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Swap Meet



  Former Gov. Buddy Roemer's increasingly quixotic quest for the GOP presidential nomination took another twist in the latter days of New Hampshire primary campaigning. The Roemer campaign held a "Yankee swap" for supporters at his Manchester campaign headquarters Dec. 9, one day before the primary.

  The swap — a gift exchange also known as a "white elephant party" — required attendees to bring wrapped presents that had been made in America. As a symbol of his vow to accept only small-money contributions, Roemer capped the cost of the gifts at $15.

  Roemer, who moved to New Hampshire months ago to campaign full time, had been touting a Dec. 29 poll that showed him tied for third in the state with Texas Gov. Rick Perry and former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Penn. It was not to be; Roemer placed seventh in the race with 0.4 percent of the vote. Just above him, at sixth with 0.7 percent, was Perry, who hadn't bothered to campaign in the state, instead pinning his hopes on the Jan. 21 South Carolina primary.

  Gov. Bobby Jindal continues to cheerlead for Perry, even recording robo-calls targeted to South Carolina voters touting Perry as a "consistent conservative." — Kevin Allman

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