Biden relying on grassroots write-in campaign to win New Hampshire primary after failing to register for election

 January 4, 2024

President Joe Biden, already arguably one of the weakest and least popular incumbent presidents seeking re-election in U.S. history, could be on the verge of suffering a virtually unprecedented and highly embarrassing defeat in the upcoming New Hampshire Democratic primary election.

That is because Biden never formally registered as a candidate in that election and will not appear on the primary ballot, and instead is relying upon a grassroots write-in campaign on his behalf to hopefully still achieve victory in the Granite State, according to the New York Post.

New Hampshire vs. the DNC

In early 2023, and for explicitly race-based reasons, the Democratic National Committee altered the traditional lineup of early-voting primary states to knock predominately white New Hampshire from its longstanding first-in-the-nation primary status and replace it on the schedule with South Carolina and its substantial portion of minority voters.

New Hampshire balked at that move, however, and cited a state law that requires it to hold its primary election before any other state or territory, and in defiance of the DNC moved its election up to January 23 so that its voters could still be the first to cast ballots in the 2024 Democratic primary.

In response to that defiance, the DNC threatened to strip New Hampshire of some or all of its delegates at the nominating convention in the summer and President Biden refused to file as a primary candidate or hold any campaign events in the state as punishment.

Write-in campaign launched on behalf of Biden

Enter the mostly grassroots volunteer group known as Granite State Write-In, a collection of registered Democratic and left-leaning independent voters who aim to help President Biden dodge a potentially embarrassing defeat in less than three weeks, per the Post.

According to the group's website, its members are "dedicated to protecting our democracy from MAGA extremism and moving our state and our country forward."

"While misguided DNC rules are leaving Joe Biden off the primary ballot here, New Hampshire Democrats and Democrat-leaning Independents overwhelmingly support Joe Biden and plan to write him in," the group stated. "That’s why our focus will be encouraging those Democrats and Democrat-leaning Independents to turn out and write in Joe Biden’s name on the 2024 New Hampshire Primary ballot."

Measuring Biden's support in New Hampshire and nationally

The Post reported that an unnamed source said to be "familiar with the effort" revealed that the write-in campaign is operating almost exclusively with volunteers and a "shoestring" budget of just $70,000 to try to spread the word in a condensed time frame about the attempt to help President Biden still win the New Hampshire primary without officially appearing on the ballot.

"A write-in campaign like this is unprecedented and it’s very difficult to do. There are definitely challenges," the anonymous source explained. "And there’s no question that because [Biden’s] not on the ballot, whatever number he gets at the polls will understate his actual support."

That may well be true, as RealClearPolling's average of polls in the New Hampshire primary shows Biden with 47.3% support in the state, more than 35 points ahead of his most significant Democratic challengers, Rep. Dean Phillips (D-MN) with 11.7% and self-help author Marianne Williamson with 8.7%.

More broadly, RCP's average of national Democratic primary polls has the incumbent Biden doing even better with 68.9% support, which is 61 points higher than Williamson at 7.9% and Phillips at 3.1%.

Phillips says Biden is being disrespectful to voters

The Post noted that Rep. Phillips, who entered the race as an alternative to the "too old" and "too unpopular" President Biden, told the outlet previously that the incumbent's refusal to register for the primary election and reliance on a grassroots write-in campaign to nonetheless achieve victory was disrespectful toward New Hampshire's voters.

"A sitting American president chose to not be on the ballot in the first-in-the-nation primary state," the congressman told the Post in December. "I think it’s a symptom of a much broader disease, and that is a lack of respect for voters all around the country, including here."

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