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Guinta and Ashooh’s Friend, Jerry DeLemus Expected To Plead Guilty To Federal Charges

Rochester, NH–  Jerry DeLemus, Trump’s Veteran’s Coalition co-chair, who is praised and admired by both NH-01 Republican Congressional Candidates Rich Ashooh and Frank Guinta, is expected to plead guilty next week to federal charges stemming from his role as “Sheriff” in the standoff at Cliven Bundy’s Nevada ranch in 2014.  

Republican Congressional Candidate Rich Ashooh has said nothing. Perhaps he is hoping that nobody knows how much he admired Jerry DeLemus, even though he knew him to be an extremist who started a Glen Beck 9/12 chapter in NH, was a birther, and supported extreme right wing positions. In spite of that, Rich Ashooh was a guest at an event for a PAC that Delemus headed, and in a speech there, called Jerry DeLemus “the fist of liberty.” 

Republican Congressional Candidate Frank Guinta defended his good friend.  In a letter that DeLemus’s attorney submitted to the court, Guinta wrote: “(I) have found [DeLemus] to be a man of strong passions with a thirst for freedom.”  

Naomi Andrews, spokeswoman for former Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter released the following statement:  “NH-01 Republican Congressional Candidates Frank Guinta and Rich Ashooh’s support and open approval of so many of Jerry DeLemus’s actions and hateful statements, coupled with their support for Donald Trump and silence on Trump’s actions and hateful statements, prove they lack judgment and moral courage, and do not represent New Hampshire values.”

 

AFT NH Endorses Carol Shea-Porter for Congress

 Shea-Porter a Proven Leader, Best Suited to Represent Working Families

New Hampshire—Today, AFT New Hampshire announced its endorsement of former Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter for election to Congress from New Hampshire’s First District.

“This fall’s election presents Granite Staters with a clear choice—the same old gridlock and leadership failures in DC, or a proven leader with a history of producing results for the First District’s working families,” said AFT NH President Doug Ley. “That proven leader is Carol Shea-Porter, and AFT NH is proud to endorse her for Congress. Carol listens and understands that negative politics like we have seen in Washington and right here in our state is not the NH way.”

“Carol Shea-Porter is the candidate in this race best suited to represent the interests of middle class families and our teachers, para-educators, police officers and all of our members who serve the public,” Ley continued. “Frank Guinta would rather kowtow to special interests than fight for the jobs and priorities working families in the Granite State need and deserve. But Carol understands the importance of supporting public education, affordable healthcare, and real job creation measures as our economy continues to grow.

“Carol Shea-Porter shares our deep commitment to supporting the middle class and ensuring everyone has an opportunity to achieve the American dream, and we are pleased to support her election this fall.”

“I am very honored to once again be endorsed by the American Federation of Teachers –NH,” said former Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter.   “I graduated from a NH public high school and from the University of New Hampshire, and I know how committed AFT-NH members—teachers, school support staff, police, higher education faculty and town employees- are to serving the people of this state. I share their commitment to Granite State families, and I will bring my New Hampshire values of hard work and honesty back to Washington.” 


“AFT-NH is the State Affiliate of the American Federation of Teachers. The AFT has over one million members with nearly 4,000 members here in New Hampshire.   These members are teachers, school support staff, police, higher education faculty and town employees. AFT-NH is a member of the New Hampshire AFL-CIO which represents over 45,000 working men and women.”

GOP Candidates For NH’s First District Remain Silent After Trump’s Shocking Attack On Khan’s

Guinta and Ashooh silent on Military Gold Star Mothers, proving their political ambitions trump compassion

Rochester, NH— Both Frank Guinta and Rich Ashooh have remained silent about Donald Trump’s cruel comments attacking Gold Star mother Ghazala Khan. Ms. Khan stood by her husband Khizr Khan at the Democratic convention when he talked about their son, Humayun, who sacrificed his life to save others during an attack in Iraq. On Saturday, Trump declared, “Look at his wife, she was standing there. She has nothing to say. She probably, maybe she wasn’t allowed to have anything to say.” Trump added that he sacrificed also.

Various veterans groups, including the Veterans of Foreign Wars, have spoken out against Trump’s comments. The organization VoteVets released a letter signed by the families of twenty-three fallen service members who said:

“We are all Gold Star Families, who have lost those we love the most in war. Ours is a sacrifice you will never know. Ours is a sacrifice we would never want you to know.

Your recent comments regarding the Khan family were repugnant, and personally offensive to us. When you question a mother’s pain, by implying that her religion, not her grief, kept her from addressing an arena of people, you are attacking us.”

In response to Ashooh’s and Guinta’s silence, Carol Shea-Porter released the following statement. 

“My husband grew up on military bases, and served himself. He and I saw many people carrying the wounds of war when he was in the Army. I am stunned that Mr. Guinta and Mr. Ashooh won’t defend Gold Star families and the military.”

Guinta Lies About Opposing The TPP In New Campaign Video

Guinta deceives voters on TPP position after casting deciding vote to give President Obama power to fast-track TPP

Rochester, NH— This morning, in a new campaign video his campaign released. Congressman Frank Guinta again deceived voters, this time about his position on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

Based on his past support for TPP, this is just another dishonest political stunt to distract from his campaign financing scandal.  Frank Guinta has actually been very supportive of TPP, writing to President Obama to urge him to move it forward. Here is a report from WGBH:

Only one New Englander has declared support for the bill, according to The Hill: New Hampshire Republican Frank Guinta. Guinta signed onto a public letter with other freshman Republicans in support of the measure.”

Frank Guinta signed a letter to President Obama that promoted TPP and the passage of TPA (Trade Promotion Authority).  Guinta’s letter said,  “Swift action early this year on TPA would pave the way for sustained economic growth and job creation.  We … look forward to working with you to pass TPA early this year.”

Congressman Guinta cast the deciding vote for fast track for TPP, which gave President Obama sole authority to negotiate and forced Congress to only be allowed to vote “Yes” or “No” on the whole package, with no opportunity to amend. 

In response to Guinta’s deception, Carol Shea-Porter released the following statement:

“While Frank Guinta deceives voters in whatever way he thinks will save his campaign, I have always been steadfast in my opposition to both TPA and TPP. I do believe in trade, but it needs to be fair trade. The TPP does not meet that standard. The TPA took away legislators’ ability to impact or change anything in the trade agreement, which I believe gives too much power to the Executive Branch.”

Shawn O’Connor’s Campaign Filing And Caucus Announcement Shocks Democrats

Just in case you did not hear the news this weekend, Shawn O’Connor has filed his candidacy for US Congress to represent New Hampshire’s 1st Congressional District.

However to the surprise of many, O’Connor filed to run as an Independent.

O’Connor was first out of the gate to announce his candidacy for Congress. He announced his run as the first Democrat to challenge Congressman Frank Guinta in March of 2015.

He made his announcement to run as an Independent on WMUR’s Close Up, that aired over the weekend adding that he will caucus with whoever is in power when he gets elected. This means he will caucus with Republicans or Democrats.

O’Connor, who said he was “proud to” endorse Senator Sanders campaign for President also stated that he was “firmly in the Sanders – Elizabeth Warren camp of the Democratic Party.”

If O’Connor really was firm believer “in the Sanders – Warren camp of the Democratic Party” why would he ever say he would caucus with the Republicans? The answer is simple. O’Connor does not care about either party. He is trying to buy his way into power by buying a seat in Congress.

Oconnor approval ratingsO’Connor claims that polling supports his campaign for Congress even though polling from UNH in April shows that 86% people “don’t know enough about him” and that his favorability actually went down from previous months.

Just as O’Connor made outrageous claims that Carol Shea-Porter was spreading a whisper campaign against him. Now he is claiming that the New Hampshire Democratic Party is blocking his campaign by not allowing him to speak at their upcoming convention. I guess when you threaten them with lawsuits they tend not to want to invite you to their party.

The fact is that O’Connor is a carpetbagger who moved to New Hampshire from New York City a few years ago with the sole purpose of running for Congress. He has donated a million dollars to his own campaign to buy his seat in Congress.

He is a greedy, power hungry opportunist evident by the fact that he probably knows he will lose the primary to Carol Shea-Porter so he is now running as an Independent. An Independent who stated he will caucus with whoever is in power to get better (more powerful) committee positions and assignments.

O’Connor has completely gone off the rails and as every day that goes by his entire campaign shows that he is only interested in one thing, buying his way into Congress.

Carol Shea-Porter Files For Congress, Connects GOP Opponents To Trump’s Racist Remarks

Carol Shea Porter Filing 2016

Concord, New Hampshire–  Today, former Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter, joined by her husband and supporters, filed as a candidate for Congress in the First Congressional District.  She released the following statement.

“I am running for the United States House of Representatives. During my three terms serving the good people of New Hampshire’s First District, I always worked for all of our citizens, and I never forgot that public office is a public trust.

I have spent all of my working life serving others, and in Congress, I was proud to pass legislation to help active duty soldiers and veterans, small business, working men and women, senior citizens, and students.

But we still have many challenges. Congress needs to pass policies that will strengthen the economy, help America’s small businesses to grow, and help manufacturers to compete and keep jobs here by making products in America. We need to raise the minimum wage, support our schools, and make college affordable again. Families need quality child care and family friendly polices, and this country needs to address our health challenges, including addiction, mental illness, and other pressing problems. Congress needs to protect Social Security and Medicare and other programs that our most vulnerable rely on, and we all need clean air and water and a safe environment. And as we work on all of this, we also need laws that honor and respect all of our people and provide equal protection.

I am ready to return to Congress to work on these challenges. And once again, I am refusing corporate PAC and DC lobbyist money, because I believe we need to get the money out of politics. I have supported and will continue to advocate for a Constitutional Amendment to help do that.

As I have said, my parents worked hard and achieved the American dream and so have I. I am running again because I believe we must keep America the land of opportunity and fairness for your family and mine.”

Shea-Porter took no time in connecting her Republican opponents to the racist Republican nominee Donald Trump saying that their silence shows “tacit approval and moral failure.”

In a recent press release the Shea-Porter campaign said:

It is now too late for Republican NH-01 Congressional candidates Rich Ashooh and Frank Guinta to pretend that they have moral principles that trump politics. They have a racist Presidential candidate who has been spewing hate everywhere against so many people, and they are either cowering in fear, unwilling to follow other Republicans who have spoken out, or they agree with Trump. We don’t know, because both men refuse to say, but New Hampshire knows they have failed a critical test of moral leadership, and it is now too late to fake outrage at these hateful outbursts. 

Rich Ashooh, who recently claimed to NH1 that he believed principles matter more than party, says he will support the presidential nominee, and refuses to denounce Trump’s racist comments. Perhaps he should read Thomas Friedman’s essay calling him and others out: “And we know just how little they are attached to any principles, …being so willing to throw their support behind a presidential candidate whom they know is utterly ignorant of policy, has done no homework, has engaged in racist attacks on a sitting judge, has mocked a disabled reporter, has impugned an entire religious community, and has tossed off ignorant proposals for walls, for letting allies go it alone and go nuclear and for overturning trade treaties, rules of war and nuclear agreements in ways that would be wildly destabilizing if he took office.” 

When it comes to Frank Guinta…well, New Hampshire already knows about his principles. He’s all in for Trump.

Naomi Andrews, spokeswoman for former Congresswoman and 2016 Candidate Carol Shea-Porter, said: “Throughout the campaign, Donald Trump has made abhorrent comments that do not reflect New Hampshire values. Frank Guinta and Rich Ashooh have remained silent on Trump’s ugly, racist attacks, which denotes tacit approval. It is too late for them to pretend they have moral principles that trump politics. Since they wouldn’t tell Trump to stop his attacks on those with disabilities, on people’s religion, on their race or ethnic background, on women or other groups he tries to bully, NH citizens now know that they would not be able to count on either of them to show moral leadership in Congress.”

Public School Champion, Carol Shea-Porter, Receives Endorsement From NEA-NH

Today, NEA-New Hampshire announced their recommendation of Carol Shea-Porter for the 1st Congressional District race.

Rochester, NH—NEA-NH, the largest public employee union in New Hampshire, representing 17,000 educators, has endorsed Carol Shea-Porter for re-election to Congress in New Hampshire’s First District.

“We’re supporting Shea-Porter because she is a tireless defender of public education,” said Scott McGilvray, NEA-New Hampshire President. 

“What matters now is that we elect leaders who will stand up for students, educators and working families. We need leaders who will support public education and public school students,” continued McGilvray. “We must elect leaders like Shea-Porter who share our vision for the future and who will help protect our right as working Americans to have a voice in our workplace. 

During her last term in office (2013-14), Shea-Porter advocated for the passage of the Strong Start for America’s Children Act and denounced the GOP budget cuts to the federal Head Start program.  

In 2013, Shea-Porter co-sponsored the REPAY Supplies Act,” that provides tax deductions to teacher who purchase supplies for their classrooms. The Classroom Expense Deduction allows teachers who pay out of their own pockets for classroom supplies like books, software, and rulers, to claim a $250 above-the-line deduction on their tax returns. The bipartisan Reimburse Educators who Pay for Academic Year (REPAY) Supplies Act of 2013 would have permanently extend the Classroom Expense Deduction. 

In 2014, Shea-Porter was recognized for her work advocating to children by the Campaign for Children, naming her a “2014 defender of children.

Every child in New Hampshire, from a Head Start toddler to a graduating high school senior, deserves a first-class education. In New Hampshire’s first district, we need a leader who will fight for public education. It is a top priority that we work together to support our teachers and students. That is why I am proud to have again earned the endorsement of NEA-New Hampshire,” said Shea-Porter.

Guinta Signs Norquist’s Anti-Tax Pledge Showing His True TEA Party Allegiance

Guinta 2010 - 2 (Image by Jason Meserve)

Guinta 2010 – 2 (Image by Jason Meserve)

Guinta once again signs Washington Lobbyist Grover Norquist’s Pledge.
What will Ashooh do-sign it for a second time or stand up for Granite Staters?
  

Rochester, New Hampshire – Yesterday, Frank Guinta once again surrendered New Hampshire citizens’ rights to representation by signing Washington lobbyist Grover Norquist’s tax pledge.

CBS News had this to say about Norquist: “He is not a member of Congress, nor the holder of any public office. He’s a lobbyist and a conservative activist named Grover Norquist, who over the years has gotten virtually every Republican congressman and Senator to sign an oath called, “The Pledge.”

Mr. Norquist claims the federal government does nothing good with our money, and it should be shrunk to the size that it “could be drowned in the bathtub.” It’s laughable since Mr. Guinta has been on a government payroll for most of his career.

Mr. Ashooh has also received his paycheck from tax-payer money for most of his career. He was on the federal government payroll as a staffer for right wing Senator Gordon Humphrey, and then for former Senator Warren Rudman.  Mr. Ashooh then lobbied Congress for federal dollars for defense contracts, so he clearly understands that the federal government has a responsibility for security and also creates jobs. Does Ashooh also want to destroy the federal government and end jobs for the people it employs?

Mr. Ashooh is a tea partier who has said he would join the Tea Party Caucus if elected. Now, NH voters want to know if he will sign allegiance again to Norquist.

Naomi Andrews, spokeswoman for former Congresswoman and 2016 Candidate Carol Shea-Porter, said,  “Tea Partier Frank Guinta’s re-signing the Norquist pledge is no surprise. His Republican opponent, Mr. Ashooh,  who has also signed the pledge before and has said he would join the Tea Party Caucus, can’t stay silent. He needs to say if he will once again bow to Washington lobbyist Norquist and surrender NH citizens’ rights to representation.  New Hampshire voters deserve an answer—what will Ashooh do?”

The NHDP Fires Back At The O’Connor Campaign, O’Connor Responds With More Accusations

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

Guest Editorial: Why Shawn O’Connor is a Liability to Democrats

 

Written by Charlie “Chaz” Proulx

Since moving to Bedford from New York a few years ago, Shawn O’Connor has gone from doing next to nothing to help NH Democrats to becoming a major liability.

A short history:

On November 24, 2014 James Pindell wrote this about Shawn O’Connor’s preparations to run for the US senate against Kelly Ayotte. “Shawn O’Connor moved from New York City to Bedford last year and has not been particularly active in local Democratic politics. He has not given money to any federal candidates…according to the Federal Election website. Though a day before the Nov. 4 election, he did give $1,000. each to the Manchester Democratic Committee and to Executive Councilor Chris Pappas.”

Two thousand dollars isn’t very much for the founder and former president of Stratus Prep. According to O’Connor, “I sold the business for a ten figure valuation to a private equity firm.” Ten figures is a billion dollars.

It’s to his credit that he made so much money so young. But really–two thousand dollars? And beyond money, there are plenty of other things New Hampshire Democrats do to help keep the party strong. Shawn did none of them.

Most NH Democrats get active in one way or another and start making like-minded friends. New Hampshire is a small state where networking is very personal. But when I heard that Shawn O’Connor was running for Congress in the first district neither I nor anyone I knew in politics knew anything about him. Soon enough he claimed to have hired the Berenson Strategy Group and other ultra heavy hitters from outside NH to shape his image.

Creating an image for Mr. O’Connor had to be a challenge because a few years ago he was touting the “Third Way” movement in Forbes magazine. He singled out Democrats for wanting to raise taxes.

Somehow O’Connor then pivoted to become a Bernie Sanders supporter. Strange, because last summer his publicized political issues list never mentioned income equality. I saw him speak three times and there was no mention of Bernie Sanders either.

Now he’s all in with all the Bernie trappings. A recent O’Connor television ad co-opted Sanders “Join the Revolution” slogan. That’s a long way from Steve Forbes rag and anti tax rhetoric.

We all have epiphanies, but I suspect that Mr. O’Connor and his handlers watched Sanders pre-primary numbers and saw an opportunity to differentiate himself from Jeanne Shaheen, Carol Shea’Porter and Maggie Hassan — all of whom endorsed Hillary Clinton.

An early hint of mild negativity was to lump Maggie, Carol and Jeanne together as “establishment.” Shortly thereafter O’Connor press releases began reeking of a holier-than-thou attitude towards Shea-Porter. He attacked Carol’s character over accepting Union Pac money. He failed to mention that when Carol won her first primary the campaign had $19,000, then refused DCCC money and still managed to beat Jeb Bradley.

That win had everything to do with the networks of friend and activists I mentioned above. It was a true grass roots effort — one of the biggest upsets in NH political history. CSP had spent less than any other winning candidate for Congress in the entire US.

Then of course came the threats to sue Carol Shea-Porter. Before the threats hit the papers, O’Connor was lawyered up and pressuring leaders of the NHDP to “mediate” between him and Carol Shea-Porter. What a crazy – assed stunt when true Democrats are focused on a Presidential election year.

Turmoil followed. In the media Mr. O’Connor’s dragged State Sen. David Pierce into the mix. Sen. Pierce had endorsed Mr. O’Connor, but he found himself defending Mr. O’Connors over-the-top allegations of a “defamatory whisper campaign” against him. O’Connor has since called the “whisper campaign” part of a “broad conspiracy” perpetrated by Carol Shea-Porter. (My take is that at the very worst, somebody “misspoke” to Senator Pierce then “walked the statement back” a few days later.) I met David Pierce when he first moved to NH and respect him a lot. I can’t imagine that any of this was comfortable for him.

Next O’Connor told the press that members of Bernie Sanders campaign would corroborate his “whisper campaign” story. Two major staffers names were splashed across the press and local television. Both denied O’Connor’s allegations.

The Sanders Campaign didn’t need these distractions, but needy Shawn did.

And then there’s Twitter. Mr. O’Connor ties anyone who doesn’t agree with him to CSP campaign. People who have never had anything to do with CSP are called CSP hacks.

And if he doesn’t like what you write he’ll just make up something about you. Actually he’ll lie about you. Openly Gay, he has Tweeted that I’m Anti LBTG anti Domestic Survivor.” People who know me know that’s a lie, but his supporters probably believe I’m a bigot.

America Rising (Republican opposition research pac) is now attacking Shea Porter based on Shawn’s meme. Does Shawn understand that he’s tossing red-meat to the GOP?

I have no idea what motivates Mr. O’Connor but his all-about-Shawn act is wearing thinner every day.

 


Related Reading: The NHDP Fires Back At The O’Connor Campaign, O’Connor Responds With More Accusations

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