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August 09. 2011 8:08PM

Democrat wins special House election

Democrat Bob Perry has won a special election held Tuesday to fill a vacant New Hampshire House seat, according to New Hampshire Democrats.

Perry, a former state rep, beat Republican opponent Honey Puterbaugh 2,110 to 1,517, according to numbers provided by the New Hampshire Democratic Party.

Perry took five of the six towns in Strafford County House District No. 3, a Republican-leaning district where the GOP will hold seven of the eight seats, Perry being the one exception.

The race is viewed as a bellwether on how the state is being run and a win for either candidate was viewed as a victory for their party.

“Bob Perry's victory tonight is a complete and total rejection of Republican House Speaker Bill O'Brien's reckless job-killing agenda,” said New Hampshire Democratic Party Chair Raymond Buckley. “In a historically Republican district, New Hampshire voters turned out in the middle of summer to send a loud and clear message to the out-of-control Republican majority. Its relentless attempts to make cigarettes cheaper but college more expensive, slash women's health care, and kill jobs by taxing hospitals must stop immediately. “

His Republican counterpart, Jack Kimball, said the outcome disappointed him.

"Honey (Puterbaugh) ran an outstanding campaign and I would like to commend her and her volunteers for working extremely hard all summer knocking on doors and listening to the voters' concerns," Kimball said.

He said Perry voted for numerous tax and fee increases, including the since-rescinded LLC small-business tax and ran up a massive deficit.

The numbers work out to 58 to 42 percent. Both Barrington and Strafford delivered margins of more than 200 votes for Perry.

Only the town of Middleton, the smallest in the district, favored Puterbaugh.

The seat was vacated after former Republican Rep. Martin Harty resigned in March.

Harty came under fire for telling a constituent during a phone call that mental illness should be treated with a one-way trip to Siberia and that eugenics, a form of genetic engineering espoused in Nazi Germany, could help with population control and mental illness.


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