Jan. 8 - New Hampshire readies itself for next week's primary as candidates jockey for position in the final days. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
TV AND WEB RESTRICTIONS~*USA/CNN/AOL/YAHOO/INTERNET/WIRELESS* **~ New Hampshire. On January 10th the state will host the second state-by-state contests to pick a Republican presidential nominee. The Republican hopefuls are out in force across the state. In Concord, residents felt the weight of responsibility of participating in the country's first primary. (SOUNDBITE) (English) AMY, NEW HAMPSHIRE VOTER SAYING: "The people in New Hampshire seem to really get involved in the voting process. People take their voting privilege seriously so they really look into the issues they really look into the candidates and I think it really gets other people involved in the process." (SOUNDBITE) (English) JOE GUADAGNO, NEW HAMPSHIRE VOTER SAYING: "It's important to us to hear different points of view and it's important to us to recognize that different candidates can represent different things, that Republican doesn't always mean all one thing and Democrat doesn't always mean all one thing and we want to get the right decision for our future." Romney, the front-running former governor of neighboring Massachusetts, is expected to win in New Hampshire by a large margin. But second and third place-finishers could disrupt his march toward the nomination to challenge President Barack Obama in November's election. Runners up in the race include former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum, who came in a close second to Romney in Iowa. Texas Congressman Ron Paul, is also a contender. Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, is hoping to recover from a poor showing in Iowa. Former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman, who skipped Iowa, will need a strong showing in New Hampshire to stay in the race. SOUNDBITE) (English) DEAN SPILIOTES, POLITICAL ANALYST AND PROFESSOR FROM SOUTHERN NEW HAMPSHIRE UNIVERSITY "The interesting dynamic this time around is you have Mitt Romney, who all along has seemed like the likely nominee, and then you have this group of conservatives trying to be an alternative to him, because clearly there is some dissatisfaction with Romney among some voters in the party and they'll all splitting the vote right now," A big win in New Hampshire and then a victory in the next vote in South Carolina would all but give Romney a stranglehold on the Republican presidential nomination. Deborah Lutterbeck, Reuters