It was a clean sweep at the New Hampshire primaries Tuesday night.
Former governor Mitt Romney won the primary, taking 39 percent of votes in the New England state. For most, the results were expected, Anthony Christina, vice-chairman for the Penn State College Republicans, said.
“Given the close proximity that Massachusetts has to New Hampshire and the fact Romney owns a home in New Hampshire, it wasn’t surprising,” Christina (junior-political science and history) said.
Samuel Settle, chairman for Penn State’s Young Americans for Freedom, said early polls indicated Romney would take the lead and candidate Ron Paul would come in second.
Settle said Romney was also to break his 25-percentage threshold that has held him back in polls before the primary, which was an important thing for him to do.
Deb Flavin, the secretary and executive director for the Centre County Republican Committee, said Paul and former governor of Utah Jon Huntsman split the independent vote. Paul received 23 percent of the votes, while Huntsman secured third place with 17 percent.
Christina said he isn’t counting out Paul just yet.
“His second-place finish shows the strength the movement of his campaign,” he said. “It is a movement.”
Settle said he was disappointed in Huntsman’s finish and doesn’t seeing him doing well in the South Carolina primary, but has to head to the Florida primary to see what his support is there before dropping out of the race.
Christina said he was surprised as well that Huntsman didn’t finish second because he had spent a lot of money and time in New Hampshire. He said he is curious to see how Huntsman re-evaluates his campaign.
Romney was able to secure the vote in New Hampshire because he gained popularity there, Flavin said.
“I think the party is looking for this candidate to be the president,” she said. “I think Iowa was that case, and it was seen in New Hampshire.”
Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum battled with former Georgia Senator Newt Gingrich for fourth place, with close to 10 percent of the votes, with governor of Texas, Rick Perry, coming in at last again.
“[Santorum] spent so much time and logistics in Iowa and wasn’t able to campaign in New Hampshire as Romney did,” Christina said.
Christina said the voters between Iowa and New Hampshire are also different and vote that way as well.
“Santorum was good for Iowa,” he said. “You can never replicate that in another state.”
Flavin said she doesn’t see anyone dropping out after New Hampshire, and candidates will wait until after the South Carolina primary on Jan. 21 or the Florida primary on Jan. 31.
“Some are still saying there may not be a solid nominee until April,” Flavin said.
Christina said the nomination is far from over.