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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

Disgusting Actions By Shawn O’Connor’s Campaign Facebook Page

O’Connor Campaign Leaves Comments About A “Punchable Face” On Facebook Post Chastising Shea-Porter For Rumors That He Is A Perpetrator Of Domestic Violence.

This time the Shawn O’Connor campaign has gone to far.

First, O’Connor went to every media outlet in the state pushing this idea that Carol Shea-Porter started a “whisper campaign” against him. He claimed that the Shea-Porter’s campaign, or close friends of hers, started a rumor that he was a “perpetrator of domestic violence,” when he was actually the victim of domestic violence.

Since making these claims multiple news agencies have reported on this and none have connected any of these rumors to the Shea-Porter or any of her campaign staff. Most of the reporting proved that rumors were floating around but could not confirm who started these rumors. All of the people interviewed said that they did not know if Shea-Porter or her campaign was directly involved.

All week the O’Connor campaign has been pushing these stories and talking about how he is the victim of domestic abuse. For example on Wednesday O’Connor posted this update with a link to the NH1 story.

Screen shot at 1138pm 4-16-16

Screen shot at 1138pm 4-16-16

He calls on Shea-Porter to “immediately apologize to me and the millions of other LGBT and domestic abuse survivors whom she has offended with her dirty politics.”

This is a bold statement from the survivor of domestic abuse. Some people cannot talk about their own personal experiences with abuse.

However, the first comment on the Facebook post is by Pete Smith who said, “She has a very punchable face.” This type of commentary implies that if someone were to punch her, it would be acceptable because she has a “punchable face.” This is like blaming the victim for the assault because you know she had it coming.

Screen shot at 1138pm 4-16-16

Screen shot at 1138pm 4-16-16

While people are free to say whatever they want, as the page owner, O’Connor has the right to censor those comments that are completely inappropriate, like this one.

But he did not remove that comment.

Instead he removed the comment by Kathy Cavallaro who called O’Connor out for not removing the post about a “punchable face” but removed other posts that countered his claims against Shea-Porter.

O’Connor responded to Cavallaro by saying:

“As a survivor of domestic violence who was seriously injured, I condemn violence in any form. Our page has clear guidelines on what is deleted…”

Screen shot at 1138pm 4-16-16

Screen shot at 1138pm 4-16-16

So why did he not delete the comment that Shea-Porter as a “punchable face?”

Why didn’t he at least publicly chastise the person for making such an outrageous comment on his Facebook page?

Screen shot at 6pm 4-17-16

Screen shot at 6pm 4-17-16

Why is it still there? 

As of 6pm today the O’Connor campaign had removed all reference to Cavallaro’s commentary and the Pete Smith “punchable face” comment still remains.

The O’Connor campaign should immediately remove the comment from Pete Smith and apologize for not removing it before when they clearly knew about it.

As page administrator myself I understand that people say things that we have no control over, but my job it to remove those comments as soon as possible or as soon as they are brought to my attention. Considering that most of his posts do not even receive any comments it should have been very easy for him to see catch this completely inappropriate comment from Pete Smith and remove it.

Hopefully he will do the right thing now.

 


UPDATE

The offensive post has been removed at 8:30 pm.


 

UPDATE

After multiple people commented on O’Connor’s facebook page and tweeted at him, he did remove the offensive comment. He also removed all of the other comments as well.  First he responded on twitter by saying that he removed the offensive tweet as soon as it was brought to his attention.  If that were true, this post would have never existed.  It was not until the NH Labor News, and fellow Granite State blogger Susan Bruce (Read her post here), started calling him out did he do anything. Even then it took a little time.

Then he sent this tweet:

Oconnor tweet

He is now accusing me and everyone who called him out for not removing an offensive comment, after deleting comments from people who highlighted the offensive comment, as working for Team Shea-Porter. All I asked for was a removal of the offensive comment and an apology for the oversight. Instead he attacks me and all of the people who took the time out to highlight how offensive the comment is and that it should have been removed.

People quickly responded to him on twitter and called him out for lying.  I do not expect this story to go on anymore, however I expect more to come of his dirty New York style politics.

Now he is making more outrageous claims that Shea-Porter is anti-LGBT.

Screen shot

The Daily Kos Comments On O’Connor, Shea-Porter Controversy

The local media has touched on this potential lawsuit of an alleged “whisper campaign” by former Rep. Carol Shea-Porter. Her primary opponent, Shawn O’Connor, a New York businessman who moved to New Hampshire a few years ago to build momentum for a U.S. Senate run (since changed to run for US House), is accusing her of telling people that he is a “perpetrator of domestic violence.”  (Read our full story on this.) The truth is that O’Connor is a the victim of domestic violence, a fact he made public only a few months ago at a local Democratic Party picnic.

Yesterday, it appears that more national media outlets are looking into this story as well.  The Daily Kos’s daily election update posted this blurb on the NH District 1 race:

NH-01: Blargh. What an ugly mess that Democrats don’t need. Self-funding businessman Shawn O’Connor says he’s going to sue his primary opponent, ex-Rep. Carol Shea-Porter, for defamation, claiming that she’s accused him of domestic abuse through a “whispering campaign.” Shea-Porter has denied the allegations, calling them “bizarre” and “untruthful.” O’Connor, meanwhile, says that he was the victim of domestic abuse, and a Democratic state senator who endorsed him, David Pierce, claims a Shea-Porter confidante had pushed the O’Connor-as-abuser charge on him.

But Pierce wouldn’t name names, and he admitted he didn’t even know whether this unnamed, supposed rumor-monger was on Shea-Porter’s paid staff, or whether Shea-Porter herself even had anything to do with the alleged matter. O’Connor is demanding Shea-Porter apologize; if she doesn’t, he says he’ll file a lawsuit in the “coming weeks.” No matter what he thinks, though, this is not a winning move: Few primaries are won in court.

These are serious accusations and have yet to be fully proven.  The Shea-Porter campaign vehemently denies these claims. The O’Connor campaign released a statement from State Senator David Pierce that claims a member of Shea-Porter’s “inner circle” pushed this rumor on him, though Pierce admitted he does not know if the person in question works for Shea-Porter’s campaign or if Shea-Porter has any knowledge of the rumor being spread.

I think that the Daily Kos nailed it by saying, “No matter what he thinks, though, this is not a winning move: Few primaries are won in court.” 

Is Carol Shea-Porter Really Attacking Shawn O’Connor As A ‘Perpetrator Of Domestic Violence’?

The Democratic Primary for NH’s First Congressional District just took a very nasty turn.

The Shawn O’Connor campaign sent out an email and corresponding petition claiming the Carol Shea-Porter campaign is going around telling people that O’Connor is “a perpetrator of domestic violence.”

“Ms. Shea-Porter’s campaign has repeatedly called her primary opponent, Shawn O’Connor, ‘a perpetrator of domestic violence,’” wrote the O’Connor campaign.

This news came as a shock to many people including myself. I have known Carol Shea-Porter and her campaign staff for the better part of a decade, and this is completely out of character for her. So I contacted both campaigns for more information.

The O’Connor campaign told me that Shea-Porter’s campaign manager Naomi Andrews communicated this rumor to Julia Barnes, the former NH for Bernie campaign director, at an event in January. O’Connor’s campaign also claimed that this rumor was repeated to former Senator Jackie Cilley and Senator David Pierce by people who have supported Shea-Porter’s campaign in the past.

After getting O’Connor’s side of the story, I reached out to Julia Barnes and Naomi Andrews for their comment. While I was unable to reach Ms. Barnes, she did post her very strong support for Carol Shea-Porter.

JuliaFacebook

Ms. Andrews immediately denied these claims stating, “This is just a sad and desperate attack. Nothing more needs to be said.”

O’Connor’s campaign second claim was that Caroline French, a well know local Democrat, also repeated this rumor to Jackie Cilley.

I spoke with Ms. French directly and she was shocked to hear what they were claiming and that she was somehow connected to this. She knew nothing of this. She only marginally remembered hearing something about O’Connor being the victim of domestic abuse and never said he was “perpetrator of domestic violence.”

In a response to WMUR, Jackie Cilley said, “’There is no doubt in my mind that Shawn O’Connor has been slimed with being the perpetrator of domestic violence,’ through rumors circulating in Stafford County.” Cilley continued to say that she “heard rumors about [O’Connor]” but as WMUR clearly pointed out, “Cilley stressed several times, she has received no indication that Shea-Porter or her campaign staff is the source of any sort of whispering campaign.”

Lastly, the O’Connor campaign claimed that another local member of “Team Shea Porter” shared this rumor with State Senator David Pierce. O’Connor’s campaign claimed that this person even went as far as to admit this rumor was a lie being pushed by Shea-Porter’s campaign.

After multiple attempts via phone, email, and social media, Sen.Pierce has yet to respond to me with any comment at all.

The O’Connor campaign did release a statement that Sen.Pierce affirmed that a “member of Team Shea-Porter” had told him this rumor directly. “I spoke to a member of Team Shea Porter who told me a number of allegations against Shawn, including that he was a perpetrator of domestic violence.”

Sen.Pierce has refused to talk to us but did respond to WMUR where he said that, “someone who he knows is in the Shea-Porter inner circle of supporters” was spreading this rumor. This is a giant step back from the claim it was someone on the inside of Shea Porter’s campaign.

Pierce went on to tell WMUR, “I have no knowledge that Carol knew any this was going on. I don’t know if any of her staff knew that any of this was going on because I don’t know if, and I don’t believe, this person is on her staff.”

Pierce told WMUR he could not recall “the specific words, the specific way in which this person came about this information…”

Now O’Connor is threatening to sue Shea-Porter for rumors that are floating around in the area and have yet to been connected to Shea-Porter’s campaign.

If none of these people can connect Carol Shea-Porter or anyone in her campaign, why is O’Connor calling for her to quit the race? She has done nothing wrong, and he has no evidence that she has.

Another thing that strikes me as strange is that the O’Connor campaign is claiming that these rumors have been circulating since July of 2015, yet it was unknown to pretty much everyone, that O’Connor was a victim of domestic violence until he shared his story in the fall of 2015.

Based on the evidence presented, and lack of evidence connecting the Shea-Porter campaign, I find this attack to be completely baseless and unsubstantiated. There is no proof that Carol Shea-Porter or her campaign are involved in these “rumors” about O’Connor and calling for her to end her candidacy is unwarranted. This is a well-crafted smear campaign by O’Connor against a very upstanding public servant who has represented the people of the New Hampshire with honor and dignity for years.

I do not know how well Mr. O’Connor has gotten to know Ms. Shea-Porter in the short two-years since he moved here from New York, but those of us who have been around her for many years know that this completely uncharacteristic for Carol or her campaign. This only adds to unbelievability of these claims against her.

This makes me greatly suspect of Mr. O’Connor’s character by pushing these unsubstantiated claims against Shea-Porter in an attempt to eliminate his primary competition. This entire attack on Carol’s integrity is dirty, underhanded and reeks of corrupt New York style politics.

I hope that the Shawn O’Connor campaign pulls their petition and apologizes for spreading this misinformation about Carol Shea-Porter.

I welcome real substantive debate on the issues between O’Connor and Shea-Porter, not baseless mudslinging, and look forward to moving through the primary process to see whom the people of New Hampshire will support.


If you have more information about this story or further proof that I am wrong, message me directly.

Why I Voted No On The “CROmnibus” Spending Bill By Carol Shea-Porter

By Carol Shea-Porter

Last week, Congress passed a 1,600-page funding bill, known as the “CRomnibus,” which was packed with provisions that favored moneyed special interests over middle-class Americans. Although there were many good provisions in the bill, I voted against it because the bad clearly outweighed the good, and there was an alternative, a Continuing Resolution, which would have kept the government open and funded while members who opposed the bill worked to take out the big-money giveaways.

While it’s Congress’s job to fund the government, it’s underhanded when some members hide special-interest provisions, known as “riders,” in the funding bill. Last-minute 1,600-page bills make it impossible for the taxpaying public and members of Congress to find this stuff when there is just 48 hours before a vote. That means the lobbyists involved in backroom negotiations had an insurmountable head start over Main Street, and the lobbyists made sure the bill reflected their clients’ interests.

One of the most deeply disturbing provisions in this bill calls for a taxpayer-funded bailout for irresponsible institutions if they get themselves in trouble again. I was in Congress when big banks seriously damaged the economy and the middle class in 2008. I voted against the bank bailouts at the time. The next year, I helped pass the Dodd-Frank financial reform law, which, while not perfect, corrected fundamental flaws in our financial system to try to prevent a future crisis.

Now, Congress has repealed an important part of that financial reform law – the section that limits the risks banks can take with federally insured money. Once again, we are back on the hook for an especially risky type of Wall Street gamble, known as a custom swap. These complicated financial instruments are not only risky, but also notoriously difficult for regulators to monitor because they are so complex.

Sound complicated? It is, which is why the big bank lobbyists figured they would meet little resistance. In fact, Citigroup lobbyists wrote the repeal language themselves, then heavily pressured their Republican allies to drop it into the annual funding bill.

Congress has just set a terrible precedent. With this victory in their pockets, we should expect the “too big to fail” banks and their allies in Congress to keep trying to dismantle financial reform and erode consumer protections by attaching further concessions to future funding bills. In the House, 57 Democrats voted yes and 67 Republicans voted no for this awful provision.

The bailout provision is just one of a number of special-interest victories in the CRomnibus. Another raises campaign contribution limits, giving a small number of wealthy individuals a lot more leverage to drown out our middle-class voices.

Nobody will even admit to writing this provision, which lets big-money donors give almost 10 times as much to national parties’ campaign committees. The maximum individual contribution to national party committees will increase from $97,200 to $777,600 per year. As a campaign finance reform advocate, I have always highlighted the corrupting nature of money in politics. Polls show Americans hate all this money, but Congress just increased the allowable amounts.

Not only did the special interests secure provisions to help themselves, but they also weakened protections for middle-class Americans. The bill’s little-noticed change to pensions could have a huge impact on American retirees, many of whom called my office during the two days leading up to the vote, concerned about the future of their promised benefits. Multi-employer pensions are now allowed to reduce benefits if they face potential insolvency up to 19 years in the future. According to the AARP, that means some retirees could see benefit cuts of more than 60 percent. Where is their bailout?

There are many other problems not even noticed and/or discussed yet. This bill, now law, makes it clearer than ever that something is very, very wrong in Washington. We cannot throw our hands up in despair though – Americans need to keep fighting to make sure Congress is working for the people also, not just Wall Street.

It has been my honor to advocate for the people of New Hampshire during my time as your representative. I am proud that my last major vote in the 113th Congress was a vote for middle-class families.

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