This should have been up yesterday, but the various technical breakdowns that I was having were fairly epic. Anyway: you probably remember Ovide Lamontagne as being a NH Senate Republican primary candidate in 2010… and for graciously conceding the race when he lost the primary, which may have well saved the GOP that seat in the general election. At any rate, he’s currently the only Republican candidate in the NH-GOV primary, and we spoke yesterday about the race and his plans for the campaign.
Ovide’s campaign site is here. Just as a reminder: January’s NH Presidential primary is distinct from the state’s other primaries, which will all take place in September of 2012. Also a reminder: New Hampshire elects governors to two-year terms (current Democratic governor John Lynch has… declined… to run for re-election).
This morning, at the annual Bedford GOP breakfast at the Manchester Country Club, Lamontagne, with his wife, Bettie, at his side, announced his intent to once again run for governor in front of hundreds of local Republicans, including [Senator Kelly] Ayotte.
“I certainly got to know Ovide, we had many debates during our primary, and I have respect for him and think he’ll be a strong candidate for governor,” said Ayotte. “With Gov. (John) Lynch retiring, this is an opportunity to go forward and preserve the New Hampshire advantage. Ovide is a lifelong resident of this state. He cares deeply about the people of New Hampshire.”
He has conceded the primary, will not seek a recount, and has endorsed Kelly Ayotte (video here). Ayotte has accepted the concession with equal grace and politeness, calling Lamontagne a gentleman and a principled conservative (H/T: Hot Air). From now on, it’s all about defeating Paul Hodes in the general election.
Would that more politicians acted this properly when they lose a primary. Michael Castle and Lisa Murkowski, I’m looking at you.
PS: Jeanne Shaheen will be up for re-election in four years. This is not that far off in time, and I hope that NH conservatives will remember this dignified end to the 2010 campaign, if it turns out to be relevant to the one in 2014…
With 85% of the vote in Kelly Ayotte is about 900 votes ahead of Ovide Lamontagne, after an evening where she was behind in the vote. Which is easily close enough for a recount, no matter who wins – and, honestly, this is one time where it really is still up in the air. My personal inclination would be to counsel whoever ends up in second to not push a recount*; it’s six weeks before the election and Paul Hodes (D CAND, NH-SEN) is desperate to delay the time before people start getting reminded that he supported cap-and-trade and Obamacare.
Amusingly, this race was considered ‘contentious’ before the GOP DE-SEN primary abruptly redefined that adjective. I would hope that both campaigns take this as being, as they say, a moment of clarity…
*Hey, both candidates were hardly shy about tapping into national conservative energy, time, and money; they can also handle getting a little national conservative advice.