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Pat Buchanan and Gary Hart returned to New Hampshire yesterday and expressed their support for New Hampshire’s first-in-the-nation primary status.

According to today’s Concord Monitor, Pat Buchanan called the New Hampshire primary “a bastion of fairness and justice for the candidates who do not come into this as front-runners, with all the publicity, media and attention.”

Buchanan was the winner of the state’s 1996 Republican primary. He was being honored by the New Hampshire Political Library for his contribution to the primary. It is, he said, “indispensable” to the presidential nominating process.

Hart, who was also being honored at the event, told reporters that the free publicity and media attention candidates receive in a small state like New Hampshire is invaluable. 

“If you eliminate that, if you take that away, then the only people, it seems to me, who can run for president are those with tens, if not hundreds, of millions of dollars who run media campaigns in the populated states,” Hart said. “That narrows the gene pool dangerously, in my opinion. Then it’s all power politics.”

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