State and national Republican campaigns disagree about absentee voting in New Hampshire.
On Tuesday, Republican Gov. Chris Sununu praised state and local election officials, saying they are well-prepared to handle a higher-than-usual number of mailed-in absentee ballots.
“We do it really well, we do it really, really well,” Sununu said. “We have a great not just tradition, but a very reliable system, a system with a lot of integrity. It has worked, tried and true, year after year after year.”
Meanwhile, spokespeople for Donald Trump‘s re-election campaign in New Hampshire and Maine said almost the opposite. Over the past few days, the Trump campaign has churned out statements warning of the dangers of voting by mail, which they call a Democratic plan.
“Their irresponsible experiment would eliminate safeguards, invite fraud, and weaken the integrity of our elections,” read one statement from Andrew Mahaleris, the Trump campaign’s deputy communications director for New Hampshire and Maine.
Other statements warned of “fraud and disorganization” and a “legitimate threat to the integrity of our elections” raised by the prospect of people mailing in their ballots instead of voting in person.
Sununu praised New Hampshire’s absentee voting infrastructure, which he noted is run by election officials at the town and city level. “It’s a pretty seamless system.”
RNC spokeswoman Nina McLaughlin said said in an email that the Trump campaign is opposed to “a nationwide experiment” that would remove safeguards and invite fraud.
What name again?
A University of New Hampshire panel shows Sen. Jeanne Shaheen running well ahead of both Corky Messner and Don Bolduc, the two main Republicans vying to challenge her.
Per the panel, Shaheen has big leads over Bolduc and Messner among women, voters 18 to 34 and voters over 65.
Name recognition is a challenge for both GOP candidates. More than half of all voters said they didn’t know Bolduc, and 43% said they didn’t know Messner. Even among Republican voters, 53% said they didn’t know Bolduc and 40% didn’t know Messner.
The panel noted Messner’s significant spending on advertising is getting him a bit more name-recognition and favorability among Republican voters than Bolduc has.
In the governor’s race, the panel shows Sununu still has the advantage over state Sen. Dan Feltes and Executive Councilor Andru Volinsky, with 56% of respondents saying they have a favorable opinion of Sununu, and close to 60% saying they would choose Sununu in a matchup with Volinsky or Feltes.
More than half of voters say they have not heard of Feltes or Volinsky.
Gatsas endorses Clegg
Executive Councilor and former Manchester mayor Ted Gatsas endorsed former state Sen. Bob Clegg in the Fifth District race for Executive Council.
Clegg is running against Dave Wheeler in the Republican primary. Wheeler is a former executive councilor who has run against incumbent Democrat Debora Pignatelli before, as the Fifth District seat has swung from Republican to Democrat and back over the past 15 years.
“Bob Clegg is exactly the kind of true New Hampshire conservative that we need on the Executive Council,” Gatsas said in a statement.
Local backing for Biden
After Joe Biden’s presidential campaign released its “Agenda for Women” this week, the campaign enlisted support from an array of women in New Hampshire politics to boost Biden’s broad range of proposals, from addressing the backlog of rape kits to supporting anti-discrimination legislation as well as student loan forgiveness.
Rep. Annie Kuster, Mayor Joyce Craig and state Senate President Donna Soucy of Manchester, along with state Sens. Cindy Rosenwald of Nashua and Melanie Levesque of Brookline, were among the local politicians who co-signed Biden’s proposals. Neither of New Hampshire’s two Democratic women senators is on the list of policy-endorsers.
Duct, duct, vent
After Department of Health and Human Services Commissioner Lori Shibinette announced an inquiry into the state of nursing home ventilation Tuesday, Executive Councilor Andru Volinsky did a little venting of his own about other ventilation systems.
“As we head into the back-to-school stretch, I call on Sununu to address the very real emergency associated with the lack of proper HVAC ventilation systems in our schools,” Volinsky wrote in a statement. “School districts are being left to fend for themselves with no real guidance or resources.”
Trump tele-rally planned
In an email to supporters Wednesday, Trump’s campaign announced the president would address New Hampshire supporters in a “tele-rally” on Thursday.
A similar rally was streamed from the campaign’s Facebook page on Tuesday.