Small New Hampshire towns release first election results shortly after midnight

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

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Everything You Need to Know Before You Vote

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

The Associated Press reports that the first results of the 2016 United States presidential election are in, thanks to three small New Hampshire towns called Dixville Notch, Hart's Location and Millsfield.

Polling locations in the tiny precincts opened shortly after midnight on Tuesday. State law dictates that “communities with fewer than 100 voters can get permission to open their polls at midnight and close them as soon as all registered voters have cast their ballots.”

USA Today reports that Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton took Dixville Notch (4-2). She also took Hart's Location (17-14), while Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump took Millsfield by an overwhelming margin (16-4). In the end, Trump received more midnight votes than Clinton (32-25).

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Libertarian presidential nominee Gary Johnson also won three votes in Hart’s Location. Former Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), former Republican presidential candidate Gov. John Kasich (R-Ohio), and 2012 Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney received write-in votes.

Politico reports that a midnight vote once resulted in a tie. During the 2012 election between Romney and incumbent President Barack Obama, the candidates received five votes each in Dixville Notch.

The voting practice dates back to 1960. That year, all of Dixville Notch’s nine votes went toward Republican presidential nominee Richard Nixon’s first presidential bid. Nixon, however, did not go on to win his first presidential term until the 1968 election.

Sadly, the citizens of Dixville Notch are in danger of losing their right to vote at midnight as the development of a new ski resort in the area could encourage a population boom.

New Hampshire is considered a huge battleground state going into Election Day.

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Though Clinton had an advantage over her Republican challenger throughout much of the election, Trump came on strong in the last few days and weeks of campaigning.

Polls from one week before election day showed that Clinton's lead had gone down to 1 percent over Trump. Statistician Nate Silver wrote last week that if Trump won New Hampshire, the electoral roadmap for both candidates could end up in an unprecedented tie. Despite Clinton's dwindling numbers, Silver predicted a silver lining for the former secretary of state.

“If Clinton lost New Hampshire but won her other firewall states, each candidate would finish with 269 electoral votes, taking the election to the House of Representatives,” Silver wrote.

"Or maybe not — if Clinton also lost the 2nd Congressional District of Maine, where polls show a tight race and where the demographics are unfavorable to her, Trump would win the Electoral College 270-268, probably despite losing the popular vote."

During the 2016 primary, Trump won 35 percent of the vote in New Hampshire, and captured 11 of 22 delegates in the process. Clinton was not as popular. She received fewer votes than Sanders and only captured nine of a possible 24 delegates.