9:49 pm ET — with 52% reporting (per MSNBC):
While waiting for the New Hampshire results to start tumbling it, CNN showed live video of Air Force One ready to take off with George Bush aboard. Our Prez is leaving the country, en route to the Middle East. His escape seemed a perfect metaphor for what’s happening in New Hampshire today, where voters are turning out in record numbers to express their disapproval of a failed Presidency.
CNN’s early exit polls tell the story. When asked how they feel about the Bush Presidency, the results were stunning:
Those voting Republican:
Enthusiastic – 10 percent
Satisfied, but not enthusiastic – 40 percent
Dissatisfied, but not angry – 33 percent
Angry – 16 percent
Those voting Democratic:
Enthusiastic – 2 percent
Satisfied, but not enthusiastic – 4 percent
Dissatisfied, but not angry – 28 percent
Angry – 65 percent
The media are reporting huge turnout; a story earlier today said some local polling places were frantically calling the capital begging for more ballots — Democratic ballots. Let it sink in.
We’re seeing a tough battle between the candidates. But it’s also clear these primaries are turning into a referendum on the Bush/Cheney regime, and the results are unmistakable.
The country is fed up with this regime and they’re ready to come out in record numbers to register not only their hope for change but their disgust and rejection of an Administration that has embarrassed and shamed the country.
Before the results came in, Chris Matthews tried to spin this as a rejection of Hillary. Bill Clinton tried today to blame unfair media coverage for the Obama surge, but I think he could help Hillary more by explaining that many Americans are projecting their hopes that a Democratic Administration will be the opposite of the lawless regime we’ve seen for the last seven years; then he should get out the way and let Hillary tap into that hope if she can. It’s a powerful force and it’s sweeping the country. And it’s about time.
UPDATE: Results with 46 percent of precincts reporting:
Clinton , Hillary Dem 46,206 39%
Obama , Barack Dem 43,118 36%
Edwards , John Dem 19,856 17%
Richardson , Bill Dem 5,420 5%
Kucinich , Dennis Dem 1,717 1%