United States Senate election in New Hampshire, 1996

United States Senate election in New Hampshire, 1996
New Hampshire
November 5, 1996

Nominee Bob Smith Richard Swett
Party Republican Democratic
Popular vote 242,304 227,397
Percentage 49.2% 46.1%

U.S. Senator before election

Bob Smith

Elected U.S. Senator

Bob Smith

The 1996 United States Senate election in New Hampshire was held on November 4, 1996. Incumbent Republican U.S. Senator Bob Smith won re-election to a second term. Smith had established himself as the most conservative Senator from the Northeast, and Bill Clinton's coattails nearly caused his defeat. On the night of the election many American media networks incorrectly projected that Swett had won.[1]

Major candidates




General election results[2]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Bob Smith 242,304 49.2
Democratic Richard Swett 227,397 46.1
Libertarian Ken Blevens 22,265 4.5


  1. Crabtree, Susan (December 2, 1996). "1996 Ad". Insight on the News. Retrieved 2012-04-29. An incorrect exit poll by Voter News Service, or VNS, resulted in an early and ultimately incorrect projection of victory in New Hampshire for Democratic Senate candidate Dick Swett over Republican incumbent Sen. Robert C. Smith. "Every election night, you know, its cardiac-arrest time in some state, in some race - sometimes in several races," CBS' Dan Rather explained at 9:40 p.m. EST. "This race is as hot and tight as a too-small bathing suit on a too-long car ride back from the beach." But the network "oops" came too late for a number of newspapers that featured Swett's exit-poll victory in their early editions.
  2. http://www.ourcampaigns.com/RaceDetail.html?RaceID=177

See also

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