Sunday, August 06, 2006

RICHARDSON ON NEW HAMPSHIRE

I didn't cover Gov. Bill Richardson's latest trip to New Hampshire like I did on one of his trips last year. For one thing I was on vacation this time. For another, it doesn't sound like he said much new up there this time.

The governor, just like in June 2005, went there not to campaign for president (wink, wink, nudge, nudge) but to help fellow New Hampshire's Democratic Gov. John Lynch (yeah, that's the ticket ...)

Once again he made headlines by stoutly defending New Hampshire's right to have the earliest primary. A year ago I quoted him at a Manchester breakfast saying, "Besides the fact that it’s your birthright, you are the grass-roots state."

"Being from New Mexico, I believe very strongly in a Western primary. People from the West should have a say in who is chosen for president. The people of Keene should have the same right as the people of Manchester, " he joked that day. (Read my original report HERE )

Late last year, in an interview with Time magazine, Richardson spoke of the "divine right" of early primary states. (I had fun with that one in my Dec. 8 column.)

By the way, if anyone's keeping count, last week was Richardson's fourth trip -- at least -- to New Hampshire since becoming governor of New Mexico.

UPDATE: According to the Journal's Mike Coleman, there was one difference between this summer's trip to New Hampshire and last summer's.

No speeding.

Richardson joked (or was he serious?) that his driver didn't speed because New Hampshire's two-lane highways are congested, and a reporter tailed behind them in a rental car everywhere they went.

Or maybe he just had bad memories of this column last year. CLICK HERE

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