DERRY, NH—How much Sean Hannity can one man stand? The boyish Fox News host who always looks like he'd rather be tailgating stopped by the Hood Middle School right around the time Mitt Romney was supposed to show. He peered around and spotted a man in a pedal-powered car of his own making, shaped and colored like a cucumber, with a latex Mike Huckabee sign flying high off the back. Peter Bagge was talking to the guy so Hannity circled around, stuck a mike in his face, and started quizzing him.
"So you're worried about global warming?" Hannity asked. "You've got a car that doesn't use any gas. What do you think of Al Gore jetting around the world in these private planes."
"I don't know," the guy (whose car bore the words GREEN GO! on the side) said. "I'm definitely worried about global warming. You see this snow melting out here?"
"Yeah," said Hannity. He commented on the Huckabee sign. "Any liberals attack you? Any Ron Paul people come after you? I had a run-in with them the other day."
I moved away from this to wait for Mitt's arrival. Twenty minutes late he decamped from an SUV with his lovely wife (she really is!) to greet a slow trickle of voters and take annoying questions from the press.
"How are you feeling today?"
"Good! We're going to win!"
"What happens if you come in second place?"
"After today we'll have the largest number of delegates!" He also muttered something (without using the names) about how if McCain wins he'd have only come in first and third in two states, and Huckabee won't come above third here, so by coming second Mitt would be a big winner. It was quite silly.
I walked over to the school and talked to a couple voters and sign-waving volunteers, including former state senator Frank Sapareto, who was spending a few hours waving for McCain as the man who defeated him, Bob Letourneau, laughed and hugged with Mitt.
"Bring me something good, Santa Claus!" said Mitt. (Letourneau has a bushy white-grey beard).
Saperato and pal John Potucek looked on, smiling. "Santa Claus came and left already," Potucek laughed.
"It feels like 2000," Sapareto said. "Exactly like 2000. We're peaking at the right time."
Sapareto said McCain connected with New Hampshire voters on most of their concerns, especially about liberty, so I asked about Ron Paul and whether he'd do well today. "He's right on the Constitution," Sapareto said. "He's right on the IRS. But I part with him on terrorism, those people want to come over here and kill us."
Below, Peter Bagge's sketch of Sean and the Green guy.