Wednesday, March 22, 2023

New Hampshire Republican Senate Primary 2020

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Election Day Is Tuesday Nov 8

See GOP election deniers flip-flop after winning Senate primary

It is both a clear sign of Mr. Trumps iron grip on his partys base and a major gamble on whether candidates with extreme views principally, embracing Mr. Trumps lie that he won in 2020 can prevail in purple states. November will test if voter malaise about the economy and Democratic leadership in Washington is strong enough to blot out candidates hard-right views.

Mr. Bolduc led wire-to-wire in polling during his race. He amassed grass-roots support by traveling widely for two years and holding town hall-style events, where attendees fumed over President Biden and Democratic governance in Washington.

Mr. Sununu, a moderate and popular Republican in the state, was outspoken in calling Mr. Bolduc a conspiracy-theory extremist whom most voters did not take seriously.

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  • See Senate race ratings by Inside Elections
  • The background for the race is simple. Hassan won by 0.1 points in 2016. This year, Democrats spent money during the Republican primary to successfully get their preferred opponent, Don Bolduc, nominated. He has gone back and forth on whether President Joe Biden legitimately won the 2020 election.

    The early polling after the primary indicated that Hassan was a clear favorite to retain her seat. A super PAC aligned with GOP leader Mitch McConnell, went on to pull its advertising out of the race.

    But in the last 10 days, Senate Republicans campaign arm started putting money back in.

    What exactly is going on?

    A number of pollsters that dont meet CNNs standards for publication have put out results indicating a tight race, or even a Republican advantage. A close affair, though, matches with what the campaigns are seeing in the state.

    New Hampshire is exactly the type of seat you might expect Republicans to be competitive in, given the polling weve seen nationally. A CNN/SSRS poll published this week put Republicans ahead by four points on the generic congressional ballot. Thats an 8-point shift toward the Republicans from the final 2020 presidential result.

    Bolduc Wins New Hampshire Senate Primary Realizing Gop Fears

    Mainstream Republicans are worried that Don Bolduc, a 2020 election denier, is too right-wing to beat Senator Maggie Hassan in the general election.

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    By Trip Gabriel

    Don Bolduc, a retired Army general and 2020 election denier, has captured the Republican nomination for Senate in New Hampshire, according to The Associated Press.

    The race was called midday Wednesday, as Mr. Bolduc held a lead of more than 1,500 votes over Chuck Morse, the president of the State Senate.

    Mr. Morse was endorsed by Gov. Chris Sununu and helped by $4.5 million from national Republicans, who were worried that a victory by Mr. Bolduc would forfeit what they saw as a winnable seat in the quest for Senate control this fall.

    Mr. Bolducs victory will come as a relief to Democrats, who also assume he will be the weaker opponent against Senator Maggie Hassan, a first-term Democrat. She won in 2016 by about 1,000 votes in purple New Hampshire but has been saddled with low job approval numbers. Four states New Hampshire, Arizona, Georgia and Nevada have vulnerable Democratic senators the party is aggressively defending to keep its hold on the Senate.

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    Context Of The 2022 Elections

    New Hampshire Party Control: 1992-2022Four years of Democratic trifectas Eleven years of Republican trifectasScroll left and right on the table below to view more years.


    New Hampshire has a Republican trifecta. The Republican Party controls the office of governor and both chambers of the state legislature.

    Send An Outsider To Washington Dc

    2020 Primary

    Don Bolduc is not, nor will he ever be confused for, a career politician. During his 33 years of service in the Army Special Forces community, he commanded many of our nations most famous units during the Global War on Terror. He led one of the first groups into Afghanistan immediately following 9/11, riding in on horseback. His resume and accomplishments are unmatched by anyone competing in the race, both Republican and Democrat alike.

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    Don Bolduc Is On A New Mission

    We dont need more special-interest focused politicians in Washington. We need leaders who will put Granite Staters first. General Don Bolduc has spent his life serving and protecting this nation and now its his mission to take that same commitment to Washington. Hell fight the career politicians who are putting their own self-interest ahead of their constituents and that starts with getting Senator Maggie Hassan out of the U.S. Senate.

    United States Senate Election In New Hampshire 2020

    Date of New Hampshire presidential primary:

    Filing deadline: June 12, 2020
    Primary: September 8, 2020
    U.S. House elections, 2020Submit

    Bryant “Corky” Messner won the Republican primary for U.S. Senate in New Hampshire on September 8, 2020. He received 51% of the vote to Don Bolduc‘s 43%. Two other candidates ran.

    Messner served in the Army during the Cold War and was qualified as a ranger. He later founded the law firm Messner Reeves LLP. Bolduc served in the Army for more than 30 years and was a brigadier general.

    Messner was endorsed by President Donald Trump, Sen. Rand Paul , and the National Association for Gun Rights, among others. Sen. Tom Cotton , Rep. Michael Waltz , and the Senate Conservatives Fund were among Bolduc’s endorsers.

    Messner highlighted his USA Plan, which he said would bring manufacturing jobs to the country and state, keep small business taxes low, and limit government regulations.

    Bolduc said he would fight special interests in Washington. He also emphasized that he was from New Hampshire, while Messner had more recently moved to the state.

    See more on candidates’ backgrounds and key messages here.

    Through June 30, Messner had raised $4.3 million, including $3.9 million he loaned his campaign. Bolduc had raised $740,000.

    Also running were Gerard Beloin and Andy Martin.

    New Hampshire modified its primary election process as follows:

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    Ballotpedia’s Candidate Connection Survey Responses

    Ballotpedia asks all federal, state, and local candidates to complete a survey and share what motivates them on political and personal levels. The section below shows responses from candidates in this race who completed Ballotpedia’s Candidate Connection survey. Candidates are asked three required questions for this survey, but they may answer additional optional questions as well.

    Survey responses from candidates in this race

    Note: Ballotpedia reserves the right to edit Candidate Connection survey responses. Any edits made by Ballotpedia will be clearly marked with for the public. If the candidate disagrees with an edit, he or she may request the full removal of the survey response from Ballotpedia does not edit or correct typographical errors unless the candidate’s campaign requests it.

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    Satellite ads

    This section includes a selection of campaign advertisements released by satellite groups. If you are aware of other satellite ads that should be included, please .

    National Republican Senatorial Committee

    The National Republican Senatorial Committee spent $2.9 million opposing Hassan as of October 3. An NRSC ad is shown below.

    Restoration PAC launched an ad opposing Hassan on October 25. That ad is embedded below.

    Senate Majority PAC

    Fox News reported that Senate Majority PAC spent $3.7 million on a TV ad opposing Bolduc.

    How The Primary Works

    Don Bolduc Declares Victory In GOP New Hampshire Senate Primary

    A primary election is an election in which registered voters select a candidate that they believe should be a political party’s candidate for elected office to run in the general election. They are also used to choose convention delegates and party leaders. Primaries are state-level and local-level elections that take place prior to a general election. New Hampshire uses a semi-closed primary system. Unaffiliated voters may vote in the primary, but in order to do so, they have to choose a party before voting. This changes their status from unaffiliated to affiliated with that party unless they fill out a card to return to undeclared status.

    For information about which offices are nominated via primary election, see this article.

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    Republicans Look To Avert A Complicating Primary Result In New Hampshire

    Republicans are pouring money into next weeks GOP Senate primary in New Hampshire, fearing that the leading candidate could jeopardize their chances of unseating first-term Democratic Sen. Maggie Hassan.

    The prospect that Don Bolduc, a retired Army brigadier general who ran unsuccessfully for the Senate in 2020, could win Tuesdays contest has set off a frantic burst of Republican spending looking to boost Chuck Morse, the state Senate president. This spending spree highlights the GOP fear that New Hampshire once considered a top pickup opportunity before Gov. Chris Sununu passed on the race late last year could become the latest and final state where the party is beset with a complicated candidate that has shown little ability to raise money, giving Democrats an easier path to holding a seat.

    The evenly divided Senate puts pressure on every race this cycle. Republicans need to gain just one seat to flip the chamber, and amidst a shifting political environment, the stakes for each race are even higher, especially when GOP candidates across the country have struggled to raise money.

    Top Republicans harbor reservations about Bolduc, whom even people close to him describe as a loose cannon without much of a political organization or fundraising ability. He had raised less than $600,000 by August 24, compared to Hassans $31.4 million.

    Election Denier Bolduc Wins New Hampshire Gop Senate Race

    CONCORD, N.H. Retired Army Brig. Gen. Donald Bolduc won New Hampshires Senate Republican primary on Wednesday and will face potentially vulnerable Democratic incumbent Maggie Hassan in November setting up another test of whether a fierce conservative can appeal to more moderate general election voters.

    Bolduc wasnt formally endorsed by former President Donald Trump but has said he believes Trump won the 2020 election and has espoused conspiracy theories about vaccines. The former president called him a strong guy, tough guy.

    Two other pro-Trump candidates won their U.S. House primaries in New Hampshire Karoline Leavitt in the 1st Congressional District and Bob Burns in the 2nd Congressional District leaving some in the party questioning whether they will be able to broaden their appeal beyond the GOP base in November.

    Nice! The Trumpiest people ALL won in New Hampshire last night. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!!! Trump wrote on Truth Social on Wednesday.

    Primaries in New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Delaware on Tuesday capped the nations primary season just eight weeks before Election Day, when majorities in both chambers of Congress, key governorships and scores of important state offices will be up for grabs.

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    Bucking Gop Establishment Bolduc Triumphs In Nh Senate Primary Race

    This story was updated on Wednesday, Sept. 14 at 1:00 p.m.

    Army Gen. Don Bolduc has won the Republican primary for New Hampshire’s U.S. Senate race, bucking efforts by state and national GOP leaders to propel longtime state Sen. Chuck Morse to the nomination.

    In a , Morse thanked his supporters.

    The Associated Press made a final call in the race midday Wednesday. With 94% of votes counted by noon, Bolduc was ahead of Morse by less than 2,000 votes, or slightly more than 1% of the total votes cast.

    NHPR relies on the Associated Press for election results. You can find the most up-to-date results here.

    Bolduc will now face off against incumbent Democratic Sen. Maggie Hassan in New Hampshires closely watched race for U.S. Senate.

    Bolduc and Morse were locked in a tight battle for first place in the five-way race for the Republican nomination for much of Tuesday evening, mirroring the increasingly combative tone this primary campaign took on in its final weeks.

    After falling short in his 2020 U.S. Senate bid, the 60-year-old Bolduc rode a populist message throughout his campaign, fueled by dogged grassroots campaigning and contempt for the political establishment.

    Heading into the final stretch of the primary, Republican leaders in New Hampshire and Washington saw Morse a longtime leader in the State House who campaigned on his record as a budget expert and secured a last-minute endorsement from Gov. Chris Sununu as the better choice to defeat Hassan.

    Democratic Super Pac Spending

    Two New NHGOP Senators Share Their Visions for 2021 Session â InsideSources

    National Republicans are pouring in money for Bolduc because they know he will be a yes vote for a nationwide abortion ban and to end Social Security and Medicare, Hassan campaign spokeswoman Sydney Petersen said in an email. She added that the race is likely to come down to the wire because of the states closely divided electorate.

    Hassans campaign has spent more than $3 million on ads since the primary touting her independence, fiscal responsibility and support for police funding. Shes been aided by another $550,000 spent by the Senate Majority PAC a Democratic super PAC aligned with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer . SMP said it expects the race to remain competitive and is spending $3.7 million on an ad buy targeting Bolduc on abortion rights and painting him as an extremist.

    McConnells own super PAC even burned through millions of dollars to say Don Bolducs crazy ideas made him unelectable, J.B. Poersch, president of SMP, said in an email, pointing to the pre-primary ad spending

    The Democratic super PAC has reserved nearly $9 million worth of advertising for the full campaign, according to AdImpact data. That would add to the Hassan campaigns planned total spending of nearly $24 million.

    To contact the reporter on this story: Kenneth P. Doyle in Washington at

    To contact the editors responsible for this story: Angela Greiling Keane at Loren Duggan at

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    Hes Not A Serious Candidate

    The first blow to Republicans in New Hampshire came in November of 2021 when Sununu declined to run for Senate, a decision that came after months of recruitment from top Republicans and dealt a blow to the partys outlook on defeating Hassan.

    With Sununu out of the picture and more high-profile candidates like former Sen. Kelly Ayotte also passing, the primary became a wide-open and contentious affair, with nearly a dozen Republicans running. The uncertainty somewhat froze GOP efforts to pick a winner in the race, allowing Bolduc to use his base of voters from his 2020 primary bid to become the favorite in the contest, much to the chagrin of other Republicans.

    Hes not a serious candidate. Hes really not, Sununu told WGIR in August. If he were the nominee, I have no doubt we would have a much harder time trying to win that seat back. So, I dont take him seriously as a candidate. I dont think most people do.

    Bolduc has made Sununu one of his top targets throughout his run. Although he has walked back some of his rhetoric about the governor, he baselessly claimed in 2021 that Sununu was a communist sympathizer and that the governors family which has been in New Hampshire politics for decades supports terrorism.

    Sununu has Bolduc kind of a conspiracy theorist-type and declined to endorse him.

    Rick Wiley, a Bolduc consultant, pushed back on the narrative that the retired general cant defeat Hassan.

    Primaries In New Hampshire

    A primary election is an election in which registered voters select a candidate that they believe should be a political party’s candidate for elected office to run in the general election. They are also used to choose convention delegates and party leaders. Primaries are state-level and local-level elections that take place prior to a general election. New Hampshire uses a semi-closed primary system. Unaffiliated voters may vote in the primary, but in order to do so, they have to choose a party before voting. This changes their status from unaffiliated to affiliated with that party unless they fill out a card to return to undeclared status.

    For information about which offices are nominated via primary election, see this article.

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    A General From Central Casting

    Bolduc is not the most polished speaker, but hes a skilled politician. When he arrives at his events, he tries to shake everyones hand and hugs anyone with a familiar face. When he sees other veterans, he thanks them for their service they thank him for his. He tries to find out if there are any kids in the room so that when he later quotes the preamble to the Constitution in his stump speech, he has someone to point his finger to when he says the word posterity.

    Put aside his litany of lies and Bolduc is undeniably charming. He has the look of a general out of a made-for-TV war movie, and he has cheesy lines to go with it: I have a mission statement that I believe if I follow will allow me to do the right thing for you every single day, and it goes like this, he told a crowd at a bar in Hooksett. We the people, in order to form a more perfect union . . . And on he goes with the preamble, pointing to a little girl at the end.

    In the Republican primary, Democrats decided to play with fire and spent millions of dollars trying to prop Bolduc up by attacking his main opponent, and Bolduc went on to win by less than two points. They clearly thought that he was the easiest Republican candidate for Hassan to beat. But if you go to his events, you can see that the Democrats made a mistake.

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