In Nashua, McCain Frenzy and High Turnout
By Lois Romano
NASHUA, N.H. -- It was a rough start for Gene and JoAnne Godfrey, 74 and 73, respectively. The frail couple desperately wanted to cast their ballots for John McCain this morning at one of the largest and busiest voting stations, but they were forced to trudge through a snow drift by an unlikely culprit: McCain's own campaign entourage.
As the candidate's bus crawled into the Ward 1 polling venue -- McCain's only public event today -- it was immediately overtaken by a media scrum and supporters shouting "MAC IS BACK!!"
When McCain disembarked, the mob hysteria kicked in and he and wife Cindy could barely move. The Godfreys, meanwhile, had nowhere to walk and struggled through the knee high snow, as several McCain supporters tried to help the frail couple.
"Tell him he's about to run down some real votes," JoAnne said as she held tightly onto her husband. The couple said they were independents who were going to change their registration this morning to vote for McCain, as voters here are permitted to do.
Back near the bus, the McCains were literally pinned inside an aggressive circle of people as they tried to walk a few feet. After about three or four minutes, they gave up and boarded the bus again.
Nick Dahl, an election board official, said turnout at this station so far was up about 25 percent over 2004, and many independents and first time voters were showing up. As for the Godfreys, upon their departure, they said they did indeed vote for the Arizona senator. And thankfully, they didn't have to take the same route back to their car.
Washington Post editors
January 8, 2008; 10:57 AM ET
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