Once every four years, for a brief moment, it seems the whole world turns its eyes to Dixville Notch. Since 1960, voters in this tiny Coos County community have been casting their ballots just after the stroke of midnight to mark the official start of the New Hampshire presidential primary. Of course, Dixville Notch isn’t the only place in New Hampshire that opens its polls at midnight. But it’s kept its tradition running the longest, so it gets most of the press coverage. But Dixville Notch has lately found itself under a different kind of spotlight: from the New Hampshire attorney general’s office.
Shortly after the 2016 election, state election investigators started scrutinizing Dixville Notch’s voter checklist and, along the way, found a pattern of potential problems with its election procedures.
As one investigator put it, in a report shared with NHPR, “What started out as an investigation into a complaint involving one voter, who may not have been a resident of Dixville … has appeared to uncover a potentially more pervasive issue with respect to the process in Dixville as a whole.”
The people singled out in the state’s investigation maintain they did nothing wrong, that Dixville Notch’s elections are “absolutely trustworthy” and that the attorney general’s office seemed to blow the situation out of proportion.