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John DiStaso's Granite Status: Democrat Nyquist to roll out GOP supporters of his state Senate run

Senior Political Reporter

October 03. 2012 3:07PM

WEDNESDAY, OCT. 3, UPDATE: REPUBLICANS FOR LEE. Democrat Lee Nyquist will announce later today he's being endorsed by 51 Republicans in his run for the District 9 state Senate seat.

Nyquist is facing former state Sen. Andy Sanborn, who relocated from Henniker to Bedford earlier this year.

The full list can be seen soon at It includes retired Bedford police chief David Bailey, former GOP legislator Susan Clay and businessman Tom Bisceglia, both of New Boston, and Daniel Sklar of Bedford.

Among Republican Nyquist supporters who reside outside of the district are long-time activist Claira Monier of Goffstown and attorney Kimon Zachos of Exeter.

Nyquist, who is focusing on bipartisanship and 'civility' in his campaign, said he was 'humbled' by the support.

Nyquist this week also picked up the endorsement of the Professional Fire Fighters of New Hampshire.

(Earlier updates and the full Sept. 27 Granite Status follow.)

TUESDAY, OCT. 2, UPDATE: SIMPSON, BOWLES BACK BASS. Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson, the bipartisan leaders of the Simpson-Bowles commission, are endorsing Republican U.S. Rep. Charlie Bass for reelection.

The Bass campaign will have full-page ads in the New Hampshire Union Leader and other state daily newspapers tomorrow touting the endorsement.

As Bass secured the endorsement, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee on Tuesday released its first independent expenditure television ads in both of the state's congressional districts.

Bowles, a Democrat, is the former chief of staff to former President Bill Clinton, who coincidentally, will be in Durham tomorrow campaigning for President Barack Obama.

Simpson is the Republican former long-time U.S. Senator from Wyoming.

The Simpson-Bowles Commission in 2010 worked on a deficit reduction plan than included a combination of budget cuts, entitlement reform and $100 billion in new tax revenues. Although the commission failed to reach super-majority agreement on the plan put forward by its leadership, the plan became the basis for bipartisan efforts in Congress to reduce the deficit.

Former U.S. Sen. Judd Gregg, R-N.H., served on the commission and supported the plan.

Bass was among a small group of congressmen who later cosponsored a bipartisan budget based on the Simpson-Bowles plan. He is believed to be the first congressional candidate this year to have received Simpson and Bowles' joint personal endorsement.

In a letter, Simpson and Bowles call Bass a 'leader' who has been 'willing to put partisan differences aside and come together to present the American people with real solutions and compromise.'

'Charlie Bass put partisanship aside and stepped forward to make the tough decisions our nation needs,' they wrote, calling him 'a brave leader.'

The 2nd District DCCC ad says Bass went along with 'Washington party leaders' to vote for the Paul Ryan budget plan, which the ad says, 'would essentially end' Medicare. It shows an animated Bass following animated figures of House speaker John Boehner, vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan, Rep. Michele Bachmann and other Republicans.

The 1st District DCCC ad has a group six men complaining that Republican Rep. Frank Guinta 'wants to put the government in charge of women's medical decisions.'

(Earlier updates and the full Sept. 27 Granite Status follow.)

TUESDAY, OCT. 2, UPDATE: TAGG: POLL AN 'ANOMALY.' Tagg Romney wasn't quite as blunt as former Gov. John H. Sununu, but Mitt Romney's eldest son said today a new poll showing his Dad 15 percentage points behind President Barack Obama in swing state New Hampshire is an 'anomaly.'

'We've seen lots of other polls, including our own internal polls, that have us inside the margin of error,' Tagg Romney said while campaigning across the state.

'Our own polls have us up a couple. We feel very good here. We feel like we've got a lot of momentum. Enthusiasm is high.'

'New Hampshire has come through for us in the past and we think it will again,' Romney said.

Sununu, one of Mitt Romney's top surrogates, was a bit more harsh.

On MSNBC this morning, he called the poll showing Obama leading Romney, 52-37 percent, in New Hampshire 'a piece of garbage.' The poll was completed by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center for WMUR television.

'This race in New Hampshire will be won by Mitt Romney by 2 to 3 points,' Sununu said. 'I've said that all along, and I'm willing to say that publicly and stick by it, and I know that poll (of) 15 points is absolutely invalid.'

Later, Sununu told reporters that UNH polling is notoriously 'volatile.'

'We are historically looking at skewing in the population of Republicans, Democrats and independents there.'

Sununu noted that Rasmussen Reports last week had a poll with Romney ahead by 3 percentage points in New Hampshire.

'There is no way you can have that kind of volatility,' he said. 'Rasmussen has been quite good with New Hampshire polls.'

Tagg Romney said the state's relatively low unemployment rate does not tell the full story of economic strife facing middle-class Granite Staters.

He said a sawmill worker this week hold him he is still employed, 'but take home pay has been stagnant or shrinking for everyone there because business is just off.

'They haven't seen any growth in the past four years and things just aren't getting any better,' he said.

Romney said Wednesday night's first debate between Obama and his father will obviously be important but not necessarily a turning point in the campaign.

'Just be yourself,' is the advice he said he gave Mitt Romney, as many Americans will hear Romney for the first time 'unfiltered by the mainstream media's lens.'

'People know that Barack Obama's policies aren't working, but they want to know whether this other guy can be President,' Tagg Romney said.

He said he does not expect commentators in the mainstream media to declare Romney the winner even if his performance is top-notch.

'They're never going to do that, no matter what happens,' he said.

In this race and generally, he said, 'A Republican has to run against the Democrat and most of the media.'

(Earlier updates and the full Sept. 27 Granite Status follow.)

MONDAY, OCT. 1, UPDATE: GOP HITTING DEMS ON TAXES, 'BEHAVIOR.' The Republican Governors Association hits Democratic candidate for governor Maggie Hassan on taxes in a new 15-second television ad that began airing today.

The ad contends Hassan 'pushed 33 tax and fee increases' while a state senator, including 'a new tax on small businesses (the LLC tax).'

It says Hassan 'believes in high taxes' while 'New Hampshire doesn't.'

Hassan campaign manager Matt Burgess said, "Ovide's right-wing allies keep recycling the same old misleading attacks, but New Hampshire voters know they can trust Maggie Hassan to veto any sales or income tax.

"In the midst of the recession, Maggie Hassan worked closely with Governor Lynch to cut state spending and balance the budget, without an income or a sales tax.

"Ovide is trying to hide from his extreme agenda that will hurt New Hampshire's middle-class families and the economy, including turning Medicare into a state-run voucher program, which would cost seniors thousands of dollars a year; blocking local schools from receiving $60 million in federal education aid; and cutting access to preventative care, cancer screenings and affordable birth control for women. Maggie has the right priorities and an innovative plan to create jobs and move New Hampshire forward," Burgess said.

Also Monday, the National Republican Congressional Committee has spun into an ad the controversial tracker video in which Democratic takes a camera from a tracker for Republican Charlie Bass and says the first letter of an obscenity followed by the word, "him."

Kuster said later she refused to be "bullied" by Bass or the Republicans.

The ad, entitled 'Lost It,' contends her 'behavior' is 'making votes question her judgment.'

Kuster spokesman Rob Friedlander responded, "After 14 years in Washington and with his poll numbers sliding, Congressman Bass is waging an increasingly desperate campaign. This is just the latest stunt meant to distract voters from his consistent record of voting to end Medicare as we know it while voting to raise his own pay.'

(Earlier updates and the full Sept. 27 Granite Status follow.)

FRIDAY, SEPT. 28, UPDATE: MORE POLLING. A new poll commissioned by the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, a liberal PAC, shows Republican incumbent Frank Guinta and Democratic challenger Carol Shea-Porter in a statistical tie in the 1st Congressional District race and Democrat Ann Mclane Kuster with a small lead over Republican Rep. Charlie Bass in the 2nd District.

The poll was completed by Public Policy Polling on Sept. 24 and 25.

Sampling 401 likely voters in the 1st District, the poll showed Shea-Porter at 48 percent and Guinta at 47 percent with 4 percent undecided. The margin of error is 4.9 percent.

Sampling 461 likely voters in the 2nd District Kuster leads Bass, 51 to 45 percent with 4 percent undecided. The margin of error is 4.6 percent.

PCCC declined to release the party breakdown of the samples, but spokesman Neil Sroka noted that PPP has been cited for it's accuracy.

"We're very comfortable with PPP's track record," he said.

Earlier today, PCCC released polling by Public Policy Polling in the gubernatorial race showing Democrat Maggie Hassan leading Republican Ovide Lamontagne, 51 to 44 percent. The sample was 862 likely voters with a margin of error of 3.3 percent.

The congressional poll also showed that likely voters believe Republicans are more responsible for gridlock in Washington than Democrats.

In the 1st District, 52 percent blame Republicans more, while 34 percent blame Democrats. In the 2nd District, 50 percent blame Republicans more and 33 percent blame Democrats.

The PCCC also endorsed Shea-Porter today. It endorsed Kuster in September 2011.

'Voters know that Tea Party Republicans like Charlie Bass and Frank Guinta are blocking progress in Washington. Annie Kuster and Carol Shea Porter will be champions for working families, not Wall Street banks and big insurance companies,' said Sroka.

'We are proud to endorse them and mobilize our nearly 5,600 New Hampshire members to help them win,' he said.

(Earlier updates and the full Sept. 27 Granite Status follow.)

FRIDAY, SEPT. 28, UPDATE: CLINTON'S DEBATE WARM-UP. Former President Bill Clinton will visit New Hampshire to warm up supporters of President Barack Obama for the first debate of the general election campaign next Wednesday.

The Granite Status has learned that Clinton will here on Oct. 3 for at least one grassroots event at a location yet to be announced. It's also unclear if he will watch the first of three debates between Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney in New Hampshire.

'President Clinton has more credibility on the campaign trail than anyone else as a former President who faced similar economic and political challenges and pursued a similar path as President Obama, and he has offered to do as much as he can to help the President get re-elected,' said an Obama campaign official.

During the visit, Clinton 'will continue to hit many of the themes he highlighted in his Democratic National Convention speech,' the official said.

'This is the second campaign event President Clinton has done for the campaign, and we can't think of a better place for him to underscore this contrast than New Hampshire, a state where he has a long history,' the official noted. 'From Conway to Claremont and Dalton to Dover he continues to be one of New Hampshire's most beloved political figures.'

Clinton famously dubbed himself 'the Comeback Kid' after finishing second in the 1992 New Hampshire first-in-the-nation primary. He carried the state in the 1992 and 1996 general elections and visited the state often as President and occasionally after leaving office.

He was most recently in New Hampshire on July 25 to endorse Democrat Maggie Hassan for governor at a rally in Nashua.

The Obama campaign said Clinton will continue to appear at events across the country supporting Obama during the next 40 days, including additional grassroots appearances in swing states.

Word of Clinton's visit comes as a new NBC/Wall Street Journal/Marist poll of about 1,600 likely New Hampshire voters shows Obama leading Romney, 51 to 44 percent. The poll's margin of error is 2.7 percent.

The same poll shows the state's two major candidates for governor in a statistical dead heat, with Democrat Maggie Hassan leading Republican Ovide Lamontagne, 47 to 45 percent.

The Romney campaign, meanwhile, has vice presidential nominee and U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan coming to the state on Saturday for a morning rally at Pinkerton Academy in Derry. On Saturday afternoon, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker will be featured at a rally at the McIntyre Ski Area in Manchester after he speaks to the NHGOP state convention in Derry.

(Earlier updates and the full Sept. 27 Granite Status follow.)

THURSDAY, SEPT. 27, UPDATE: THE PLATFORM DEBATE. Republican state chairman Wayne MacDonald is 'sorry' long-time conservative activist Karen Testerman wants him to resign, but he intends to stay in the post.

MacDonald told the Granite Status tonight he realizes 'there are disagreements' over the proposed new party platform to be taken up at the NHGOP convention in Derry on Saturday. But he said that he and the rest of the party executive committee support it while being open to amendments and realize convention delegates will have the final say.

Testerman, the former head of the conservative advocacy group Cornerstone Research, said many delegates told her they were not 'properly notified' of the convention and of their responsibilities.

'Some of the people who won their primaries are not even aware of the fact that they are delegates to the convention'or that the convention is taking place, said Testerman, who is not a delegate.

'People don't know what the rules are. It's crazy and that's one of his primary responsibilities, and if he's not going to do his job, he should resign.'

Click here for the CURRENT NHGOP platform

Click here for the PROPOSED NHGOP platform.

'All of the notices went out properly and we're going to have a good convention,' MacDonald said. 'I'm not sure what Karen is talking about.

'I'm just kind of dumbfounded by her intense feelings and I am sorry she feels that way.'

Saturday will feature two of Wisconsin's biggest political stars. Vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan will hold a rally at the Pinkerton Academy before the convention begins and the keynote speaker at the convention will be Gov. Scott Walker.

But when the speeches end and business begins, there could be fireworks.

There have been complaints from conservatives that the proposed new platform waters down key issues, such as its pro-life plank and plank on education.

Some are concerned that a statement supporting veterans receiving benefits has been removed. Some have complained that the current platform's focus on New Hampshire Constitution has been lessened.

Also, some say it was not a good idea to make wholesale changes to the platform for a convention held at the height of the campaign season.

'We understand that there are some Republicans who prefer a wordy, legislatively toned platform,' said platform committee chair Jennifer Horn.

'But overwhelmingly, that was not the message we got at the public hearings and from others who chimed in throughout the process.'

A compromise plan was being floated Thursday what would use the proposed new 'Statement of Principles' portion as a an opening statement and then clean up some outdated language in the existing platform.

Horn said work would be done Thursday night and a committee amendment addressing many concerns is possible.

There has been speculation that House speaker Bill O'Brien, who chaired the platform committee in 2010 and had much to do with current platform, is unhappy with the new proposal. But sources close to him say that while he has spoken with some dissidents and platform committee members, he is not injecting himself directly into the debate.

MacDonald, meanwhile, said the proposed platform 'is not the final version by any stretch,' but believes the platform has not been weakened by the proposed change in language.

'The goal has been to make it a little more user friendly,' he said. 'We want citizens to have a very quick and clear idea of what our party stands for.

'Obviously the shorter and more direct something is, the more effective it can be in terms of a communications tool and a marketing tool,' said MacDonald.

He also noted that conservatives worked on it, naming platform committee members state Reps. Paul Mirski, R-Enfield, Spec Bowers and Dan McGuire, leaders in the House Republican Alliance, and Franklin Mayor Ken Merrifield.

'There is no attempt to water it down,' said MacDonald. 'That was certainly not the intent of the committee. If delegates want to amend it on Saturday, that is their right and I respect that.'

(Earlier updates and the full Granite Status follow.)

THURSDAY, SEPT. 27, UPDATE: DGA POLL: MAGGIE AHEAD. At this point in the campaign season, there's much internal polling taking place on both sides in all the major races.

In addition to the Greenberg Quinlan Rosner poll completed for the Democratic Party (see item below), which showed a statistical tie in the race for governor between Democratic Maggie Hassan and Ovide Lamontagne, a new internal Democratic poll is being circulated.

We've learned this one was completed within the past several days by the Feldman Group for the New Hampshire Freedom Fund, a local PAC of the Democratic Governors Association. It shows Hassan leading Lamontagne 50 to 41 percent.

The poll of 500 Granite Staters also found that both candidates 'have increased their profiles among the electorate.'

According to the poll, 77 percent have recently seen new information about both candidates, and 34 percent said the information they have seen makes them more favorable toward Hassan, while 24 percent said it makes them less favorable toward her.

Twenty-seven percent said they have a more favorable opinion of Lamontagne based on what they have seen or heard recently and 26 percent said they are less favorable toward him.

Republicans said late Thursday that DGA-commissioned polls have not always been entirely accurate, pointing to the Wisconsin gubernatorial recall election and a special election in West Virginia.

THURSDAY, SEPT. 27, UPDATE: NEW POLICY STATEMENTS. Meanwhile Thursday, Hassan and Lamontagne issued new policy statements.

Lamontagne issued a 'health care reform agenda,' which, his campaign says, calls for 'an adjusted community-rating model that encourages individuals to take more control of their health decisions and rewards those who work to stay healthy.'

It also calls for 'increasing the number of insurance products available by reducing mandates and increasing competition.

Lamontagne also opposes the federal Affordable Care Act and says he would pursue a 'block grant or global waiver' to allow the state to 'locally manage and implement' Medicaid.

Hassan unveiled budget reforms in Portsmouth today. She proposed the establishment of a new Consensus Revenue Estimating Panel she said 'would bring together economists, state agencies, Republican and Democratic legislators, along with the Governor's office, to develop and update revenue estimates for the state throughout the year.' She said the panel would de-politicize the important process of forecasting revenues.

She would also work with lawmakers 'to review the auditing process for auditing state agencies to ensure that the biggest programs and the biggest agencies are audited more often to find greater efficiencies and savings,' according to her campaign.

(The full Sept. 27 Granite Status follows.)

THURSDAY, SEPT. 27: THE GOP PLATFORM. There could be a fight over proposed changes to the pro-life plank at the GOP's state convention on Saturday.

Veteran activist Karen Testerman is drumming up support to keep the current platform largely intact.

She says the proposed new plank 'gutted' the strong, detailed pro-life stance in the current document. She also points out that references to 'God' have been replaced with a reference to 'Our Creator.'

'When we criticize the National Democratic Party for their removal of references to God,' Testerman wrote in an email, 'are we not 'calling the kettle black?''

But platform committee chair Jennifer Horn says that while the committee has changed the format of the platform from a 'legislative-based document to a more principle-based document,' it 'still has a very strong pro-life plank.'

'The format has changed but we in no way gutted the life message,' Horn said.

Horn said she expected the reference to God to be restored at a platform committee meeting Wednesday night. She said having 'Our Creator' in the statement of principles is very clear.

The current platform not only states principles, but cites specific laws or constitutional amendments. In the area of 'The Family,' it supports a human life amendment and endorses legislation 'to make clear that Fourteenth Amendment protections apply to unborn children.'

It mentions parental consent for abortion, barring the use of public money to fund or promote abortion and supporting pro-life judges as well as opposing embryonic stem cell research - and more.

The proposed platform is about half as long and boils the life plank down to, "We believe that life is sacred, from conception to natural death, that strong families are the foundation of a strong community and that we cannot diminish the value of one category of human life without diminishing the value of all human life," and, 'Support the unborn child's fundamental right to life and implement all possible legal protections.'

Testerman, who is not a delegate, said, 'When you water things down you lose some of the important efforts that are going forward. There is major concern among the delegates and party members that this is such a drastic change. '

Horn said the platform committee held eight public hearings across the state, and, 'We received a very strong message that people wanted to preserve the conservative message but reform the structure and make it more accessible and more usable by Republican groups.'

The Republican Liberty Caucus of New Hampshire and two dozen influential Republicans, from moderate to conservative, have endorsed the proposed platform.

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NOT PULLING THE PLUG. The National Republican Congressional Committee denies a report out of Washington that it has given up on 1st District U.S. Rep. Frank Guinta.

The reported Wednesday the NRCC 'has no airtime reserved for' Guinta and two other 'vulnerable incumbents,' which is usually a sign that it's concluded they are bound to lose.

But we've learned the NRCC has $2.2 million reserved in airtime on Boston TV for Guinta, 2nd District U.S. Rep. Charlie Bass and Massachusetts' 6th District.

In Manchester, the NRCC has spent $40,000 in coordinated funds with the Guinta campaign and will spend another $40,000 at WMUR next week.

Republicans say they are confident from internal polling that Guinta is in a strong position, despite public polling showing Democrat Carol Shea-Porter slightly ahead.

'Frank Guinta is winning,' said NRCC spokesman Nat Sillin. 'If the race becomes competitive, the NRCC will gladly reintroduce Carol to the people who threw her out of office only two years ago.'

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RAZOR CLOSE. A new Democrat internal poll shows Democrat Maggie Hassan and Republican Ovide Lamontagne in a statistical dead heat in the race for the open governor's seat.

Hassan holds a 48 to 46 percent edge in the Sept. 15 to 19 poll of 600 likely voters conducted for the NHDP by Democratic pollster Greenberg Quinlan Rosner. The poll has a margin of error of 4.9 percent.

The sample breakdown is 31 percent Democrats, 30 percent Republicans and 39 percent independents.

Greenberg Quinlan Rosner says in a memo obtained by the Granite Status that Hassan 'enjoys stronger standing' than Lamontagne and 'is in a good position to win this race with an aggressive campaign and the resources necessary to communicate and define the choice in this election.'

The memo says Hassan 'is currently known to three-quarters of likely voters and gets very solid ratings, with a 37-24 percent favorable-unfavorable ratio.'

Lamontagne 'has 82 percent name recognition,' but has a '34-34 percent favorable-unfavorable.'

GQR says Hassan is running in a 'good political environment' with President Barack Obama leading Republican Mitt Romney, 52 to 45 percent, in New Hampshire and Gov. John Lynch with a 'very impressive 57-17 favorable-unfavorable ratio.'

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'PERSONAL CAPACITY.' The Obama camp brings Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius in on Friday and Saturday to speak at events in Durham, Portsmouth, Laconia, Concord, Nashua, Derry and Keene.

To avoid any Hatch Act issues, the campaign says she 'will be speaking to the press in her personal capacity' and even asked the media to ' refrain from using her official title at the event and in related press reports, and note that we will not be taking questions concerning her official responsibilities.'

Sebelius was recently cited by the Office of Special Counsel for violating the Hatch Act, which prohibits federal employees from campaigning while acting in an official capacity.

The OSC said Sebelius broke the law by saying in a February speech that it is 'imperative' to reelect President Obama. She also used the speech to openly support the election of local Democrats.

Sebelius called the violation 'technical and minor.' No specific punishment was cited.

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TOP SECRET. That must have been some high-brow fund-raiser Lamontagne had the other day at the Bedford Village Inn, featuring New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.

Perhaps sensitive to what is said at fund-raisers after the infamous Romney '47 percent' comment, the campaign closed it to the media and barred our photographer at the door.

And a reporter (this one) was kicked off the BVI property after simply wanting to get a comment from Christie outside of the event.

Hey, it wasn't the first time and probably won't be the last.

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'FRIENDS OF OVIDE.' Organized labor is countering visits by Christie and Wisconsin's Gov. Scott Walker with a planned canvass in Nashua on Saturday.

Also, the American Federation of Teachers-NH has endorsed Hassan.

And state Democrats put out a new web ad, entitled 'Friends of Ovide,' linking Lamontagne to what it described as the two anti-public education governors.

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THE DECIDING FACTOR. Republican National Committee Political Director Rick Wiley says that despite all the TV advertising, social media and other technological tools being used in the presidential election, battleground states including this one will be decided the old-fashioned way: on the ground.

Wiley, who directs grassroots organizing for the RNC and Romney campaign, was in New Hampshire Tuesday meeting with local staff and volunteers.

He said in an interview that while 'people are saying that Mitt Romney hasn't pulled ahead in some of these states, we've been outspent three-to-one. To be within a field goal six weeks out, these polls are just not changing and so a strong ground game can pick you up two or three percentage points.'

Wiley said 'phenomenal progress' has been made in New Hampshire and nationally.

He said volunteers in New Hampshire have knocked on 125,000 doors and contacted 750,000 voters.

After a divisive primary, 'it always takes a little while for all the camps to come together,'' but by now, 'We're definitely right there with (the Obama campaign) on the ground.'

Wiley also said that while other states are voting early in big numbers, New Hampshire is 'an Election Day state.

In Nevada, for instance, 75 percent of the population will vote early,' he said. 'But here it's about 90 percent will vote on Election Day.'

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BREAKING A 'PLEDGE?' Guinta's campaign manager says Shea-Porter is breaking a pledge by coordinating a 'massive' television ad buy with the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

Shea-Porter's campaign had used its own funds to pay for its ad accusing Guinta of voting against veterans. But Tuesday, the DCCC began picking up the tab through coordinated funds.

Guinta's Ethan Zorfas recalled that in May, Shea-Porter proposed she and Guinta jointly call on Super PACs to refrain from advertising in their race. She said it was OK with her if Super PACs engaged in grassroots organizing, however.

Guinta's camp refused, calling her hypocritical since a Super PAC called CREDO was involved in (and is still involved in) organizing and protesting against Guinta.

Zorfas said Shea-Porter broke her 'pledge' by allowing the DCCC to now pick up the payment for her ads.

He acknowledged that the DCCC is not a Super PAC, but called the DCCC ' one of Washington's largest special interests (the DCCC).'

'This is just more politics as usual from her,' he said.

Shea-Porter campaign manager Naomi Andrews said there was no pledge, just a jilted call for a joint statement with Guinta.

'We always said we would work with our team, and obviously the DCCC is our team,' she said.

Andrews pointed out the Guinta camp on Tuesday put up a response ad defending his votes on behalf of veterans, accusing Shea-Porter of 'false attacks' and criticizing her for voting in favor of the Obama stimulus, which, the Guinta ad says, 'provided tax breaks for companies that created jobs in countries like China' when she was in Congress.

It turns out the Guinta ad was paid for by both the Guinta campaign and the National Republican Congressional Committee - a similar payment arrangement to the Shea-Porter/DCCC partnership that the Guinta campaign is complaining about. And if the DCCC is a 'one of Washington's largest special interests,' wouldn't the NRCC be considered the same?

Zorfas said, 'But the difference is that my boss hasn't been writing columns for the past year saying how disgusting it is that outside groups are getting involved in the campaign.'

In a recent post on, Shea-Porter wrote 'I abhor the amount of money being spent by outside groups,'

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PAID 'VOLUNTEERS' WANTED. It's definitely political season when you can get paid for 'volunteering.'

Grassroots Solutions, a professional grassroots organizing firm that promotes liberal causes, has several ads on Craigslist.

'Professional political workers' can canvass the Concord and Manchester areas on behalf of Planned Parenthood of Northern New England for $100 per shift.

Another ad for the New Hampshire Democratic Canvass Team pays $12 an hour. An open Deputy Canvass Director post pays $3,000 for the month of October.

The nonprofit recruitment firm, Work for Progress, seeks 'campaign associates' to work 80 to 100 hours a week on behalf of Obama for compensation 'based on an annual salary of $23,750.'

And PoliticalDNA, which describes itself as 'the first and only social networking platform specifically created to help people discover their true political identity,' is seeking interns for college credit.

It all gives new meaning to the word 'volunteer.'

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John DiStaso is senior political reporter of the New Hampshire Union Leader and New Hampshire Sunday News. He can be reached at Twitter: @jdistaso.

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