Being the “First in the Nation” primary state many people consider politics to be New Hampshire’s unofficial sport. Granite Staters are well-informed when it comes to candidates. I myself like to listen to both sides before I make a decision on who I will vote for. This is why New Hampshire has so many registered “Independent” voters. However at a local Romney Ryan campaign stop New Hampshire voters were turned away in favor of busloads of Massachusetts residents.
Like many of the campaign stops in the Granite State, candidates like to give away tickets to the event. They usually send you to their website to register, and hope you will also “support” their campaign at the same time. This was no different for the Romney Ryan campaign.
The Republican Presidential campaign issued tickets online to New Hampshire voters, then sent an email late last night cancelling tickets for New Hampshire voters less than 12 hours before the event began. The following is a copy of an email received by one local voter around 11:00 pm last night:
From: “Eventbrite” <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: August 19, 2012 11:14:59 PM EDT
Subject: Order CANCELED for Victory Town Hall with Mitt Romney Paul Ryan and the GOP Team
The most appalling part of this email was that right now is that the cancellation message was that it appears that it was only sent to registered Democrats. A well-known Occupy NH member, and registered undeclared voter, gained entry without problem.
Some Granite Staters had not seen the campaign email before departing for the event this morning, and were notified of the cancellation only after waiting in line and presenting their printed tickets at the event door around 8:00 a.m. Romney staff promptly escorted blackballed individuals offsite; meanwhile several buses bearing Massachusetts license plates were seen unloading passengers at the event location.
“I woke up this morning excited to participate in the Romney event, only to find that I had an email from the Romney staff rescinding my ticket,” said Mark King of Nashua. “I am disappointed that I couldn’t participate in the democratic process.”
So as Nashua resident Mark King was being escorted off the premises, busloads of Massachusetts residents filled the venue in Goffstown. There are always accusations from the NH GOP that the NH Democratic Party are busing in people from Massachusetts. “Republicans charge that we bring in folks from out-of-state, but today I saw Massachusetts plate after Massachusetts plate,” said Eva Castillo, a local Manchester volunteer and activist. “They couldn’t fill their rally with local people so they bused them in from out-of-state.”
At a time when people are screaming that our democratic process is broken, the Romney Ryan campaign turned away people who wanted to keep an open mind and hear what all of the candidates had to say. “I got a ticket for myself, my husband and my son,” said Eileen Lee of Goffstown. “I got an email this morning that cancelled my ticket. I was disappointed. I like to hear what both sides have to say. It’s not the election yet, and I would have liked to hear what Paul Ryan had to say. Isn’t this a town meeting forum?”
Isn’t the goal of an election to take voters away from your opponent in order to win the election. New Hampshire is dubbed as a swing state because of the fact that it could go either way this November. It is unfortunate to see that the Romney Ryan campaign is already playing partisan politics before they are even elected. After this who will really believe that Romney and Ryan are really willing to sit down with the other side to discuss and work out the issues. If this is any indication of how they will be as President (and VP) then we would be in for four years of “My Way Or The Highway” from President Romney.