Tiny Community May Lose First-in-the-Nation Vote

Dixville Notch is short one official to allow vote to take place
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Dec 23, 2019 1:30 PM CST
Tiny Dixville Notch May Lose Traditional Midnight Vote
In this Nov. 4, 2008, file photo, Dixville Notch residents wait for the stroke of midnight to be the first voters for the nation's presidential election in Dixville Notch, N.H.   (AP Photo/Cheryl Senter, File)

A tiny, isolated community near the Canadian border known for casting ballots just after the stroke of midnight in presidential elections may need to forfeit that tradition in 2020. Dixville Notch, New Hampshire, has been in the spotlight for years for voting first in the state's first-in-the-nation presidential primary and in November general elections. But the attorney general's office says the community is currently missing a required official in order to hold an election come the Feb. 11 primary, per the AP. For years, Dixville Notch attracted political candidates and a lot of media, but that is now at risk.

The attorney general's office says Dixville Notch needs a moderator, town clerk, two selectmen, two elections supervisors, and a ballot clerk to hold its own election. One person can wear more than one hat regarding some, but not all, of the positions. But one of the five residents who was a selectman moved away, creating a vacancy. If it's not filled, Dixville Notch's four residents will need to contact the secretary of state's office for assistance in joining nearby municipalities in order to vote. Dixville Notch is believed to have reached its peak voting population in 1988. In the general election that year, 34 residents voted for Republican George H.W. Bush, and three voted for Democrat Michael Dukakis.

(More Dixville Notch stories.)

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