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September 11. 2012 10:59PM

Sanborn gets District 9 GOP win over Hawkins

MANCHESTER — Former state Sen. Andy Sanborn will be running in the general election to represent another district winning the Republican primary Tuesday over long-time Bedford Rep. Ken Hawkins.

The race for the District 9 State Senate seat was an often bitter race as Sanborn and Hawkins traded charges and more charges for much of the contest.

With 93 percent of the precincts reporting, Sanborn held a two-to-one lead over Hawkins in the redrawn distrct that stretches from Bedford to Richmond and Fritzwilliam.

Sanborn of Bedford had 60 percent of the vote while Hawkins had 29 percent and the third candidate in the contest, Michael Kenney of Bedford, had 11 percent of the vote. While the race was close in their hometown of Bedford, Sanborn easily outdistanced Hawkins in towns in the western side of the district. For example, in Hancock, Sanborn received 173 votes, while Hawkins had 26, and in Richmond, Sanborn had 91 votes to Hawkins’ 36.

Current District 7 Sen. Ray White, R-Bedford, did not seek reelection. Sanborn, who lived in Henniker, represented District 7 in the state Senate but resigned before the June filing period for state office began and moved to Bedford. His wife who was a state representative also resigned and is running for the House again from Bedford as well.

Under the new senate boundaries, Henniker is now in District 15 where Sanborn would have had to face former State Senate President Sylvia Larsen, D-Concord.

Sanborn and his wife said they moved to Bedford to be closer to her family.

Hawkins announced soon after White said he would not be seeking reelection that he would seek the seat after spending 10 years in the House.

The bitter contest produced numerous attack mailings with Sanborn accusing Hawkins of being a tax and spender.

At one point, Hawkins filed a complaint with the Attorney General’s office about several mailings he claimed were done illegally.

One mailer called him a “Trojan Horse Candidate” saying he supports higher taxes, greater government spending and opposes tax cuts.”

Several of the mailers were produced by Sen. James Forsythe, R-Stafford, who endorsed Sanborn in the race and like Sanborn supported Ron Paul for President.

Residents of the newly drawn District 9 that stretches from Bedford to Richmond also received a four-page letter from Sanborn’s wife, Laurie, who is running for the House.

In the letter she write “As a State Senator for the past two years he has always fought for the underdog, whether its the small business owner fighting aginst extremem over regulation onr the taxpayer struggling to get the refund he’s due or a town looking for the state to fulfill its promises. He fights for what’s right and he will fight for you.”

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Garry Rayno may be reached at grayno@unionleader.com.

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