The plot thickens.
The New Hampshire Democratic Party is now squarely in the middle of the potential lawsuit bonanza from the Shawn O’Connor campaign.
First it was a lawsuit against Carol Shea-Porter where he alleged she is running a “whisper campaign” against him. He release multiple statements accusing Shea-Porter but all of the people who came forward in support of O’Connor all confirmed hearing rumors but none could connect it to the Shea-Porter campaign.
Apparently he also tried to use the same tactics to attack the NH Democratic Party and Chairman Buckley for not intervening. Today Attorney William Christie representing the NHDP responded to those claims.
“Over the past two weeks Congressional Candidate Shawn O’Connor has made public statements regarding his opponent in the Democratic Primary for New Hampshire’s First Congressional District. Among other things, Mr. O’Connor has told the public he asked the New Hampshire Democratic Party (“NHDP”) to mediate a resolution to the allegations he has raised. This characterization of Mr. O’Connor’s communications with NHDP is inaccurate.
In early March 2016, Mr. O’Connor threatened to file a lawsuit against NHDP citing vague allegations that he had been defamed by NHDP employees. Despite several requests by NHDP, Mr. O’Connor refused to provide any specifics regarding his complaints. Throughout the process, Mr. O’Connor has made inappropriate and troubling demands including a suggestion that NHDP or some other third party should pay Mr. O’Connor money to withdraw from the congressional race.
NHDP has refused to respond to these demands. Mr. O’Connor has now renewed his threat to sue NHDP. If Mr. O’Connor files suit, NHDP will reply in the proper forum and we fully anticipate this controversy will be resolved in NHDP’s favor.”
After this statement was released by the NHDP, O’Connor quickly released his own statement, full of more outrageous accusations, claiming all of the allegations from the NHDP are false.
“I was dismayed by the spurious and completely false allegations made against me by Attorney Bob Christie of Shaheen & Gordon in a statement released today by the New Hampshire Democratic Party,” said O’Connor.
As O’Connor did in previous statements, he included a rundown of accusations but fails to include any specifics like, who was spreading these rumors about him, just more nameless accusations.
On February 19, 2016, I contacted NHDP Chairman Buckley with a list of 10 detailed, demonstrably false allegations that had been disseminated by NHDP staffers and members of Carol Shea-Porter’s campaign team and asked Chairman Buckley to help end the dissemination of these untruthful statements…
On March 2, 2016, my attorney sent a detailed, 8-page letter to Chairman Buckley, the New Hampshire Democratic Party, Carol Shea-Porter and the Shea-Porter campaign outlining, again, in great detail the numerous false allegations being spread by NHDP staffers and the Shea-Porter campaign…
(At time of publication I contacted the O’Connor campaign requesting copies of the above letters and received no response.)
Again he reiterates his plan to sue the NHDP while affirming that he can back up his statement but will not release that information until the “appropriate time.”
…We consider Mr. Christie’s accusations on behalf of the NHDP today defamation per se and will pursue our legal rights against the party. We have substantial correspondence and documentation supporting this and all the other statements made in this release which we will make public at the appropriate time.
Lastly he is accusing the NHDP of “taking sides” in the primary by refusing to get involved in this He-said She-said dispute between O’Connor and Shea-Porter.
Finally, we have long contested that the NHDP has been violating Section E(1), specifically Subsections E(1)(j) and E(1)(h) of the state party’s constitution (on which I relied in entering the party’s primary). These sections of the party constitution require that the NHDP remain neutral in party primaries. Today’s completely unprovoked attack on me serves as further proof that the party is supporting Ms. Shea-Porter and violating its own constitution. This is both undemocratic and un-Democratic.”
Just to clarify (and I am not a lawyer) but this statement says that the NH Democratic Party’s attorney is protecting the NHDP and it’s Chair, Ray Buckley. Nothing in their statement says they are defending Carol Shea-Porter. Furthermore, they are trying to stay out of this entire outrageous dispute being pushed by Shawn O’Connor and are therefor trying to stay completely neutral. Forcing them to defend you, Mr O’Connor, would mean they have taken sides as well.
I guess Mr. O’Connor is finding it hard than he thought it would be to move to NH and buy himself a Congressional seat, so he is going to sue his opponents until there is nobody left to run against him.
The NH Union Leader also covered this story but did not include O’Connor’s statement.
Related Reading: Guest Editorial: Why Shawn O’Connor is a Liability to Democrats