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Westlake Legal Group > Posts tagged "Trump, Donald J" (Page 60)

New Hampshire Updates: Sanders Leads Buttigieg in Tight Democratic Primary

ImageWestlake Legal Group merlin_168797352_c4794137-29f8-4af1-97d7-6834992733b8-articleLarge New Hampshire Updates: Sanders Leads Buttigieg in Tight Democratic Primary Yang, Andrew (1975- ) Warren, Elizabeth Trump, Donald J Steyer, Thomas F Sanders, Bernard Republican Party Primaries and Caucuses Presidential Election of 2020 New Hampshire Klobuchar, Amy Democratic Party Buttigieg, Pete (1982- ) Biden, Joseph R Jr

Attendees at Bernie Sanders’s primary night party at Southern New Hampshire University Field House in Manchester.Credit…Chang W. Lee/The New York Times

  • With over half of precincts reporting in New Hampshire’s Democratic primary, Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont was leading Pete Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Ind. Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota was firmly in third place, several percentage points behind Mr. Buttigieg, surpassing expectations for her performance in the state.

  • Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. were well behind. Both addressed supporters early in the night, pledging to continue the primary fight.

  • Two of the lowest-polling candidates ended their bids: The entrepreneur Andrew Yang and Senator Michael Bennet of Colorado. Their exits winnowed the Democratic field to nine candidates.

  • There was also a Republican primary, which President Trump won handily, The Associated Press reported.

  • There are 24 delegates up for grabs for the Democrats, a relatively tiny number given that a candidate needs 1,991 delegates to win the party’s presidential nomination.

  • Follow along with the results and live coverage from our reporters here.

Here’s what you need to know:

We’re starting to get a sense of how the New Hampshire race is shaping up, with more than half of precincts reporting.

Mr. Sanders is in the lead, followed by Mr. Buttigieg. Ms. Klobuchar is mounting a surprisingly strong challenge, a few points behind in third place.

Hailing from just over the border with Vermont, Mr. Sanders was the overwhelming favorite in the contest. If the two Midwestern moderates keep the margins close, it could presage a longer battle for the nomination.

The results do not look good so far for Ms. Warren and Mr. Biden.

Ms. Warren remains far behind the top three, with numbers that have to disappoint her supporters, despite an effort by her campaign to describe her path forward in terms of accumulating delegates on a district-by-district level, rather than carrying entire states.

Mr. Biden, who worked hard to lower expectations, is stuck behind her in single digits. Two brutal losses may further undercut the central argument for his candidacy: that the former vice president is the most electable in the field.

Mr. Biden all but knew the results would be bleak. He left the state earlier on Tuesday after telegraphing his bad finish in Friday’s debate.

But Ms. Warren, as a neighboring senator, had designs more recently on a strong New Hampshire finish that could have served as a springboard toward Super Tuesday. But that nearby state factor did not seem to be helping in Massachusetts-bordering Salem, where 100 percent of precincts were reported and Ms. Warren was in fifth place with 6.9 percent of the vote.

Praising her “happy, scrappy campaign,” Ms. Klobuchar, who finished fifth in Iowa, celebrated like a victor on Tuesday night, as it appeared as though she would come in third.

“While there are still ballots left to count, we have beaten the odds every step of the way,” she declared.

With 60 percent of precincts in, Ms. Klobuchar was just shy of 20 percent of the vote — putting her on course to win delegates in the state.

“Because of you, we are taking this campaign to Nevada,” she said. “We are going to South Carolina. And we are taking this message of unity to the country.”

Ms. Klobuchar spoke about her grit, and grinned as she recounted the debate performance last Friday that appear to propel her rise in the state.

“Just like so many of you out there, I know a little bit about resilience,” she said.

Mr. Biden pledged on Tuesday night that he would emerge victorious in the next two nominating contests, after dismal results in the New Hampshire primary and the Iowa caucuses.

“We’re going on and we’re going to win in Nevada and in South Carolina,” Mr. Biden told supporters gathered in a hotel ballroom in Nashua, N.H., for his primary night party, appearing via live stream from Columbia, S.C.

Mr. Biden was supposed to attend that party in person, but his campaign announced Tuesday morning that he would leave for South Carolina instead. Mr. Biden, who is not known for his brevity, spoke for under three minutes, using the time to express thanks to his supporters in the state.

“We’re going to be back,” he said. “We’re going to be back in New Hampshire. We’re going to be back there to defeat Donald Trump in November.”

Mr. Biden also addressed supporters in Columbia, emphasizing his support in the black community and noting that 99.9 percent of the country’s black voters had not yet cast ballots.

“That’s the opening bell, not the closing bell,” he told the crowd. “You cannot win the Democratic nomination for president, and you shouldn’t be able to win it, without black and brown supporters.”

Ms. Warren addressed supporters early Tuesday evening, conceding that she was likely to finish in fourth place.

She sought to play down the results, suggesting a long primary fight, and she congratulated her rivals before issuing some of her most direct criticism of them yet.

Ms. Warren mentioned her fellow candidates by name, saying that she respected Mr. Sanders and Mr. Buttigieg but that they represented small factions of the Democratic Party.

She spoke about the uptick in negative advertisements in the primary and the behavior of some candidates’ supporters. Ms. Warren framed it as “harsh tactics” not befitting a Democratic nominee.

“Harsh tactics might work if you’re willing to burn down the party, in order to be the last man standing,” she said. “We will need a nominee that the broadest coalition of our party feels they can get behind.”

She also tossed a compliment to Ms. Klobuchar. “I also want to congratulate my friend and colleague Amy Klobuchar for showing just how wrong the pundits can be when they count a woman out,” she said.

Ms. Warren’s early results were disappointing for the senator of a neighboring state, once hailed as a Democratic primary front-runner. Now, instead of leading from a position of strength, she was discussing plans to cobble together delegates throughout the country.

“I’m here to get big things done,” Ms. Warren said. “Our best chance for this party and this nation is with a candidate who can do the work.”

“Our campaign is built for the long haul, and we’re just getting started.”

Ashley Tauber, 42, a supporter of Ms. Warren, said before the speech that she expected the senator to win states that were more diverse and voted later.

“New Hampshire isn’t the full picture,” she said. “She needs more diversity of income and of thought and other races of people.”

Donald Long, 58, said he was perturbed by the rise of Mr. Buttigieg.

“Now is not the time for a middle-of-the-road candidate,” he said.

Ms. Tauber jumped in: “That’s where roadkill happens.”

Supporters filled a college gymnasium for Mr. Sanders’s primary night party. Cheers echoed around the room as the big screen, which had been displaying the Sanders campaign logo, switched to CNN. Even bigger cheers came when CNN showed Mr. Sanders in first place with the votes flowing in.

Expectations in the room were high — for good reason. The state is in Mr. Sanders’s backyard, and he won the New Hampshire primary in 2016 against Hillary Clinton by 22 percentage points. Tons of reporters were here, and the fire marshal said he was expecting to let in 1,000 supporters, then assess if there was room for more. Anything less than a victory would be a major disappointment.

A stage was set up at the front of the room, with American flags and Sanders signs. Every time new numbers came in, there was more cheering. A concession stand outside the gymnasium sold pizza and popcorn.

There was no sign of Mr. Sanders yet, but some of his senior staff members were milling around. They were in a good mood.

“I’m excited to get results on the same night people voted,” said Mike Casca, the top spokesman for the Sanders campaign, when asked how he was feeling.

At the Buttigieg headquarters in Nashua, there was optimism about the New Hampshire results and some trepidation about the future.

“I know it’s going to be more of a struggle after this,” said Tara Maden, a 49-year-old from Nashua who works for the Dartmouth-Hitchcock health care system. “He’s doing better with the minorities than he was early on and he’s getting more name recognition.”

Betty Buckley, a 52-year-old graphic designer from Pembroke, N.H., predicted second place here and trouble ahead.

“South Carolina is going to be where everyone thinks he won’t do as well,” she said. “It depends on whether he can bring out people of color. They don’t know him. But a year ago he was unknown to all of us.”

Both women described themselves as independent voters who had backed Senator John McCain, a Republican, in 2008. “Though when he picked Sarah Palin, then I was out,” Ms. Maden said.

Their support for Mr. Buttigieg helps explain both why his appeal to independent and Republican voters has served him well in Iowa and New Hampshire and why he faces more hurdles in subsequent states.

Black voters dominate South Carolina’s Democratic primary electorate — they are not voters who backed Mr. McCain. The coming weeks will show whether Mr. Buttigieg can expand his coalition beyond the older, relatively centrist white voters who have propelled his rise in Iowa and New Hampshire.

According to CNN’s exit polls, Ms. Klobuchar won a plurality of New Hampshire voters with a college degree, with 28 percent of their support, as well as white women who had graduated college, with 34 percent.

Mr. Sanders prevailed among white voters without a college degree, taking 29 percent, but Mr. Buttigieg won the most votes of white women without a degree, with 27 percent.

The exit polls, which surveyed about 2,500 voters, offered a snapshot of New Hampshire voters on Tuesday night.

Nineteen percent of those who voted in the Democratic primary called themselves “very liberal,” and 42 percent were “somewhat liberal.” Mr. Sanders won both groups. Among the 35 percent who described themselves as moderate, Ms. Klobuchar prevailed.

Mr. Buttigieg won among voters who earned more than $100,000 per year.

The collapse of Mr. Biden could be starkly seen in the preferences of voters by age. Mr. Biden was unable to win those over 65, traditionally his strongest supporters, nor did he prevail among union households, another supposed source of strength.

It was Mr. Sanders who did best with union voters, taking 31 percent, while Ms. Klobuchar was the top pick of those over 65.

In all, about one in three voters were under 45, and Mr. Sanders easily won their support. Sixty-five percent of voters were older than 45. Ms. Klobuchar prevailed with them.

About one in seven had never cast a ballot in a Democratic primary. Mr. Buttigieg, who campaigned on a message of welcoming independents and “future former Republicans,” won a plurality, with 25 percent.

On issues that mattered most to voters, Mr. Sanders won among those who listed health care and income inequality; Mr. Buttigieg was the first choice of those who cared most about foreign policy and climate change.

In terms of candidates’ qualities, a plurality wanted a nominee who can bring “needed change,” and Mr. Sanders was their favorite. Ms. Klobuchar was the top pick for those seeking someone to unite the country — a message she and Mr. Buttigieg both want to make their own.

Three in five voters said it was more important to nominate someone who can beat President Trump than one who agrees with them on issues. Mr. Buttigieg was their top pick. Mr. Sanders was the favorite candidate on issues.

The exit polls examined other attitudes about candidate qualities. Four in five said a candidate’s age was not important. About one in three said nominating a woman would make it harder to beat Mr. Trump.

Mr. Yang and Mr. Bennet ended their longer-than-long-shot bids for president on Tuesday night.

Mr. Yang made the announcement at his primary night party. Speaking to supporters inside a ballroom in Manchester, Mr. Yang said that “endings are hard” and that he had intended to stay in the race until the end.

“I am the math guy, and it’s clear from the numbers we’re not going to win this campaign,” he said. “So tonight I’m announcing that I am suspending my campaign.”

Both Mr. Yang and Mr. Bennet had spent considerable time and resources in the state. Mr. Bennet had staked all his hopes there, holding 50 town hall events there in the 10 weeks leading up to the primary and campaigning exclusively there in the final stretch, even on the night of the Iowa caucuses.

Another low-polling candidate, Deval Patrick, the former governor of Massachusetts, will decide on Wednesday whether to continue after getting less than 1 percent of the vote in New Hampshire.

“He’s going to take some time to evaluate what’s next for the campaign and will make a decision tomorrow,” Aleigha Cavalier, a spokeswoman for Mr. Patrick, said in a text message Tuesday night.

Mr. Patrick has never exceeded 1 percent in a debate-qualifying poll and was counting on New Hampshire — next door to his home state — to give him some traction.

Reporting was contributed by Alexander Burns, Nick Corasaniti, Sydney Ember, Reid J. Epstein, Katie Glueck, Astead W. Herndon, Thomas Kaplan, Jonathan Martin and Matt Stevens from New Hampshire, Maggie Astor and Trip Gabriel from New York, and Stephanie Saul from Columbia, S.C.

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New Hampshire Primary: Polls Have Started to Close

ImageWestlake Legal Group merlin_168790284_60fe3c09-b937-406f-a0e9-2d3a370f08b5-articleLarge New Hampshire Primary: Polls Have Started to Close Yang, Andrew (1975- ) Warren, Elizabeth Trump, Donald J Steyer, Thomas F Sanders, Bernard Republican Party Primaries and Caucuses Presidential Election of 2020 New Hampshire Klobuchar, Amy Democratic Party Buttigieg, Pete (1982- ) Biden, Joseph R Jr

Voters at a polling place at the town office in Hancock, N.H., on Tuesday.Credit…Tamir Kalifa for The New York Times

  • The New Hampshire polls start to close at 7 p.m. The secretary of state has said final numbers could arrive as early as 9:30 p.m. Follow along with results here.

  • Eight Democratic candidates are mounting competitive campaigns in New Hampshire. They are: Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, former Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Ind., Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusets, former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, the former tech executive Andrew Yang, Representative Tulsi Gabbard and the former hedge fund investor Tom Steyer.

  • There will also be a Republican primary, which President Trump is expected to win handily.

  • Polls show a close race between Mr. Sanders and Mr. Buttigieg, with Ms. Warren and Ms. Klobuchar behind them, and Mr. Biden in the mix. The former vice president in particular could use a strong showing after a fourth-place finish in Iowa.

  • There are 24 delegates up for grabs, a relatively tiny number given that a candidate needs 1,991 delegates to win the party’s presidential nomination. But New Hampshire, the second nominating contest and first primary, can often provide a candidate with momentum before the Nevada caucuses and the South Carolina primary later this month, as well as the Super Tuesday states in early March.

Here’s what you need to know:

MANCHESTER, N.H. — Early primary and caucus states like New Hampshire usually help winnow the presidential field. It’s not clear that will happen tonight, or even this month.

The top two finishers in Iowa, Mr. Sanders and Mr. Buttigieg, appear likely to finish similarly here. It’s possible that one could win convincingly, or that they’ll both finish far ahead of the other candidates, potentially narrowing the race.

But it’s also plausible that New Hampshire will echo Iowa by producing such a divided result that it fails to bring the race into sharp focus. In Iowa, five candidates finished in the double digits and the top two each earned barely a quarter of the popular vote.

That lack of an overwhelming preference points to voters’ dissatisfaction with the longtime national front-runner, Mr. Biden, and uncertainty about their remaining options. For Democratic voters uncomfortable with Mr. Sanders, even a strong second-place finish for one of the other candidates could have an outsize national impact, if it signals to more moderate voters that someone else is their strongest remaining option.

Even then, there about 60 billion reasons that the race might remain in turmoil. If the early states are supposed to bring order to the race, it might be difficult for them to do that when Michael R. Bloomberg is bypassing them entirely with a self-funded campaign trained on Super Tuesday.

Here are some of the places we’re watching for early clues about how the candidates are doing.

Bedford: Four years ago, this affluent town was one of the few areas that Hillary Clinton carried in 2016, and Mr. Buttigieg sees opportunity for him to gain support with his appeals to “future former Republicans.” He stopped at a polling place in the town to thank supporters just before polls closed. But it’s also possible that Ms. Klobuchar could make some in-roads.

Claremont: A working-class town close to the Vermont border, Claremont flipped from backing Barack Obama — twice — to Donald J. Trump in 2016. Results here could offer a good barometer of white working-class views in a battleground state that’s been trending slightly more red.

Manchester and Nashua: The two largest cities in the state are some of the most racially diverse areas and include a huge part of the Democratic electorate. They’re a mix of blue- and white-collar workers, with a large number of Boston transplants living in the suburbs. A candidate who can run up their margins in these cities and the surrounding areas is probably headed for a good night.

Durham: Mr. Sanders will have to run up turnout in this town, the home of the University of New Hampshire. A Sanders rally with the Strokes brought out 7,500 people on Monday night. The size of his margin in this area will give a good indication of the kind of night he may have.

Mr. Biden’s campaign has long sought to tamp down expectations about his prospects in New Hampshire, arguing that Mr. Sanders and Ms. Warren have home-field advantages.

But now, after a disastrous fourth-place finish in Iowa, Mr. Biden is facing the possibility of a fourth- or even fifth-place result in New Hampshire.

Such a result would destroy the Biden camp’s efforts to claim the mantle as the moderate standard-bearer in the Democratic Party, threaten his fund-raising and make it difficult to generate enthusiasm heading into Nevada.

Certainly, Mr. Biden could surprise here. And his campaign has made clear that whatever the New Hampshire result, Mr. Biden is committed to testing his theory that he will do best in later-voting, more diverse states like South Carolina.

The question is what the state of his money and momentum will be coming out of New Hampshire on Tuesday.

Aides to Mr. Sanders said on Tuesday that he had received 600,000 contributions in the first nine days of February, and topped seven million contributions over all in his 2020 campaign as of Sunday.

That means the Sanders campaign was processing an average of 66,666 contributions per day during that nine-day period. His average donation in January was $18.72.

If his average donation stayed steady in February, Mr. Sanders was raising nearly $1.25 million per day, or $11.2 million over all in nine days.

That donation pace was significantly faster than it was in January, when the Sanders campaign raised $25 million. His campaign said it had received 1.3 million donations in January, a 31-day period, which comes to about 42,000 per day.

Other top campaigns have not released their fund-raising totals for January or February.

The results of the New Hampshire primary may well be in the books later tonight before officials are done counting in Iowa, where the caucuses have been in chaos for over a week.

This past weekend, the Iowa Democratic Party released results showing Mr. Buttigieg with a lead of less than one-tenth of a percent in total “state delegate equivalents,’’ the metric it uses to declare a winner. But underlying problems have kept The Associated Press, which traditionally calls election winners, from awarding the state to Mr. Buttigieg.

On Monday, the campaigns of Mr. Sanders, who won the popular Iowa vote, and Mr. Buttigieg requested a “recanvass” of 143 precincts, about 8 percent of the total. The Sanders campaign said it did not expect the recanvass to change the outcome, but it was a necessary first step before requesting a “recount” — a deeper level of scrutiny — that could potentially reset the order. The state party chairman gave no timeline for the recanvass.

While many voters have moved on, and the impact of some unexpected finishes in Iowa — higher for Mr. Buttigieg, much lower for Mr. Biden — has been absorbed by voters in New Hampshire and elsewhere, supporters of Mr. Sanders seem to want to see things through, hoping for at least a moral victory.

Reporting was contributed by Sydney Ember, Reid J. Epstein, Lisa Lerer and Nick Corasaniti from Manchester, N.H., and Trip Gabriel from New York.

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Prosecutors Quit Roger Stone Case After Justice Dept. Intervenes on Sentencing

Westlake Legal Group 11dc-stone-facebookJumbo Prosecutors Quit Roger Stone Case After Justice Dept. Intervenes on Sentencing United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Stone, Roger J Jr Justice Department Barr, William P

WASHINGTON — Four prosecutors withdrew on Tuesday from the case of Roger J. Stone Jr., the longtime friend of President Trump, after senior Justice Department officials intervened to recommend a more lenient sentence for Mr. Stone, who was convicted of impeding investigators in a bid to protect the president.

The highly unusual move prompted one of the government’s key prosecutors to resign altogether. It came after federal prosecutors in Washington asked a judge late Monday to sentence Mr. Stone to seven to nine years in prison for trying to sabotage a congressional investigation that threatened Mr. Trump and the president criticized their recommendation on Twitter as “horrible and very unfair.”

As he did after a jury speedily convicted Mr. Stone on seven felony charges in November, Mr. Trump attacked federal law enforcement officials, saying “the real crimes were on the other side.”

“Cannot allow this miscarriage of justice!” Mr. Trump added.

Late on Tuesday afternoon, prosecutors submitted a new filing that made no specific sentencing recommendation, saying only that the earlier guidance was excessive and “does not accurately reflect the Department of Justice’s position on what would be a reasonable sentence.” The government still believes “incarceration is warranted” for Mr. Stone, they wrote.

“Ultimately, the government defers to the court as to what specific sentence is appropriate under the facts and circumstances of this case,” said the filing said, which was signed by John Crabb Jr., a federal prosecutor who joined the case earlier in the day. None of the four prosecutors on Monday’s memo signed it.

The development was a tumultuous turn in one of the most high-profile cases brought by the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, whose investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election cast a lengthy shadow over Mr. Trump’s presidency. Disagreements between United States attorneys and their Justice Department superiors rarely burst into public view, especially in criminal cases that have commanded the public spotlight for months.

Hours after the Justice Department said that it would lower Mr. Stone’s guidelines, a prosecutor on the case, Jonathan Kravis, told the court he had resigned “and therefore no longer represents the government in this matter.”

And two member of Mr. Mueller’s team who helped lead the prosecution of Mr. Stone, Aaron Zelinsky and Adam C. Jed, withdrew from the case. Mr. Zelinsky also resigned from a special assignment with the United States attorney’s office in Washington, though he will continue to work for the Justice Department in Baltimore. A fourth prosecutor, Michael J. Merendo, also withdrew.

Department officials defended its intervention, saying they were taken aback by the request for such a stiff sentence, according to a law enforcement official who offered the department’s view of what happened on condition of anonymity because the Stone case was ongoing.

The prosecutors had suggested a lighter prison term in discussions with Justice Department officials, the official said. The department decided to override the prosecutors’ decision soon after the sentencing memorandum was filed on Monday evening, said Kerri Kupec, a spokeswoman for the Justice Department.

She said that department officials did not discuss the case with anyone at the White House, including the president, and were not reacting to any directive from Mr. Trump or to his criticism on Twitter.

Mr. Stone, 67, was convicted in November of obstructing an investigation by the House Intelligence Committee into Russian meddling in the 2016 election, lying to investigators under oath and trying to block the testimony of a witness who would have exposed his lies. The jury deliberated for just seven hours.

Adam B. Schiff, the California Democrat who chairs the House committee, said that if the president intervened in any way to reverse the decision of career prosecutors, it would be “a blatant abuse of power.”

“Doing so would send an unmistakable message that President Trump will protect those who lie to Congress to cover up his own misconduct and that the attorney general will join him in that effort,” he said in a statement.

The Justice Department was expected to revise its sentencing memorandum in a court filing later on Tuesday. Grant Smith, a lawyer for Mr. Stone, said the defense team was “looking forward to reviewing” it. Judge Amy Berman Jackson of the Federal District Court in Washington is scheduled to sentence Mr. Stone on Feb. 20.

In their sentencing memorandum on Monday, federal prosecutors said that Mr. Stone should serve up to nine years because he threatened a witness with bodily harm, deceived congressional investigators and carried out an extensive, deliberate, illegal scheme that included repeatedly lying under oath and forging documents.

Even after he was charged in a felony indictment, the prosecutors said, Mr. Stone continued to try to manipulate the administration of justice by threatening Judge Jackson in a social media post and violating her gag orders.

The combination of those factors justified significantly increasing the range of punishment recommended under federal sentencing guidelines from 15 to 21 months to up to nine years, they said. While the guidelines are advisory, federal judges typically consider them carefully.

Defense lawyers characterized the prosecutors arguments as vastly overblown. Mr. Stone not only never intended to harm the witness, they said, he never created any real obstacle for investigators. While the witness, a New York radio host named Randy Credico, refused to testify before the House Intelligence Committee, they pointed out, he was later repeatedly interviewed by the F.B.I., appeared before the federal grand jury and testified against Mr. Stone during his trial.

In a letter asking Judge Jackson to spare Mr. Stone a prison term, Mr. Credico said that while he stood by his testimony, he never believed Mr. Stone would carry out his threat to injure him or his beloved dog. “I chalked up his bellicose tirades to ‘Stone being Stone.’ All bark and no bite,” Mr. Credico wrote.

Mr. Stone’s defense team also said that his violations of Judge Jackson’s gag orders should not count against him because the criminal proceedings had exacerbated his “longstanding battle with anxiety” and he has corrected that problem through therapy.

The decision to seek a more lenient punishment for Mr. Stone came less than two weeks after prosecutors backed off on their sentencing recommendation for Michael T. Flynn, Mr. Trump’s former national security adviser who pleaded guilty to lying to investigators in the Russia inquiry. Prosecutors had initially sought up to six months in prison, then said they would not oppose probation instead of prison time.

One of the prosecutors in the Flynn case, Brandon L. Van Grack — who had taken on the case under Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel, and continued to work on it after he left that office to rejoin the Justice Department’s national security division — did not sign the memo in support of probation, though he had signed earlier briefs in the case.

The intervention by senior Justice Department officials in Mr. Stone’s case serves as the first big test for Timothy Shea, who last Monday became the interim head of the United States attorney’s office in Washington, which is overseeing some of the department’s most politically fraught cases.

Mr. Shea, a former senior counselor in the office of Attorney General William P. Barr, now oversees investigations into two former law enforcement officials whom Mr. Trump has long perceived as political enemies: the former F.B.I. director James B. Comey, who is said to be the focus of investigators in an unusual inquiry into years-old leaks, and his former deputy Andrew G. McCabe, who faces allegations that he misled investigators in an administrative inquiry. That case has languished.

Adam Goldman contributed reporting.

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Democrats Get the Attention, but Trump Aims to Put New Hampshire in Play

Westlake Legal Group 11dc-trump-1-facebookJumbo Democrats Get the Attention, but Trump Aims to Put New Hampshire in Play United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Republican Party Primaries and Caucuses Presidential Election of 2020 Presidential Election of 2016 New Hampshire Ayotte, Kelly A

MANCHESTER, N.H. — In 2016, Donald J. Trump came within a few thousand votes of winning New Hampshire in the general election. This time around, fueled by a stockpile of donations, his campaign is looking at New Hampshire and its four electoral votes as a key target in its efforts to expand the map.

There are some factors working in his favor. Instead of a feud with one of the Republican Party’s few female senators as well as a former governor, the president has the state party apparatus backing him. And his advisers think the policies he has implemented fit the contours of the state.

But securing victory in a state that has been won by a Democrat in every presidential election since 2000 will be a test of both the president’s durability and his political operation.

Mr. Trump’s allies say the issues are with him. The unemployment rate in the state was 2.6 percent in October 2019, lower than the national figure. Mr. Trump has highlighted his administration’s efforts to stem the opioid crisis in a state that continues to rank among the top five in opioid-related deaths.

The president’s new North American trade deal, the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, affects New Hampshire businesses importing timber, syrup and dairy from Canada, campaign officials said. Officials also pointed to efforts by the Interior Department to eliminate the Seamounts Marine National Monument, located off the Atlantic Coast, as a move that appeals to New Hampshire voters because it could open up previously protected areas to commercial uses like fishing.

Corey Lewandowski, Mr. Trump’s first 2016 campaign manager and a New Hampshire resident who considered running for the Senate seat held by the Democrat Jeanne Shaheen, said that those factors, “coupled with the fact that the president should have won last time,” work in his favor — an apparent reference to the relatively little party support Mr. Trump had in his losing battle with Hillary Clinton.

Yet if the New Hampshire Republican Party now belongs to the president, it has also seen a significant decline in enrollment.

“New Hampshire is going to be a challenge for him to win in November,” said Jennifer Horn, the former New Hampshire Republican chairman and a staunch critic of Mr. Trump. “A week ago, we had more than 20,000 fewer registered Republicans than there were Election Day in 2016.”

Ms. Horn noted that Republican candidates lost large, consistently red areas in the 2018 midterm elections, and that the same thing could happen here to Mr. Trump. While other state Republicans played down concerns about the drop in party members on the voter rolls as the natural ebb and flow that happens in a state with same-day voter registration, Ms. Horn said 20,000 was “way outside the norm.”

And the state’s demographics reflect the type of place where Mr. Trump will face challenges: concentrations of working-class whites, but multitudes of college-educated voters, who polls show have been abandoning the Republican Party.

“We’ve had great success in the municipal elections, and of course we had the historic wins in 2018,” said Ray Buckley, the state Democratic chairman. “There’s a lot of energy on the ground here. We’ve built a year-round organization.”

Aware of some of the challenges ahead, the Trump campaign appears eager to get a head start.

While Pete Buttigieg was trying to emerge from the Democratic field and Joseph R. Biden Jr. was trying to stay in it, Mr. Trump turned up in Manchester for a rally Monday night and Trump surrogates fanned out Tuesday to diners and polling sites throughout the state, even though he faces only token opposition in the Republican primary.

Their mission: talk up Mr. Trump’s policies, distract attention from Democrats and set the stage for the general election.

“We’re trying to fly the Trump flag when all the action is on the other side,” said Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, who strolled into Bedford High School, just outside Manchester, to greet voters on Tuesday morning. “If the economy stays good, I think he’s very much in play here.”

Senator Rick Scott of Florida was on hand outside Manchester on Tuesday morning to paint Democrats with the brush of “socialism.” Donald Trump Jr., the president’s eldest son, spent the day at diners and high schools campaigning for his father. Representatives Steve Scalise of Louisiana, Mark Meadows of North Carolina and Greg Pence of Indiana, among others, stayed behind after Mr. Trump’s rally on Monday night and made diner visits and talked with local news media.

Two supporters who were scheduled to campaign on the ground for him — Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky and Representative Matt Gaetz of Florida — hitched a ride home Monday night on Air Force One instead, to deal with legislative matters in Washington or attend the transfer of remains for two soldiers killed over the weekend in Afghanistan. Taking their place were prominent New Hampshire Republicans, a change from four years ago.

Gov. Chris Sununu bound into a local high school, where he purchased a box of Krispy Kreme doughnuts from a student bake sale and stayed on message.

“The Trump tax cuts here worked,” he said. “The U.S.M.C.A., very powerful, for a lot of our businesses that trade with our friends to the north. The regulatory reform streamlined the process.” He also credited the administration with investing $50 million in the state to battle the opioid crisis.

The last time Mr. Trump was running, John H. Sununu, the current governor’s father and a former governor himself, questioned Mr. Trump’s history of business losses and said his coarse language was “demeaning of the office he’s seeking.”

Trump campaign officials said they blamed the president’s 2016 loss in large part on his feud with Kelly Ayotte, a senator at the time who was locked in a close re-election race and tried to thread the needle by saying she would vote for Mr. Trump but not endorse him. Ms. Ayotte lost her seat, and Mr. Trump lost the state, an outcome one campaign official described as a political murder-suicide.

Monday found Ms. Ayotte campaigning for the president at a “Cops for Trump” event with Ivanka Trump and Vice President Mike Pence. Reached on the phone on Tuesday, Ms. Ayotte hung up on a reporter. “I’m busy. I have to go,” she said when asked to comment on the state of the race in New Hampshire.

But the show of Republican force appeared to be having its desired effect of sparking fears among Democratic voters about the strength of their own candidates.

Mark Goodridge, 75, of Bedford, said he was voting for Mr. Biden. But he said he was anxious that he might lose to Mr. Trump.

“You see the Trump signs out there? Did you see how many are out there?” he asked, pointing to the pop-up stand of Trump campaign T-shirts and gear set up outside the school’s entrance.

His wife, Margaret, 76, chimed in. “I think it depends on who the Democrats pick,” she said. “If we get the right candidate … ” Her voice trailed off, before she added, “Which is kind of a worry.”

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New Hampshire Primary: What Time Polls Close and What to Watch For

ImageWestlake Legal Group merlin_168770328_072a0f02-2655-409d-9023-d802586f3767-articleLarge New Hampshire Primary: What Time Polls Close and What to Watch For Yang, Andrew (1975- ) Warren, Elizabeth Trump, Donald J Steyer, Thomas F Sanders, Bernard Republican Party Primaries and Caucuses Presidential Election of 2020 New Hampshire Klobuchar, Amy Democratic Party Buttigieg, Pete (1982- ) Biden, Joseph R Jr

Voting at Broad Street Elementary School in Nashua, N.H., on Tuesday.Credit…Tamir Kalifa for The New York Times

  • The New Hampshire polls started opening widely at 6 a.m. and will start to close at 7 p.m. The secretary of state has said final results could arrive as early as 9:30 p.m.

  • Eight Democratic candidates are mounting competitive campaigns in New Hampshire. They are: Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, former Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Ind., Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusets, former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, the former tech executive Andrew Yang, Representative Tulsi Gabbard and the former hedge fund investor Tom Steyer.

  • There will also be a Republican primary, which President Trump is expected to win handily.

  • Polls show a close race between Mr. Sanders and Mr. Buttigieg, with Ms. Warren and Ms. Klobuchar behind them, and Mr. Biden in the mix. The former vice president in particular could use a strong showing after a fourth-place finish in Iowa.

  • There are 24 delegates up for grabs, a relatively tiny number given that a candidate needs 1,991 delegates to win the party’s presidential nomination. But New Hampshire, the second nominating contest and first primary, can often provide a candidate with momentum before the Nevada caucuses and the South Carolina primary later this month, as well as the Super Tuesday states in early March.

Stay up to date on primaries and caucuses. Subscribe to “On Politics,” and we’ll send you a link to our live coverage.

MANCHESTER, N.H. — The traditional role of the early primary and caucus states is to winnow the field of presidential candidates and bestow national momentum on one or several finalists. It is far from clear that this will happen in New Hampshire — or anytime in February.

It is reasonably likely that the top two finishers in New Hampshire will be the same as in Iowa: Mr. Sanders and Mr. Buttigieg. And it is possible that one of them will win the state convincingly, or that both of them will far outdistance any runners-up and narrow the race to a small number of options.

But it is also entirely possible that New Hampshire will echo Iowa in another way, by producing such a divided result that it fails to bring the race into sharp focus. In Iowa, five candidates finished in the double digits and the top two each earned barely a quarter of the popular vote. That was hardly an emphatic outcome, and it remains to be seen whether New Hampshire voters will be more decisive.

Of course, the lack of an overwhelming preference is also a kind of preference — one that would reflect voters’ dissatisfaction with the longtime national front-runner, Mr. Biden, and uncertainty about their remaining options. For Democratic voters uncomfortable with Mr. Sanders, even a strong second-place finish for one of the other candidates could have an outsize national impact, if it signals to more moderate voters that someone else is their strongest remaining option.

Even then, there about 60 billion reasons that the race might remain in turmoil for a good while yet. If the early states are supposed to bring order to the race, it might be difficult for them to do that when Michael R. Bloomberg is bypassing them entirely with a self-funded campaign trained on Super Tuesday.

For months, Mr. Biden’s campaign has sought to tamp down expectations about his prospects in New Hampshire, arguing that rivals like Mr. Sanders and Ms. Warren have dramatic home-field advantages, given their status as neighboring-state Democrats.

But now, fresh off a disastrous fourth-place finish in Iowa, Mr. Biden is confronting the possibility of a fourth- or even fifth-place result in New Hampshire.

Despite a slate of prominent endorsements and widespread name recognition, there is the chance that Mr. Biden places behind relative newcomers from the Midwest, Mr. Buttigieg and Ms. Klobuchar.

Such a result would destroy the Biden camp’s efforts to claim the mantle as the moderate standard-bearer in the Democratic Party, threaten his fund-raising and make it difficult to generate enthusiasm headed into the next contest, Nevada.

Certainly, Mr. Biden could surprise here. And his campaign has already made its posture clear: Whatever the New Hampshire result, Mr. Biden is committed to testing his theory that he will do best in later-voting, more diverse states like South Carolina.

The question is what the state of his money and momentum will be coming out of New Hampshire on Tuesday.

Ms. Warren had, not so long ago, dreamed of winning the New Hampshire primary and vaulting herself toward Super Tuesday with serious momentum.

No longer, at least if polls are to be believed.

The Massachusetts senator appears instead to be engaged in a three-way fight for third place with Mr. Biden and Ms. Klobuchar.

Ms. Warren, who finished third in Iowa behind Mr. Buttigieg and Mr. Sanders, the same two men she trails in New Hampshire, has spent the week trying to float above the intensifying fray and projecting strength beyond the early states. “There are 55 more states and territories after this,” she said in Concord on Sunday. “It looks like it is going to be a long battle to the nomination. We have already built out offices and have on the ground troops in 30 states.”

She may have offices and troops, but Ms. Warren also needs money and political momentum, and a weak showing in New Hampshire could rob her of both.

Mr. Sanders, the independent senator from Vermont, is seeking the pole position in the Democratic primary race, after a strong finish in the flawed Iowa caucuses.

But recent polling shows him in a tight race in New Hampshire with Mr. Buttigieg, who also did very well in Iowa.

Anything short of a victory on Tuesday would be a significant disappointment for Mr. Sanders, who won the state’s primary in 2016 against Hillary Clinton with 60 percent of the vote. He probably needs a commanding win to propel him into the rest of the early states and Super Tuesday.

His financial advantage should remain: Aides to Mr. Sanders said on Tuesday that he had received 600,000 contributions in the first nine days of February, and topped seven million contributions over all in his 2020 campaign as of Sunday.

That means the Sanders campaign was processing an average of 66,666 contributions per day during that nine-day period. His average donation in January was $18.72.

If his average donation stayed steady in February, Mr. Sanders was raising nearly $1.25 million per day, or $11.2 million over all in nine days.

That donation pace was significantly faster than January, when the Sanders campaign raised $25 million. His campaign said it had received 1.3 million donations in January, a 31-day period, which comes to about 42,000 per day.

Other top campaigns have not released their fund-raising totals for January or February. Mr. said on CBS this week that his campaign was “raising about half a million dollars a day.”

A few weeks before Iowa’s caucuses, Mr. Buttigieg’s campaign was quietly letting it be known that if he didn’t have top-three finishes in Iowa and New Hampshire, he’d end his campaign before heading on to Nevada and South Carolina.

Now, after a virtual tie for first place in Iowa and New Hampshire polls showing him second to Mr. Sanders, the question for Mr. Buttigieg is how far can he go.

At this point, expectations for Mr. Buttigieg, 38, are as high as they’ve been. A top-two finish would cement his status as a leading candidate, thumping Mr. Biden, the establishment choice, twice in nine days. Third or worse, at this point, would be an extreme disappointment.

Mr. Buttigieg’s team knows the road is about to get much tougher. Nevada’s caucuses and South Carolina’s primary are dominated by Latino and black Democrats — groups that have been far less receptive to his message of handing the reins of government to a new generation.

His hope, expressed to reporters, donors and supporters over the last months, is that winning begets winning. He claimed victory in Iowa before any results were posted and turned that into momentum in New Hampshire. A win or a close-enough second place here could send him west with an argument that he’s the best, or perhaps the only, alternative to Mr. Sanders.

Few candidates have personally felt a 48-hour momentum swing quite like Ms. Klobuchar.

With capacity crowds all weekend, more than $3 million raised over the weekend and two polls showing a surge into third place, Ms. Klobuchar carries the confidence, and media scrums, of a candidate on the rise.

Of course, she still finished fifth in Iowa. And her millions raised over the weekend pour into a war chest far smaller than that of the top two candidates.

Her success in New Hampshire will hinge on whether her blunt appeal to moderates, independents and even Trump-regretting conservatives could patch together a coalition broad enough to compete with Mr. Biden, the one-time poll leader who has admitted that he has slipped in the Granite State, and Ms. Warren, who has also seen some precipitous falls in state polling.

For Ms. Klobuchar to have a good night, she’ll need a strong showing in the rural northern parts of the state and along the seacoast.

But while her moderate roots find a home in states like Iowa and New Hampshire, the map gets harder for Ms. Klobuchar in Nevada and South Carolina, and then later on Super Tuesday, with a heavy dose of the West, South and hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of ads from Mr. Bloomberg.

Perhaps no candidate would have to scale as rapidly as Ms. Klobuchar after Tuesday’s primary, should she have a strong showing. But Ms. Klobuchar vowed on Monday to continue onward to Super Tuesday no matter what.

If there’s been one certainty of the Trump era, it is that Democrats vote. A lot.

In 2018, turnout in the midterm elections reached the highest level in a century. Democrats took control of the House of Representatives. A year later, they gloated about their success winning governorships seats in two red states — Kentucky and Louisiana — with help from a historic surge of voters.

But in the first test of their 2020 might, Democrats fell down on the job. The leading campaigns were prepared for as many as 300,000 people to show up for the Iowa caucuses — 60,000 more than the record set in 2008. Instead, just 176,000 showed up, less than 3 percent more than in 2016.

New Hampshire officials predict a very different outcome in their state, where independents can also vote in party primaries. Secretary of State Bill Gardner believes more than 500,000 people will vote in the primary, a turnout of more than 50 percent of the state’s registered voters.

Already worried about their prospects against President Trump, Democrats will be keeping a close eye on those numbers. Anything short of history-making numbers are likely to be seen as a disappointment, one that may send another wave of anxiety through a party already reaching for the smelling salts.

Sydney Ember, Reid J. Epstein, Lisa Lerer and Nick Corasaniti contributed reporting from Manchester, N.H.

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What to Watch For Before the New Hampshire Primary Polls Close

ImageWestlake Legal Group merlin_168770328_072a0f02-2655-409d-9023-d802586f3767-articleLarge What to Watch For Before the New Hampshire Primary Polls Close Yang, Andrew (1975- ) Warren, Elizabeth Trump, Donald J Steyer, Thomas F Sanders, Bernard Republican Party Primaries and Caucuses Presidential Election of 2020 New Hampshire Klobuchar, Amy Democratic Party Buttigieg, Pete (1982- ) Biden, Joseph R Jr

Voting at Broad Street Elementary School in Nashua, N.H., on Tuesday.Credit…Tamir Kalifa for The New York Times

  • The New Hampshire polls started opening widely at 6 a.m. and will start to close at 7 p.m. The secretary of state has said final results could arrive as early as 9:30 p.m.

  • Eight Democratic candidates are mounting competitive campaigns in New Hampshire. They are: Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, former Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Ind., Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusets, former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, the former tech executive Andrew Yang, Representative Tulsi Gabbard and the former hedge fund investor Tom Steyer.

  • There will also be a Republican primary, which President Trump is expected to win handily.

  • Polls show a close race between Mr. Sanders and Mr. Buttigieg, with Ms. Warren and Ms. Klobuchar behind them, and Mr. Biden in the mix. The former vice president in particular could use a strong showing after a fourth-place finish in Iowa.

  • There are 24 delegates up for grabs, a relatively tiny number given that a candidate needs 1,991 delegates to win the party’s presidential nomination. But New Hampshire, the second nominating contest and first primary, can often provide a candidate with momentum before the Nevada caucuses and the South Carolina primary later this month, as well as the Super Tuesday states in early March.

Stay up to date on primaries and caucuses. Subscribe to “On Politics,” and we’ll send you a link to our live coverage.

MANCHESTER, N.H. — The traditional role of the early primary and caucus states is to winnow the field of presidential candidates and bestow national momentum on one or several finalists. It is far from clear that this will happen in New Hampshire — or anytime in February.

It is reasonably likely that the top two finishers in New Hampshire will be the same as in Iowa: Mr. Sanders and Mr. Buttigieg. And it is possible that one of them will win the state convincingly, or that both of them will far outdistance any runners-up and narrow the race to a small number of options.

But it is also entirely possible that New Hampshire will echo Iowa in another way, by producing such a divided result that it fails to bring the race into sharp focus. In Iowa, five candidates finished in the double digits and the top two each earned barely a quarter of the popular vote. That was hardly an emphatic outcome, and it remains to be seen whether New Hampshire voters will be more decisive.

Of course, the lack of an overwhelming preference is also a kind of preference — one that would reflect voters’ dissatisfaction with the longtime national front-runner, Mr. Biden, and uncertainty about their remaining options. For Democratic voters uncomfortable with Mr. Sanders, even a strong second-place finish for one of the other candidates could have an outsize national impact, if it signals to more moderate voters that someone else is their strongest remaining option.

Even then, there about 60 billion reasons that the race might remain in turmoil for a good while yet. If the early states are supposed to bring order to the race, it might be difficult for them to do that when Michael R. Bloomberg is bypassing them entirely with a self-funded campaign trained on Super Tuesday.

For months, Mr. Biden’s campaign has sought to tamp down expectations about his prospects in New Hampshire, arguing that rivals like Mr. Sanders and Ms. Warren have dramatic home-field advantages, given their status as neighboring-state Democrats.

But now, fresh off a disastrous fourth-place finish in Iowa, Mr. Biden is confronting the possibility of a fourth- or even fifth-place result in New Hampshire.

Despite a slate of prominent endorsements and widespread name recognition, there is the chance that Mr. Biden places behind relative newcomers from the Midwest, Mr. Buttigieg and Ms. Klobuchar.

Such a result would destroy the Biden camp’s efforts to claim the mantle as the moderate standard-bearer in the Democratic Party, threaten his fund-raising and make it difficult to generate enthusiasm headed into the next contest, Nevada.

Certainly, Mr. Biden could surprise here. And his campaign has already made its posture clear: Whatever the New Hampshire result, Mr. Biden is committed to testing his theory that he will do best in later-voting, more diverse states like South Carolina.

The question is what the state of his money and momentum will be coming out of New Hampshire on Tuesday.

Ms. Warren had, not so long ago, dreamed of winning the New Hampshire primary and vaulting herself toward Super Tuesday with serious momentum.

No longer, at least if polls are to be believed.

The Massachusetts senator appears instead to be engaged in a three-way fight for third place with Mr. Biden and Ms. Klobuchar.

Ms. Warren, who finished third in Iowa behind Mr. Buttigieg and Mr. Sanders, the same two men she trails in New Hampshire, has spent the week trying to float above the intensifying fray and projecting strength beyond the early states. “There are 55 more states and territories after this,” she said in Concord on Sunday. “It looks like it is going to be a long battle to the nomination. We have already built out offices and have on the ground troops in 30 states.”

She may have offices and troops, but Ms. Warren also needs money and political momentum, and a weak showing in New Hampshire could rob her of both.

Mr. Sanders, the independent senator from Vermont, is seeking the pole position in the Democratic primary race, after a strong finish in the flawed Iowa caucuses.

But recent polling shows him in a tight race in New Hampshire with Mr. Buttigieg, who also did very well in Iowa.

Anything short of a victory on Tuesday would be a significant disappointment for Mr. Sanders, who won the state’s primary in 2016 against Hillary Clinton with 60 percent of the vote. He probably needs a commanding win to propel him into the rest of the early states and Super Tuesday.

His financial advantage should remain: Aides to Mr. Sanders said on Tuesday that he had received 600,000 contributions in the first nine days of February, and topped seven million contributions over all in his 2020 campaign as of Sunday.

That means the Sanders campaign was processing an average of 66,666 contributions per day during that nine-day period. His average donation in January was $18.72.

If his average donation stayed steady in February, Mr. Sanders was raising nearly $1.25 million per day, or $11.2 million over all in nine days.

That donation pace was significantly faster than January, when the Sanders campaign raised $25 million. His campaign said it had received 1.3 million donations in January, a 31-day period, which comes to about 42,000 per day.

Other top campaigns have not released their fund-raising totals for January or February. Mr. said on CBS this week that his campaign was “raising about half a million dollars a day.”

A few weeks before Iowa’s caucuses, Mr. Buttigieg’s campaign was quietly letting it be known that if he didn’t have top-three finishes in Iowa and New Hampshire, he’d end his campaign before heading on to Nevada and South Carolina.

Now, after a virtual tie for first place in Iowa and New Hampshire polls showing him second to Mr. Sanders, the question for Mr. Buttigieg is how far can he go.

At this point, expectations for Mr. Buttigieg, 38, are as high as they’ve been. A top-two finish would cement his status as a leading candidate, thumping Mr. Biden, the establishment choice, twice in nine days. Third or worse, at this point, would be an extreme disappointment.

Mr. Buttigieg’s team knows the road is about to get much tougher. Nevada’s caucuses and South Carolina’s primary are dominated by Latino and black Democrats — groups that have been far less receptive to his message of handing the reins of government to a new generation.

His hope, expressed to reporters, donors and supporters over the last months, is that winning begets winning. He claimed victory in Iowa before any results were posted and turned that into momentum in New Hampshire. A win or a close-enough second place here could send him west with an argument that he’s the best, or perhaps the only, alternative to Mr. Sanders.

Few candidates have personally felt a 48-hour momentum swing quite like Ms. Klobuchar.

With capacity crowds all weekend, more than $3 million raised over the weekend and two polls showing a surge into third place, Ms. Klobuchar carries the confidence, and media scrums, of a candidate on the rise.

Of course, she still finished fifth in Iowa. And her millions raised over the weekend pour into a war chest far smaller than that of the top two candidates.

Her success in New Hampshire will hinge on whether her blunt appeal to moderates, independents and even Trump-regretting conservatives could patch together a coalition broad enough to compete with Mr. Biden, the one-time poll leader who has admitted that he has slipped in the Granite State, and Ms. Warren, who has also seen some precipitous falls in state polling.

For Ms. Klobuchar to have a good night, she’ll need a strong showing in the rural northern parts of the state and along the seacoast.

But while her moderate roots find a home in states like Iowa and New Hampshire, the map gets harder for Ms. Klobuchar in Nevada and South Carolina, and then later on Super Tuesday, with a heavy dose of the West, South and hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of ads from Mr. Bloomberg.

Perhaps no candidate would have to scale as rapidly as Ms. Klobuchar after Tuesday’s primary, should she have a strong showing. But Ms. Klobuchar vowed on Monday to continue onward to Super Tuesday no matter what.

If there’s been one certainty of the Trump era, it is that Democrats vote. A lot.

In 2018, turnout in the midterm elections reached the highest level in a century. Democrats took control of the House of Representatives. A year later, they gloated about their success winning governorships seats in two red states — Kentucky and Louisiana — with help from a historic surge of voters.

But in the first test of their 2020 might, Democrats fell down on the job. The leading campaigns were prepared for as many as 300,000 people to show up for the Iowa caucuses — 60,000 more than the record set in 2008. Instead, just 176,000 showed up, less than 3 percent more than in 2016.

New Hampshire officials predict a very different outcome in their state, where independents can also vote in party primaries. Secretary of State Bill Gardner believes more than 500,000 people will vote in the primary, a turnout of more than 50 percent of the state’s registered voters.

Already worried about their prospects against President Trump, Democrats will be keeping a close eye on those numbers. Anything short of history-making numbers are likely to be seen as a disappointment, one that may send another wave of anxiety through a party already reaching for the smelling salts.

Sydney Ember, Reid J. Epstein, Lisa Lerer and Nick Corasaniti contributed reporting from Manchester, N.H.

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Justice Dept. to Seek Shorter Sentence for Roger Stone, Overruling Its Prosecutors

Westlake Legal Group 11dc-stone-facebookJumbo Justice Dept. to Seek Shorter Sentence for Roger Stone, Overruling Its Prosecutors United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Stone, Roger J Jr Justice Department Barr, William P

WASHINGTON — Senior Justice Department officials intervened to overrule front-line prosecutors and will recommend a more lenient sentencing for Roger J. Stone Jr., convicted last year of impeding investigators in a bid to protect his longtime friend President Trump, a senior department official said Tuesday.

The move is highly unusual and is certain to generate allegations of political interference. It came after federal prosecutors in Washington asked a judge late Monday evening to sentence Mr. Stone to seven to nine years in prison on seven felony convictions for trying to sabotage a congressional investigation that threatened Mr. Trump.

Early on Tuesday, Mr. Trump declared the sentencing recommendation “horrible and very unfair.

“The real crimes were on the other side, as nothing happens to them,” Mr. Trump wrote. “Cannot allow this miscarriage of justice!”

Both the Stone sentencing recommendation and the president’s tweet took officials at Justice Department headquarters by surprise, according to a department official who spoke on condition of anonymity because the Stone case was ongoing.

The recommendation was higher than what the United States attorney’s office had told Justice Department officials it would suggest, according to the official, and the department decided soon after the filing to override the prosecutors’ decision.

The department had not discussed the recommendation with the White House or Mr. Trump, the official said.

“The department finds the recommendation extreme and excessive and disproportionate to Stone’s offenses,” the official said.

The Justice Department was to clarify its position in a court filing later on Tuesday. Mr. Stone’s sentencing by Judge Amy Berman Jackson of the Federal District Court in Washington is scheduled for next week.

Federal prosecutors said in their sentencing memorandum Monday that Mr. Stone, 67, should serve up to nine years because he threatened a witness with bodily harm and interfered with a congressional investigation. They also cited the fact that he violated a judge’s gag orders after he was charged in a federal indictment.

They also said that he had lied under oath and forged documents as investigators sought to understand how the 2016 Trump campaign tried to benefit from stolen Democratic documents.

Defense lawyers argued that Mr. Stone not only never intended to threaten the witness but also created no real obstacle for investigators.

The decision to seek more leniency for Mr. Stone also came less than two weeks after prosecutors backed off on their sentencing recommendation for Michael T. Flynn, Mr. Trump’s former national security adviser who pleaded guilty to lying to investigators in the Russia inquiry. Prosecutors had initially sought up to six months in prison, then said they would not oppose probation instead of prison time.

One of the prosecutors in the Flynn case, Brandon L. Van Grack — who had taken on the case under Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel, and continued to work on it after he left that office to rejoin the Justice Department’s national security division — did not sign the memo in support of probation, though he had signed earlier briefs in the case.

The intervention by senior Justice Department officials in Mr. Stone’s case serves as the first big test for Timothy Shea, who last Monday became the interim head of the United States attorney’s office in Washington, which is overseeing some of the department’s most politically fraught cases.

Mr. Shea, a longtime trusted adviser to Attorney General William P. Barr and former senior counselor in Mr. Barr’s office, now oversees investigations into two former law enforcement officials whom Mr. Trump has long perceived as political enemies: the former F.B.I. director James B. Comey, who is said to be the focus of investigators in an unusual inquiry into years-old leaks, and his former deputy Andrew G. McCabe, who faces allegations that he misled investigators in an administrative inquiry. That case that has languished.

Adam Goldman contributed reporting.

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Justice Dept. to Seek Shorter Sentence for Roger Stone, Overruling Its Prosecutors

Westlake Legal Group 11dc-stone-facebookJumbo Justice Dept. to Seek Shorter Sentence for Roger Stone, Overruling Its Prosecutors United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Stone, Roger J Jr Justice Department Barr, William P

WASHINGTON — The Justice Department will back off its sentencing recommendation for Roger J. Stone Jr., President Trump’s former campaign adviser and longtime friend, a senior department official said Tuesday, with senior department officials intervening to overrule front-line prosecutors who tried the case.

The move is highly unusual and is certain to generate allegations of political interference. It came after federal prosecutors in Washington asked a judge late Monday evening to sentence Mr. Stone to seven to nine years in prison on seven felony convictions for trying to sabotage a congressional investigation that threatened Mr. Trump. Early on Tuesday, Mr. Trump declared the sentencing recommendation “horrible and very unfair.

“The real crimes were on the other side, as nothing happens to them,” Mr. Trump wrote. “Cannot allow this miscarriage of justice!”

Both the sentencing recommendation and the president’s tweet took officials at Justice Department headquarters by surprise, according to a department official who spoke on condition of anonymity because the Stone case was ongoing.

The recommendation was higher than what the United States attorney’s office had told Justice Department officials it would suggest, according to the official, and the department decided soon after the filing to override the prosecutors’ decision.

The department had not discussed the recommendation with the White House or Mr. Trump, the official said.

“The department finds the recommendation extreme and excessive and disproportionate to Stone’s offenses,” the official said.

The Justice Department was to clarify its position in a court filing later on Tuesday.

Federal prosecutors said in their sentencing memorandum Monday that Mr. Stone, 67, should serve up to nine years because he threatened a witness with bodily harm and interfered with a congressional investigation. They also cited the fact that he violated a judge’s gag orders after he was charged in a federal indictment.

They also said that he had lied under oath and forged documents as investigators sought to understand how the 2016 Trump campaign tried to benefit from stolen Democratic documents.

Defense lawyers argued that Mr. Stone not only never intended to threaten the witness but also created no real obstacle for investigators.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

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Oh, Does Another State Also Vote Early? New Hampshire Isn’t Listening

Westlake Legal Group 11Iowa-NH3-facebookJumbo Oh, Does Another State Also Vote Early? New Hampshire Isn’t Listening Voting and Voters United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J States (US) Sanders, Bernard Primaries and Caucuses Presidential Election of 2020 New Hampshire Klobuchar, Amy Iowa Democratic Party Buttigieg, Pete (1982- ) Biden, Joseph R Jr

DERRY, N.H. — Throughout the nearly half century-long presidential rivalry between Iowa and New Hampshire, sometimes a state has to dig deep to make its case for why its contest is in fact superior.

Not this year.

As New Hampshire Democrats head to the polls Tuesday, they are divided over their candidates, the direction of their party and how to defeat President Trump. But there’s at least one core belief that unites them: That other first-in-the-nation contest really messed this one up.

“The very first real primary is going to be New Hampshire and rightfully so,” Howard Wooldridge said as he waited with a group of people hoping to get into a packed town hall event with former Mayor Pete Buttigieg. That other early state? “Nobody is going to get anything out of it.”

Stay up to date on primaries and caucuses. Subscribe to “On Politics,” and we’ll send you a link to our live coverage.

New Hampshire voters are known for their steely New England independence, an eagerness to buck whatever those Midwesterners do with their votes.

The first-in-the nation primary is the place that made Bill Clinton the “comeback kid” after a devastating defeat in the 1992 Iowa caucuses. Sixteen years later, Granite State voters helped his wife, Hillary, eke out a surprise victory against Barack Obama, reviving her campaign after being bested by the Illinois senator in Iowa. In 2016, the New Hampshire voters reversed course yet again, delivering a 22-point victory to Senator Bernie Sanders over Mrs. Clinton.

Yet, New Hampshire voters have never seen Iowa caucuses quite like these. How does a contrary New England Democrat stick it to Iowa, when there’s no one to stick it to?

The Iowa Democratic Party released results indicating that Mr. Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Ind., was the winner after it updated data from 55 precincts. But errors in the result tabulations have led several news organizations, including The New York Times, to refrain from calling the race. Mr. Sanders, who won the popular vote in the state, and Mr. Buttigieg are calling for a partial recanvass of some precincts.

In the midst of the mess, the two men swaggered across New Hampshire talking about an Iowa win, each telling voters he has emerged as a clear front-runner from the contest.

Senator Amy Klobuchar’s Iowa-bashing was subtle — or, perhaps, more politic — than that of New Hampshire voters themselves.

“You’re a state that’s a primary, so people can vote,” Ms. Klobuchar, who is from Minnesota, told a laughing crowd in Keene on Monday. “You know how to count votes.”

As she sat in a concert hall, waiting for Senator Elizabeth Warren to address voters in Derry, Mary Bishop, 71, said she was totally stuck on picking a candidate. But she was certain that the mess in Iowa would play no role in her decision making.

“Good lord, no,” she said. “They’re in another country. You need a passport to go from Iowa to New Hampshire.”

The fact that both states would be voting in the same presidential election — the very reason a Granite Stater would pay attention to Iowa in the first place — did not seem to interfere with the trash talk.

Ms. Bishop’s friend Sue Dickinson agreed, questioning how you could trust any results out of such a chaotic process. Yet, she also wondered whether she might just want to give Mr. Buttigieg — a candidate she previously dismissed as too inexperienced — a second look.

“When you get to the middle of the country, and that just might be my bias, but they seem very set in their ways. More traditional,” Ms. Dickinson said. “It surprised me that they’d consider him.”

In interviews with dozens of voters across the Granite State, it’s clear that Iowa is on their minds, even if they don’t like to admit that a state many are eager to disparage might influence their decision making.

The New Hampshire primary electorate tends to be a bit less ideologically liberal in Democratic races: More than 40 percent of New Hampshire voters are independent (officially called undeclared) — a significantly greater share than either party can claim — and independents are allowed to participate in either primary. With Mr. Trump facing little opposition, many are expected to flock to the more competitive Democratic primary race.

Dante J. Scala, professor of political science at the University of New Hampshire, says the idea of New Hampshire as a fiercely countervailing force is more political lore than fact, at least when it comes to Democratic primaries. In the 2000 and 2004 cycles, the state echoed the choices of Iowans, picking Al Gore and John Kerry.

One similarity: Like Iowans, New Hampshire voters decide late in the process. A month ago, polling showed that less than one-third of registered Democratic primary voters had “definitely” settled on a candidate.

The late-breaking nature of the electorate gives events in the final week before voting — like the Iowa caucuses or Friday night’s debate — significant influence to shift the race.

Michael Arnow, 66, said he had been considering Ms. Klobuchar but was leaning toward Mr. Buttigieg after seeing how well he performed amid the “craziness” of Iowa. As he waited to get into a packed town hall meeting with the former mayor on Thursday afternoon, he worried that Mr. Sanders could not defeat Mr. Trump — his main criterion for assessing the field.

“I don’t want to waste a vote for a politician that may not ultimately get to that point,” Mr. Arnow said. “I’m jumping on the bandwagon, admittedly.”

Still considered the favorite in the state, Mr. Sanders has been holding steady in polling. But recent surveys show Mr. Buttigieg ticking up, surging to a virtual tie with the Vermont senator early last week, and Ms. Klobuchar gaining steam. Former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., meanwhile, has dropped precipitously.

“Biden’s collapse here, Buttigieg’s rise has to do with Iowa,” said Mr. Scala, the author of a book on the history of the New Hampshire primary. “The Iowa thing really kind of threw everyone here into sixes and sevens, and people started shopping.”

That new reality visibly frustrates the famously voluble former vice president. At campaign events, he stresses that the Iowa results are unrepresentative of his ability to win bigger battleground states like Pennsylvania and Michigan.

“You ever been to a caucus?” he shot back at a student who asked Mr. Biden to explain what his disastrous finish in Iowa meant for his national prospects. “No, you haven’t. You’re a lying dog-faced pony soldier.”

Not all New Hampshire voters have the patience to wait for those later contests.

After listening to Mr. Buttigieg address a veterans hall in Derry, Dave Agennessey, 73, said he was torn between Mr. Biden and the former mayor. But after the caucuses, he’s leaning toward Mr. Buttigieg — despite, well, Iowa.

“The caucus system itself is flawed. It’s wrong,” said Mr. Agennessey, a semiretired Realtor. “If people do well, the winner will come out of New Hampshire.”

Mr. Scala says that New Hampshire voters might want to be a little more careful in their scathing reviews of their fellow early voters.

The caucus crisis has left many party leaders eager to restructure the early-voting process, with officials in places like Michigan and Illinois already salivating at an opportunity to jump ahead in the lineup.

“The thing is, once you open the box, where do the reforms end?” he said. “We’ve been joined at the hip with Iowa for so long in the process people are going to say it’s got to be a twofer. You’ve got to take out Iowa and New Hampshire.”

Nick Corasaniti contributed reporting from Nashua and Katie Glueck from Hampton, N.H.

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Mitt Romney Is a ‘Judas’ to Many Republicans. But Not in Utah.

Westlake Legal Group merlin_168184737_3502fd30-4f85-44a9-be2f-cb6b852a1aa3-facebookJumbo Mitt Romney Is a ‘Judas’ to Many Republicans. But Not in Utah. Voting and Voters utah Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry State Legislatures Romney, Mitt Republican Party Elections, Senate Conservatism (US Politics)

SALT LAKE CITY — Phil Lyman wanted to do something swift and stern.

Within hours of Senator Mitt Romney’s vote to remove President Trump from office on Wednesday, Mr. Lyman, a freshman state representative from southern Utah who keeps an autographed “Make America Great Again” hat in a plexiglass case in his office, was at work drafting a resolution to censure the senator.

“I mean, I respect a guy that will stand up for his opinion, but it’s not without some repercussions,” Mr. Lyman said. “His action warrants an additional action on the part of the State Legislature.”

But just as swiftly came the pushback to Mr. Lyman from Utah’s Republican leadership.

“Censuring Senator Romney for voting his conscience is a tricky place to be,” the speaker of the state House, Brad Wilson, said in an interview.

The governor, Gary Herbert, told The Salt Lake Tribune, “I think that would be just a mistake to go down that road.”

The president of the State Senate, J. Stuart Adams, pleaded for reconciliation. “What I don’t want to do is move into the negative rhetoric I think is coming from Washington, D.C.,” he said at a news conference on Friday.

Barely eight years ago, Mr. Romney was the Republican nominee for president and putative leader of the party. Today, the way many Republicans accept and even encourage the attacks on him from Mr. Trump, who last week accused him of using “religion as a crutch” to justify the impeachment vote, vividly illustrates the turn the party has taken.

Utah Republicans never quite fell for Mr. Trump as hard as the rest of their party did. The state’s political sensibilities, heavily influenced by its Mormon culture, are more agree-to-disagree than salt-the-earth. The president’s coarse language, belittling nicknames and aversion to humility help explain why his approval ratings over all in Utah have been below 50 percent for most of the last three years.

And while they support Mr. Trump as their president — very few Republicans here say they would have voted to convict him as Mr. Romney did — they have refused to join the pile-on they see happening back east on Fox News sets and in social media feeds of the president’s followers, where their junior senator is being vilified as a “coward” and “Judas” who should be expelled from the Republican Party.

Not only does Mr. Lyman’s censure resolution appear to be dead on arrival, but the leader of the State Senate, Mr. Adams, also said last week that he would rather not vote on or debate any action related to Mr. Romney at all. He stressed that anything his chamber took up should be “positive” — a word he used repeatedly as he spoke to reporters at the State Capitol on Friday. He said he preferred something like a unanimously agreed-to statement that affirmed Mr. Trump’s strengths as president.

“It may feel right — you want to swing at someone — but I think it’s better off to do what’s right,” Mr. Adams said in an interview. Though he disagreed with how Mr. Romney voted, he added, “I have respect for what he did.”

Utah is one of the rare places where the few Romney-style Republicans who remain are relatively safe from a challenge from their right, where speaking out against the president can be an act to admire, not an apostasy.

With the most vitriolic condemnation of Mr. Romney coming from outside Utah, there has been something of a rallying effect around the senator.

“Not everyone hates Romney,” read the headline on an opinion article in The Tribune this weekend. “In spite of the loud voices who are busy calling him names, there are many of us out here who are cheering for him,” wrote the author, Holly Richardson, a former Republican legislator.

Salt Lake City’s other major paper, The Deseret News, which is owned by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, published an editorial arguing against a censure of the senator and has run numerous other supportive pieces, including one declaring that his vote was “what a Christian conscience demands.”

Chris Karpowitz, a professor of political science at Brigham Young University, said the disputes between Mr. Romney and Mr. Trump illustrated two different visions about what it means to be a Republican.

“Sometimes they line up on policy,” Dr. Karpowitz added. “But in terms of style and rhetoric and commitment to what in previous years were thought of as core values, they couldn’t be more different.”

No state as heavily Republican has been so chilly to the president. Though active registered Republicans outnumber Democrats in Utah by more than three to one, Mr. Trump won only 45 percent of the vote in Utah in 2016. Hillary Clinton and Evan McMullin, a former intelligence officer who ran as a third-party candidate, split up the rest of the vote.

Last week, national conservative activists promoted a “Recall Romney” effort online and shared stories about a proposal circulating in the legislature that aimed to give voters the ability to recall their United States senators.

Aimee Winder Newton, a Republican candidate for governor, said that such a move would have worrisome repercussions. “I get that many state legislators are disappointed,” she wrote on Twitter. “But creating a culture of censuring could come back their way.”

In reality, the recall bill was drafted months ago and has little support in Salt Lake City. Its sponsor has said that it has nothing to do with Mr. Romney or impeachment, and is instead meant to bolster the rights of Utahans to hold all senators accountable.

Lawmakers and constitutional experts said the measure would probably not survive a court challenge anyway.

“My strong impression,” said Edward Foley, the director of election law at Ohio State University, “is that this kind of recall would be clearly unconstitutional. After all, the Constitution itself specifies six-year terms for senators, and has no mechanism — other than expulsion by the Senate itself — for a state to end a U.S. senator’s service before the six years are up.”

Mr. Romney is by no means infallible among Utahans. And Mr. Trump is more popular here now than he was four years ago, thanks to a strong economy and his dedication to filling the courts with conservative judges.

Though Mr. Romney is often associated with Utah because of his role in leading Salt Lake City’s effort to prepare for the 2002 Winter Olympics, he had spent most of his life living elsewhere before deciding to run for Senate in 2018 — a liability in a state where many families can trace their lineage back to the mid-19th century, when Mormons arrived in the Salt Lake Valley. His campaign ran into trouble early on with activist Republicans when he lost to a little-known legislator at the state convention, which forced a primary he later won. In the general election he won with almost 63 percent of the vote statewide.

But the objections of grass-roots conservatives who have outsize influence in state conventions had little to do with Mr. Romney’s history of feuding with Mr. Trump. Instead, they bristled at an attempt by Mr. Romney to gather enough signatures to circumvent the convention.

Mr. Romney has worked diligently to cultivate relationships with Republicans in Salt Lake City. After he left Washington the day of his vote on the president, one of his first stops was at the State Capitol to meet Republican lawmakers to explain himself. He spoke at two different meetings, one with House members and another with the Senate leadership.

He delivered a version of the speech he gave on the Senate floor last Wednesday in which he said his oath to God and faith guided him toward “the most difficult decision I have ever faced.” Some legislators questioned his motives, asking why they should believe that he wasn’t just trying to get even with the president. Others worried about Utah suddenly finding itself in the president’s cross hairs and whether it would damage its relationship with the federal government, which controls about two-thirds of the state’s land.

“For a lot of us,” said Speaker Wilson, “the question was: ‘What does this decision mean for your effectiveness as our senator?”

The meeting was intended primarily for legislative leaders, but Mr. Lyman, the author of the censure resolution, was invited as well. In an interview, he said that Mr. Romney had earned his respect for showing up, but not for his vote.

He had only a few seconds to address Mr. Romney as the senator was leaving and used the opportunity to defend Mr. Trump for reducing the size of protected federal land in Utah so it could be used for commercial purposes.

“There’s a lot of talk in politics,” Mr. Lyman recalled telling the senator. “And President Trump actually came out here and did something.”

But even Mr. Lyman’s disappointment with Mr. Romney has its limits. Next to the bookcase in his office at the Capitol where he has his autographed MAGA hat stands another political memento he is proud of: a life-size cutout of Mr. Romney.

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