo, a political consultant who traveled to Manchester from Danvers, MA to volunteer with the write-in campaign, is confident that Biden can win the state through write-in voting.
“This is bigger than just politics; ultimately, democracy is at stake. I believe in Joe Biden, I believe in his vision for this country, and I believe it’s important he wins again,” Caiazzo told BU News Service. “Regardless of inter-party politics and squabbles, it’s never been more important that we make sure a democrat is successful in the fall.”
Biden’s campaign has not commented on the write-in effort in New Hampshire, but the campaign has gained attention from New Hampshire Senators Jeanne Shaheen and Maggie Hassan, as well as Boston Mayor Michelle Wu. Wu urged voters to uphold democracy and cast their ballot towards a future where fear and hate are absent, which she said she believes Biden will present.
Although politicians and volunteers alike are stressing the importance of a Biden victory in New Hampshire, the state’s delegates were stripped by the DNC. Therefore, the result of the primary holds no weight in terms of the Democratic nomination. Most write-in campaign volunteers are tacking their responsibilities onto already busy schedules, but they find that the effort to give Biden a symbolic win is worth the extra hours.
“We’re committed to democracy,” said Caiazzo. “The pathway to sustaining our democracy is President Biden, and the way that begins is right here in the Granite State.”