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In New Hampshire, Torn Between
Democrats and Ties to Romney

VIDEO | At The Diners: Elaine Boule

MANCHESTER, N.H., -- Ask Elaine Boule about Republicans and she frowns. The manager of the Red Arrow diner in Manchester seems likely to vote Democratic this year.

But then mention Mitt Romney, the former Republican governor of Massachusetts who is running for president, and her face lights up. "Mitt Romney was there for my husband's family," she says, explaining that her husband's younger brother was killed in Iraq and that Romney, as governor, helped return his effects to the family. He even attended the funeral, she said. "There was no body to send back," she said. "Mitt Romney cut through the red tape. ... He did so much for the family that if I was gonna decide to go Republican this year, Mitt Romney would probably be the person I would vote for."

That's a much different response than Romney got when he actually visited the Red Arrow earlier this month and was confronted by waitress Michele Griffin. "What about our nation? How 'bout the USA? C'mon!" Griffin yelled at Romney, sparking a 10-minute argument about health care.

But despite her admiration for Romney, Boule said she's still leaning toward voting for a Democrat, largely because of health care, an issue that affects her personally. Boule has five children -- two of whom are still at home -- and no health insurance. She said she takes them to the doctor only when she absolutely has to. "You know what I mean, they really have to be sick," she said.

Boule worked for years at a company which provided good, cheap health insurance. But when she was laid off and took the job at the Red Arrow, that lifeline disappeared. She said buying insurance for herself, her husband and her two kids is more than she can afford.

"Thats a family plan and that's a good thousand dollars a month," she said. "And then you have your presecription costs and you have, you know, your doctors fees. I just cant afford to do that."

When one of her daughters recently had a toothache, she took her to a clinic and paid $60. The dentist wanted to do more, but she declined.

"Seriously, she needs to have some work done and I can't afford to do that," she said.

Who will remedy that situation?

Boule said "I'm still leaning towards Hillary [Clinton]," but added that "Geez, I'm feeling awful bad for Barack Obama...just because I think he's such a nice guy and he's smart and you know I think he's probably got a good chance at it, but you know, they keep telling him he's so inexperienced."

"I feel bad for the guy," she said.

--Michael D. Shear

By Washington Post editors  |  August 27, 2007; 11:38 AM ET
Categories:  A_Blog , The Diners  
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Comments

Mitt will give a great story and the one above sounds nice. I noticed Mitts 5 sons aren't in the Military as we're short of a few good men. My daughter is in Afghanistan yet Mitt keeps his sons safe at home and is looking to stay the course with others children dying not his. His health care was so funny has he now says he did it by himself. Yet the video on the day of the signing he says it was only with the help of Senator Kennedy. Mitt isn't a people person he's a spoiled rich kid. He's trying to do what his Father couldn't that is buy the election. Mitt like Bush skipped out of serving the US Military when he was called yet he has all the answers now. Senator Craig supported Mitt and helped him get votes yet in Craig's hour of need Mitt kicked him out. Mitt even said Bill Clinton was like Craig now that was funny, but it showed how low Mitt is. I wonder if Larry Flint has a closet secret on pretty boy Mitt? The GOP has a way of using Religion and Values/Morals yet doing things totally different. Mitt isn't qualified to be President but Americans let an idiot get in office twice so who knows. Our national debt is 8 Trillion dollars thanks to the Bush Administration and the GOP, now Mitt wants to get some of the US money for himself.
Looking at the candidates by only experience and qualifications Hillary Clinton stands alone. Fred Thompson is still trying to clear up his criminal past before joining in as he was the leaker for the Nixon Watergate Scandal and much much more crimes after that. Rudy and his wives will be in charge of the US. McCain can't even afford a plane ride and notice he failed in handling his campaign funds what would he do with handling the US economy.

Posted by: qqbDEyZW | August 29, 2007 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Having lived in europe, universal health care is the way to go.
Obama's "inexperience" is rather touted by traditional media, not Hilary Clinton.
Romney will say/do anything for higher office, see how he tossed Craig under the bus.
End the war NOW! Support the troops.

Posted by: abiodunaodeleye | August 29, 2007 12:55 PM | Report abuse

I loved hearing this about Mitt. I started this campaign as an Obama fan, but the more I learn about the issues, the more I dislike Obama and the more I love Mitt. My only concern with him has been that he some times doesn't seem real. This woman's story about Mitt made him real to me. He became someone who cares about people, who does little things (like getting something for the family to bury and attending the funeral) out of the kindness of his heart. That is the kind of person I want in the White House.

Posted by: omeulixo | August 27, 2007 9:54 PM | Report abuse

You're absolutely right, Brucer1! And you know what they say - "If you think Health Care is expensive now, wait until it's free."

Let's just hope that the people who think outnumber the people who feel when it comes to the 2008 election or we will have Health Care like the DMV or unemployment or all the other wonderful govt. programs that are unweildy and unworkable.

The government fixes things until they're broken.

Keep Hillary, Obama and the rest of the Dems out of the White House with their socialistic/communist goals.

Posted by: bethtopaz | August 27, 2007 8:07 PM | Report abuse

Wow, what an amazing story! Mitt demonstrates extraordinary compassion to her and her family, but somehow she still thinks Hillary will do more for her family? Mitt has a plan that works and has actually succeeded in getting his ideas into law. Hillary is a total phony. She tried and failed, and she knows that her own approach would make health care in this country a disaster. She doesn't expect to get her plan thru congress, she just wants her talking point! What do you think would happen if the government started making it so that there was no financial cost to getting health care? Think!!! Those who have nothing but time (those with no job to go to) will fill the waiting rooms, while those who do work and who can't "afford" to set aside an entire day to see the doctor will realize they are now paying much more money for much worse care. At least Mitt's plan provides for reasonable universal healthcare, but doesn't do so at the expense of the system breaking. Hillary is banking on the scare factor in the hopes that people like Elaine don't figure out that she and her plan are complete phonies!. Hillary already tried and failed. Mitt has actually succeeded in getting his ideas into action. He's a proven compassionate leader!!!

Posted by: Brucer1 | August 27, 2007 5:09 PM | Report abuse

First of all Mitt is trying to sell his plan and the reality is his plan is realy Hillary's plan I have read all the canidates plans and the real reality is that Hillary is where they got the idea from. The GOP spin machine is so afarid of Hillary because this will prove that it was a witch hunt on her and Bill so give it up. Hillary will make a great President and I for one voted for Bill twice and I will vote for her twice. I mean a goat would do a better job then what we have now.

Posted by: antonio3 | August 27, 2007 4:12 PM | Report abuse

This is a perfect example of how effective Hillary's smear machine has been. Ms Boule, if you're reading....

OBAMA HAS MORE EXPERIENCE in elected office than edwards or Hillary clinton!

Obama not only has the right experience, he is able to work with democrats and republicans alike in order to get things done, and has the wisdom, judgement, and LEADERSHIP THAT HILLARY LACKS.

PLEASE PLEASE look beyond the rhetoric the Hillary campaign keeps repeating. Obama is not inexperienced.

Hillary Clinton works for the insurance companies and HMOs. They pay Hillary ALOT of money, not Obama. Hillary won't work for you. I, too, need health insurance, and i know Hillary is working too closely with the corporations to help people like us. (And Edwards' plan is just to force everyone to buy the insurance you can't afford now.)

Posted by: julieds | August 27, 2007 12:53 PM | Report abuse

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