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Obama begins with a bang, wins Dixville Notch
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November 04, 2008 12:18 IST
Last Updated: November 04, 2008 16:44 IST

Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama [Images] on Tuesday won handsomely in the first election returns of the 2008 presidential race, winning 15 of 21 votes cast in Dixville Notch, New Hampshire.

People in the isolated village in New Hampshire's northeast corner voted just after midnight Tuesday.

It was the first time since 1968 that the village leaned Democratic in an election.

Obama's rival, Republican John McCain [Images], won 6 votes, CNN reported.

A full 100 per cent of registered voters in the village cast ballots.

The town, home to around 75 residents, has opened its polls shortly after midnight each election day since 1960, drawing national media attention for being the first place in the country to make its presidential preferences known.

The result in Dixville Notch is hardly a reliable bellwether for the eventual winner of the White House � or even the result statewide, the report said.

While New Hampshire is a perennial swing state � with 4 Electoral College votes at stake -- Dixville Notch consistently leans Republican. The last Democrat it picked was Hubert Humphrey over Richard Nixon in 1968.

President Bush won the town in a landslide in the last two elections: He captured 73 per cent of the vote in 2004 (19 residents picked Bush while six preferred Sen. John Kerry), and secured 80 per cent of the vote in 2000 (21 votes for Bush, five votes for Al Gore [Images].)

But villagers expected the results to be close this year given Democrats now outnumber Republicans there.

The town picked both John McCain and Barack Obama for the New Hampshire Democratic and Republican primaries in January. McCain ultimately won the state of New Hampshire, while Hillary Clinton [Images] upset Obama there.  


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