Free State Project Forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Pages: [1] 2 3   Go Down

Author Topic: Benson can't exactly count on Concord's GOP  (Read 9885 times)

rhull

  • FSP Participant
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 68
Benson can't exactly count on Concord's GOP
« on: September 19, 2004, 01:19:08 pm »

http://www.concordmonitor.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20040919/REPOSITORY/409190320/1017


Gov. Craig Benson has never tried to hide his distaste for Concord's insider political culture. The man who calls himself a loose cannon and a destroyer of bridges has often chafed under the staid customs of the State House. Now it seems that the city where Benson has hung his hat for the past two years is not exactly enamored of him either.

Though Benson won last week's Republican primary by a three-to-one margin statewide, he won the support of fewer than half of the Concord Republicans who showed up at the polls. Of the 2,017 Republicans who voted in the city, just 854 or 42 percent checked Benson's name. One hundred and forty-four people who grabbed Republican ballots decided to write in the name of John Lynch, the eventual Democratic nominee.

By comparison, Lynch pulled the support of 82 percent of Concord Democrats. In total, Lynch earned more than three times as many Concord votes as Benson.

Back for more

One of the more surprising results of Tuesday's primary was the reemergence of Mark Fernald. Fernald, the Democratic nominee for governor two years ago, benefited from a last-minute write-in effort that landed him on the general election ballot for the District 11 state Senate seat.

Fernald said he hadn't planned on running for the seat, which he has won twice before. But he felt compelled to do it after he sensed that Peter Bragdon, a self-described conservative from Milford, seemed poised to knock off incumbent Andrew Peterson in the Republican primary. Fernald sent an e-mail to friends and supporters over the weekend urging them to write his name on their Democratic ballots, since no other Democrat had signed up to run in the district.

"He's a Benson ally," Fernald said of Bragdon, who ended up winning the GOP primary. "He's bought the whole Benson package."

Fernald, who proposed replacing the statewide property tax with an income tax in his 2002 campaign, was soundly defeated by Benson in that race. He said he won't be talking about the income tax this time not because he thinks it's a sure loser, but because both Benson and Lynch have pledged to veto one. And even though he's running for state Senate this time, not the governor's office, Fernald still has his eye on Benson.

"The real issue in this race is Benson," he said. "To know Craig Benson is not to love him. I said that when I was running against him. Now that we've had two years of him, people know what I'm talking about."

Crossing the line

Benson got the endorsement of the Professional Firefighters of New Hampshire last week, while Lynch picked up the support of the Association of Retired State Troopers. Interestingly, the president of each group crossed party lines to endorse their chosen candidate.

David Lang, president of the firefighters union, is a Democrat and die-hard supporter of Sen. John Kerry in the presidential race. He was also a delegate to the Democratic National Convention in July. But he praised Benson for "standing by" the state's firefighters. He said he liked Benson's proposal for handing out federal homeland security grants based on threat rather than population. It's something he wishes Bush understand better, Lang said.

Roland Lamy Sr., president of the retired troopers group, said he, like most of his colleagues, is a Republican. So why did they unanimously support Lynch?

"We feel betrayed by Craig Benson," he said. "He has made gestures to take money from our pension fund. We're not looking for anything special; we just want what was promised to us."

Killington gets serious

Maybe it's not a joke after all. The town of Killington, which has pledged to secede from Vermont and establish itself in New Hampshire, has retained one of Concord's biggest lobbying firms to represent it in the coming legislative session. The Dupont group, headed by former Senate president Ed Dupont, is acting as the town's "eyes, ears and legs on the ground in New Hampshire," according to a press release last week. Dupont is helping the town free of charge.

Out with a bang

If you stayed a little later than usual at the Barley House late Monday night, you might have noticed an odd band of brothers gathering out in front of the State House. One after another, we recognized friends in the gloom: Sen. Bob Boyce of Alton. Rep. Elbert Bicknell of Deerfield. Rep. Richard "Stretch" Kennedy of Hopkinton. And the snowy-bearded David Welch, chairman of the House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee, clad head-to-toe in Revolutionary War garb and holding a rifle.

If you haven't guessed already, it was Gun Owners of New Hampshire waiting for the stroke of midnight so they could mark the expiration of the assault weapons ban.

"We're celebrating the end of the bullsh--," Kennedy said.

Dial a vote

Local Democrats and the state GOP continue to squabble over a two-year-old phone jamming scheme that spurred a federal investigation and, so far, two convictions.

Quick recap: On Election Day 2002, a few Democratic get-out-the-vote phone banks were jammed with repeated hang-up calls for more than a hour. After a year-long investigation, the feds fingered former party director Chuck McGee and Virginia political consultant Allen Raymond for conspiring to block the phones. (Both men pleaded guilty, and the investigation is continuing.) Meanwhile, the state Democratic party filed a lawsuit against McGee, Raymond and the New Hampshire GOP.

Last week, so the Dems say, the Republicans asked the court to delay the case until after the election. Kathy Sullivan, chairwoman of the state Democratic party, isn't happy.

"First they jammed our phone lines in 2002, then they lied about it," she said in a written release. "Now, they are trying to stop the public from finding out who else was involved."

But Republican Party chairwoman Jayne Millerick had a slightly different story. She said the GOP asked the court to wait on the case so as not to interfere with the federal investigation, calling the lawsuit "frivolous."

"It's not something that should be politicized, it's not something that should be used as a game by the Democrats," she said.

Not so free

It seems New Hampshire, the destination for the Free State Project, may not be the promised land for Libertarians after all. For the first time since 1972, November's presidential ballot won't be graced with a Libertarian candidate's name.

Michael Badnarik, the Libertarians' pick for the White House, made it on every other ballot in the nation (although the campaign is fending off a court challenge in Okalahoma), but the New Hampshire party had a tough time collecting the necessary 1,500 signatures from each congressional district.

Secretary of State Bill Gardnersaid the local Libs got just 929 signatures in the First District and 1,263 in the Second. Even the Constitution Party came closer, getting around 2,900 people to sign their petition in both districts.

The third man

The state Ballot Law Commission will hear arguments on Friday on whether Ralph Nader should get a spot on New Hampshire's presidential ballot. Nader supporters say they've collected more than enough signatures to take them into the November election. But state Democrats say they've discovered dozens of signatures that are either forged or collected duplicitously.

Aaron Rizzio, spokesman for Nader in New Hampshire, said the campaign has a team of lawyers, most of them working for free, that responds to these kinds of challenges.

"I have faith in the overall process and the effort our volunteers and the town clerks who certified those signatures," Rizzio said. "Ultimately the Democrats are challenging the town clerks'integrity, not our integrity."

Secretary of State Gardner said there's never been a successful challenge of a candidate's legitimacy once the certified petitions have been submitted and counted by the secretary of state.

Margaritas, anyone?

Spotted at the Jimmy Buffettconcert at Fenway Park last Sunday: Fred Bramante, chairman of the state Board of Education. Our source says Bramante, who owns the Daddy's Junky Music stores, was enjoying himself dancing on the stadium's roof deck.

Switcheroo

Paul Stokes, president of the state employees' union, wouldn't say whom he voted for in last week's gubernatorial primary. But he did mention he'd briefly severed ties with the Democratic Party to take a Republican ballot and vote against the incumbent.

International man

U.S. Sen. John E. Sununu was picked by President Bush last week to serve as a congressional representative in the U.S. delegation to United Nations for the coming year. Sununu plans to be in New York for the opening of the U.N. General Assembly next week; President Bush is scheduled to speak. Sen. Patrick Leahy, a Democrat from Vermont, was also chosen to serve with Sununu.

Today's talkers

WMUR Close Up: Guests include Tom Rath; Jim Demers; Colin Manning, Foster's Daily Democrat; Josh Rogers, New Hampshire Public Radio; and Andy Smith, director of the University of New Hampshire Survey Center. 12:30 p.m.

Quote of the week

"We saw a few voters and a lot of trees."

- Democratic congressional candidate Paul Hodes, who spent last Tuesday flying around the Second District, on the light turn out at the polls.

------ End of article
Logged
"The more corrupt the state, the more numerous the laws" -- Tacitus, Roman senator and historian (A.D. c.56- c.115)

DC

  • FSP Participant
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 435
  • I'm a llama!
Re: Benson can't exactly count on Concord's GOP
« Reply #1 on: September 19, 2004, 01:55:36 pm »

I was in Concord last week and there were lots of signs for Lynch for govenor and Kerry for president. This town needs a lot of work.
Logged
Governments view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves ,tax it.If it keeps moving,regulate it.And if it stops moving,subsidise it.--Ronald Reagan-- Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys P.J. O'Rourke

Condon

  • FSP Participant
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 112
  • Tim Condon, ALR (Alien Literary Representative)
Re: Benson can't exactly count on Concord's GOP
« Reply #2 on: September 19, 2004, 04:54:31 pm »

Of course. Concord is a "company town." That "company" is government. It's only to be expected. Washington DC is the "company town" for the United States; want to know how many Democrats (socialists) are registered there versus Republicans (who at least talk a good line, sometimes, about smaller government and lower taxes)? There's a huge disparity in favor of Democrats. But guess what: As state government is shrunk by 2/3 to 3/4 (or more) over the years ahead, there will be fewer and fewer "company jobs," and many of the jobs remaining will be held by libertarians and libertarian-types. Meaning far fewer votes will exist for ever larger government and ever more taxes.
Logged

rdeacon

  • FSP Participant
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1874
  • Six Years Into a Ten Year Sojourn
Re: Benson can't exactly count on Concord's GOP
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2004, 09:03:44 am »

I dunno, I rarely see Benson signs and I'm over in Cheshire county.  Sure, it's a big Democrat stronghold, but even the people who put up GWB signs or Tom Eaton signs don't have Benson signs.  Lynch signs, however, are all over the place.

On another thread we discussed our concerns about the Benson campaign.  His web site was up very late, and I didn't see a place to get yard signs on it until a few weeks ago.  He's running, IMHO, a rather lackluster campaign outside of his speaking engagement.  His stump speech is really good though (he gave it at the NHLA dinner in June to much fanfare).

At the end of the day I think he'll beat Lynch, but Lynch is looking more and more like Rocky to his Apollo Creed.  While Rocky is out training, Apollo barely gives their match a second thought.
Logged

Mike Lorrey

  • FSP Participant
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2745
  • Live Free and Never Die
    • The International Libertarian
Re: Benson can't exactly count on Concord's GOP
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2004, 11:01:04 am »

I have two large 4'x4' Benson signs at my office in Manchester if anybody wants them to put up in Cheshire County.

Keep an eye out for Democrats sabotaging signs. With the recent ballot access issue, we found they were calling people who signed petitions, claiming to be from "Clean Ballot" and scaring people into rescinding their petition signatures. The Dems are going to be playing very dirty this year here in NH, so keep an eye out for more tricks.
« Last Edit: September 26, 2004, 11:02:42 am by Mike Lorrey »
Logged
The International Libertarian: The Journal of Liberty For Everyone, Everywhere, All The Time

Greenbacks

  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2680
Re: Benson can't exactly count on Concord's GOP
« Reply #5 on: September 26, 2004, 11:30:29 am »

Quote
The Dems are going to be playing very dirty this year here in NH, so keep an eye out for more tricks.

you mean like the phone jamming dirty trick?

http://www.politicsnh.com/press_releases/2004/July/7_27nhdp.shtml
« Last Edit: September 26, 2004, 11:32:20 am by Greenbacks »
Logged

Condon

  • FSP Participant
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 112
  • Tim Condon, ALR (Alien Literary Representative)
Re: Benson can't exactly count on Concord's GOP
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2004, 01:29:56 pm »

"You mean like the phone jamming dirty trick?"

Your point being, Henry? Is it that since at least one Republican conspired to jam phone lines belonging to the Democrats, then it's okay for the Democrats to use other dirty tricks to keep the Libertarian Party off the ballot in New Hampshire? Or that it's now okay for the Democrats to vandalize and remove GOP signs for Benson?

Do let us know.
Logged

Greenbacks

  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2680
Re: Benson can't exactly count on Concord's GOP
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2004, 02:13:28 pm »

Quote
then it's okay for the Democrats to use other dirty tricks to keep the Libertarian Party off the ballot in New Hampshire?

why would the Democrats try to keep the LP off the ballot when having Bednarik on will hurt their opponent more then their candidate?

doesn't it make more sense that the chairman of Bush's re-election campaign here in NH and a friend of FSP might want that to happen?

« Last Edit: September 26, 2004, 02:15:47 pm by Greenbacks »
Logged

Mike Lorrey

  • FSP Participant
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2745
  • Live Free and Never Die
    • The International Libertarian
Re: Benson can't exactly count on Concord's GOP
« Reply #8 on: September 26, 2004, 04:42:20 pm »

because we wouldn't have hurt Bush here in NH, we'd be hurting Kerry. The gun debate isn't an issue here, as both sides are generally pro gun to varying degrees, though the dems in NH would like more controls, they are not per se anti-gun, for the most part. Peter Burling is on record, for instance, saying he likes the gun laws as they are.

What distinguishes Badnarik is that he is anti-war, while both Kerry and Bush are not. Dems who vote for Kerry because they are against the war are fools because he's as much pro-war as Bush is. Kerry's campaign is therefore more worried about anti-war people having the choice to vote for ANYBODY but Kerry, as NH is going to be a tight race this year. The Dems played tricks to keep ALL third parties off the ballot this year, not just Nader.
Logged
The International Libertarian: The Journal of Liberty For Everyone, Everywhere, All The Time

Greenbacks

  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2680
Re: Benson can't exactly count on Concord's GOP
« Reply #9 on: September 26, 2004, 05:47:00 pm »

do you have any evidence to support this conjecture besides LP spin?

this may have a snowballs chance if Nader was not in the race but none with him in

Nader has consistently polled that he would pull more from Republicans than Democrats and he is to the left of Bednarik.

almost all of the petitions that Nader submitted to the towns were accepted and now we are to believe that more than half of the 4500 submitted from Bednarik were thrown out?

do I hear quid pro quo at the barbeque????
Logged

Mike Lorrey

  • FSP Participant
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2745
  • Live Free and Never Die
    • The International Libertarian
Re: Benson can't exactly count on Concord's GOP
« Reply #10 on: September 26, 2004, 08:22:35 pm »

You aren't privy to what happened at Friday's Ballot Law Commission hearing. The democrats were running a scam group called "Clean Ballots" that went around spreading lies to people who had signed ballot access petitions for Nader, Badnarik, and Peroutka, and talking them into recinding their petition signatures. This came out at the commission hearing, but the commission only let Nader on the ballot.
Logged
The International Libertarian: The Journal of Liberty For Everyone, Everywhere, All The Time

Greenbacks

  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2680
Re: Benson can't exactly count on Concord's GOP
« Reply #11 on: September 26, 2004, 09:09:52 pm »

Quote
but the commission only let Nader on the ballot.

why?

Quote
talking them into recinding their petition signatures

how many did?

Quote
You aren't privy to what happened at Friday's Ballot Law Commission hearing

of course I am privy to what happened on Friday (I know the lawyers involved) "The Ballot Project" did the same thing in Oregon to Nader supporters but what does that have to do with what I posted?

they challenged 300 of the 1785 Nader signatures submitted in 1 of the districts

how many Bednarik signatures were submitted and how many were officially disqualified?

the secretary of state said there were 929 signatures in the first district and 1,263 in the second and the LPNH claims between 4-5K just like Nader campaign.
Logged

Mike Lorrey

  • FSP Participant
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2745
  • Live Free and Never Die
    • The International Libertarian
Re: Benson can't exactly count on Concord's GOP
« Reply #12 on: September 27, 2004, 01:17:31 pm »

We actually went in with just under 4000 signatures. Some were collected by some pro petitioners brought in by National who, unbeknownst to us, had double contracted with Nader to petition, in ignorance of the law we have that you can only sign a ballot access petition for one party. If you sign multiple parties, the first one to town hall with your signature gets it.

The town clerks and checklist supervisors were rejecting lots of people for very specious excuses. Some signers addresses had been renumbered by E911, so their checklist address was different from the postal addy they put on their petition. Some people had moved across town, and even though they were registered, they weren't registered at the address given. Some petitions, written very clearly, wer rejected as "illegible". Somewhere between 100-200 petitions either were stolen by unnamed persons at city halls, sent back after the statutory Sept 1 deadline, or never reported back by town clerks has having been ready for pickup (Keene states it doesn't mail them back to us, you have to pick them up, but they never called Jim Maynard to tell him this.)  All petitions submitted to Rochester were stolen by some unknown person. At least four other towns returned petitions late, even after the Sept 8 deadline for us to turn certified petitions into the Sect'y of State.

Nashua police even went out of their jurisdiction onto Postal Service property to arrest one of our petitioners (where only federal marshal or postal inspectors have authority to effect arrests).

Lets see now: Rochester, Keene, Nashua, Manchester (which cetified only 170 of 400 petitions submitted), and several other towns (is this starting to look like a pattern to you yet?) were involved in this widespread series of questionable events. It quacks like a conspiracy to me.

Logged
The International Libertarian: The Journal of Liberty For Everyone, Everywhere, All The Time

Greenbacks

  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2680
Re: Benson can't exactly count on Concord's GOP
« Reply #13 on: September 27, 2004, 02:05:04 pm »

so you are claiming 45% (1800/3900) of the petitions were disqualified, stolen, or botched in one way or another?

for a candidate who's name on the ballot will hurt Bush more than Kerry because Nader is ON the ballot?

whereas, Nader submits LESS petitions and is EASILY certified as the DemoRats challenges are summarily dismissed in the hearing and we know that there has been a MASSIVE, well documented, national assault on the Nader campaign's ballot access efforts.

and we are not to think that your pal Craig, the HEAD of the Bush re-election campaign here in NH and possible future Republican "leader" has not had anything to do with this?

yeah right!

where is that swamp land for sale Mike?
« Last Edit: September 27, 2004, 09:19:43 pm by Greenbacks »
Logged

Old Nick

  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 680
Re: Benson can't exactly count on Concord's GOP
« Reply #14 on: September 27, 2004, 06:46:30 pm »

You're right, Bill. It just doesn't add up.

Nader is the Democrats' greatest threat. That they would've targeted- or could've eliminated- Badnarik and Peroutka [who is VERY, VERY different from Badnarik damnit] but NOT Nader is just absolutely impossible.

The Democrats ARE capable of this kind of treachery, no doubt about it.. but so are the goddamned Republicans, and with the circumstances as they are? Ha... I smell elephant.
« Last Edit: September 27, 2004, 06:48:27 pm by Old Nick »
Logged
God told me to strike at al Qaeda and I struck them, and then He instructed me to strike at Saddam, which I did, and now I am determined to solve the problem in the Middle East."
-- George W. Bush to Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas, July 2003
Pages: [1] 2 3   Go Up
 

anything