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Five Lessons from the New Hampshire Primary

COMMENTARY | Now that Mitt Romney has won the New Hampshire primary and the campaign has moved south in the week before the South Carolina vote, it's time for Granite State residents to reflect upon the events and learn what we may. Here are five things the Primary has taught us.

Ron Paul is surging

Strong showings in Iowa and New Hampshire show Paul is gaining ground. He won 21 percent in Iowa, according to IowaCaucus.com, and 23 percent in New Hampshire, according to CNN. He's trending up, earning between three and four times as many votes as he did in 2008, according to CNN's 2008 Iowa and New Hampshire results data.

Mitt Romney can use deceptive speeches

Romney's victory speech was laden with exaggeration, misdirection and some outright falsehoods. An analysis in the Huffington Post mentions inaccuracies in Romney's claims about unemployment and demonstrates the candidate glosses over Obamacare's roots in Romney's own policies from Massachusetts.

Santorum's message fails among moderates

Rick Santorum is known for his extremist views, particularly about marriage equality and homosexuality. He's described homosexuality with the bizarre claim it leads to "man on dog" sex acts in an AP interview. While his messages of bigotry and discrimination may play well among ultra-conservatives they fall flat when presented to moderates.

John Sununu is wacky on primary night

John Sununu offered plenty of impassioned commentary to the media. A great highlight reel of his best moments is available from BuzzFeed on YouTube, including him ranting about "socialist attacks" against Romney. Objective, eloquent commentary seemed out of reach for Sununu the moment the cameras turned to him.

Primary results can shuffle the deck

Santorum took second place in Iowa, missing the win by just eight votes. In New Hampshire he barely registered. Iowa's results just can't be used as the sole predictor of the nomination race.