Possibly you may remember the Northern Pass story from last year: in a nutshell, Maggie Hassan’s campaign took forty-five thousand in illegally same-day campaign contributions from three Big Labor unions (SEIU, UFCW, and IBEW). This was generally considered to be at least suspicious, as all three unions want New Hampshire’s proposed Northern Pass transmission line project to go through, while radical environmentalists of course instead want people in New Hampshire to be cold, hungry, and in the dark. Was it a bribe? Nobody knows! Was it illegal? Well…
After the state Republican Party filed a complaint, Attorney General Joe Foster was tasked with deciding whether the $45,000 in union donations to Hassan’s campaign were legal. He decided that a person becomes a candidate at midnight on the day he or she announces. Under that rather creative interpretation, the two $10,000 donations were legal, but the $25,000 contribution was not.
Further complicating the story, the PACs had not registered in New Hampshire, making their donations felonies. Foster ordered the PACs to register, but did not punish them for the violations, which was very lenient of him.
…poll here*. Governor Maggie Hassan is still popular in New Hampshire – although that trendline is interesting – but she’s not going to beat an incumbent with numbers like that, and that is the way of it. If the Democrats lose her as a candidate then Senator Kelly Ayotte will have a smooth glide path for re-election. Heck, even if the Democrats keep Gov. Hassan as a candidate then with those numbers Senator Ayotte will still have a smooth glide path for re-election. Continue reading NBC/Marist: Kelly Ayotte at 50% in New Hampshire Senate race.
If you’re wondering why the Left is going ballistic over current proposed legislation by Senators Kelly Ayotte (R, NH) and Cory Gardner (R, CO) that would effectively make oral contraceptives an over-the-counter medicine, why, here you go: “Planned Parenthood alone makes around $1.2 billion each year from contraceptive services.” It really does just come down to this: money. There’s a lot of money on the table. You tell an industry that it’s about to lose that huge a chunk of its revenue stream, and it’s going to react. You almost can’t even blame them for it: effective monopolies always look different from the inside. In fact, they may not even consider themselves to have an effective monopoly*, insane as that sounds.
Looks like a good hire. Ben Sparks was campaign manager for now-Senator Dan Sullivan of Alaska and communications manager for the Wisconsin GOP during Scott Walker’s 2012 recall election. Admittedly, he was also the comms guy for Wisconsin in Mitt Romney’s 2012 bid, but it’s always about what you’ve done lately. Flipping a Senate seat always looks good on the resume; and Sen. Ayotte’s a good fit here. She’s an incumbent, not really vulnerable but also not yet a lock; and the Democrats are going to spend resources on toppling her no matter what happens. Nice to see that she’s not taking any chances.
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.
Excuse me: more on Rep. Carol Shea-Porter (D, NH). This is some quick little footage of NH Senate candidate Kelly Ayotte (R) having a good laugh at Shea-Porter’s confused gracelessness:
Couple that with this earlier report on the encounter and one is left with the impression that the tasered marmoset Member of Congress is just a little bit lost, these days. Being in Congress is apparently a lot less fun than she thought it’d be (I assume that’s one reason why she ducked meeting with her constituents for so long).