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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Can Jeb Bush's ground game deliver?

A Rubio badge as worn by Adam Hasner in Bedford, N.H.

Alex Leary | Times

A Rubio badge as worn by Adam Hasner in Bedford, N.H.



Hundreds of Florida supporters of Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush spent the last few days in New Hampshire staffing events, making phone calls and knocking on their doors. With more than 20 percent of voters saying they could change their mind today, the ground game is critical.

And Bush seems to have an advantage. No other Republican has reached out to voters more, according to Monmouth University polling data. Thirty-one percent of likely GOP voters say they had been contact by the Bush campaign. For Rubio, it was 22 percent.

“Now I think it’s a question of who’s going to come and turn out," Bush said Tuesday on Fox & Friends. "Are the independent voters going to participate in our primary or the Democratic primary? And we have a great ground game here and I’m optimistic but you just got to put it in the hands of the voters here.”

Rubio visited precincts Tuesday and tamped down expectations and the supposed "3-2-1" strategy -- reflecting finishes in Iowa, N.H. and S.C.  “That was never our strategy,” Rubio said in Windham. “We want to get as many delegates as we can out of these states.” In Derry, he said, "We got seven delegates last week, only one less than Ted Cruz who won. We're going to get more here tonight and we're going to keep going and we feel great."

New Hampshire Voter Contacts

1. Hillary Clinton (13 / 39)
2. Bernie Sanders (13 / 35)
3. Jeb Bush (31 / 8)
4. John Kasich (26 / 8)
5. Ted Cruz (22 / 10)
6. Marco Rubio (22 / 8)
7. Donald Trump (19 / 9)
8. Chris Christie (17 / 7)
9. Carly Fiorina (16 / 4)
10. Ben Carson (11 / 5)

Per Monmouth, the first number in parenthesis is the percentage of likely Republican voters who report being contacted by someone promoting that candidate. The second number is the percentage of likely Democratic voters who say the same.

[Last modified: Tuesday, February 9, 2016 1:24pm]


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