The Democratic National Party is coming after New Hampshire’s first in the nation primary -- making a public push to change the rules to allow other states to apply for the coveted spot.
At the Airport Diner in Manchester, a popular stop on the campaign trail almost every candidate, people say the primary is a source of pride for Granite staters and they can’t imagine it any other way.
New Hampshire is the home of retail politics.
"The candidates come up here and they will meet you at the dump and talk to you about what their policies are," Lee Harrop from Mont Vernon explained.
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Hosting the first in the nation primary isn’t just a tradition - it’s a state law.
"We’ve always been the first and we should stay the first," one diner said.
After a century of hosting the nation’s first primary election -- the coveted spot is no longer guaranteed for New Hampshire. The Democratic National Committee voted to change to rules - allowing states to submit applications to be considered “early” voting states, before Super Tuesday.
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The main reason for the change - the DNC says it wants to ensure the nominating process is more reflective of the party’s values.
"New Hampshire is going up against a principal - a principal of diversity a principal that early voting states should reflect the increasing diversity of the national democratic party and its voters," Dante Scala, a political science professor at the University of New Hampshire explained.
Gov. Chris Sununu said this might be the biggest threat the state has seen, but he's confident a 100-year history of holding the nation's first primary is enough to protect the state's long-held tradition.
"We do our elections right, we keep it as a very open process, there's a lot of integrity in that system," Sununu said.
And while a few Granite staters are focusing on the fact that their vote will count just the same, most people are calling on state leaders to fiercely defend the first in the nation privilege.
That’s exactly what the secretary of state is promising to do.