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Obama wins in earliest vote

The Associated Press

Barack Obama came up a big winner in the presidential race in Dixville Notch and Hart's Location, N.H., where tradition of having the first Election Day ballots tallied lives on.

Democrat Obama defeated Republican John McCain by a count of 15 to 6 in Dixville Notch, where a loud whoop accompanied the announcement. The town of Hart's Location reported 17 votes for Obama, 10 for McCain and two for write-in Ron Paul. Independent Ralph Nader was on both towns' ballots but got no votes.

The first Dixville Notch voter, following tradition established in 1948, was picked ahead of the midnight voting and the rest of the town's 21 registered voters followed suit in Tuesday's first minutes.

Town Clerk Rick Erwin said the northern New Hampshire town is proud of its tradition, but added that the most important thing is that the turnout represents a 100 percent vote.

President Bush won the votes in Dixville Notch and Hart's Location in 2004 on the way to his re-election.