Late call on New Hampshire primary prompts press gaffes

An early edition of The Independent this morning appeared to mistakenly call the New Hampshire Primary for Democrat presidential candidate Barack Obama.

Obama was well ahead in opinion polls last night and had been expected to beat Hillary Clinton in the primary. In factClinton narrowly beat Obama by 39 per cent to 36 per cent.

An early edition of the Independent today carried a photo of Obama with the headline Iowa…New Hampshire…America – Barack Obama’s Incredible Journey.”

The words “Iowa…New Hampshire…America were taken out from later editions of the Independent.

The result of the New Hampshire primary caused problems across the UK national press because it was not called until around 4am – when the UK nationals had nearly completed their print runs.

The Daily Telegraph also go the story wrong in a basement slot on the front page when it carried the headline: “Hillary to sack aides as she faces defeat”. It reported that Clinton had “last night braced herself for a big loss in the New Hampshire primary.”

The Guardian’s first edition reported: “Clinton moves to plan B – Strategists may be sacked, focus now on winning the big states.”

Later in the print run, the Guardian’s 3am edition used exit polls to report that “Hillary Clinton appeared to be heading for a comeback in the New Hampshire primary last night.”

A later edition of The Times also caught up and reported on its splash: “Clinton fightback”, revealing in the story that “Hillary Clinton appeared last night to have defied the polls.”

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