CONCORD — In the end, the Republican voters of New Hampshire were in no mood for upsets.
Scott Brown, Walt Havenstein, Frank Guinta and Marilinda Garcia will top the New Hampshire Republican ticket on Nov. 4, after winning their respective primaries on Tuesday. And all won easily.
Brown, Havenstein and Garcia won convincingly; for Guinta, it was a bit closer than anticipated.
Brown defeated former state Sen. Jim Rubens and former U.S. Sen Bob Smith to finally get the general election matchup with Sen. Jeanne Shaheen he has coveted for at least the better part of 2014.
According to results published by Politico.com, with nearly 80 percent of the statewide vote counted Brown led with 49.8 percent to 23.5 percent for Rubens and 22.4 percent for Bob Smith.
Brown, accepting victory at the Grappone Conference Center in Concord, called the support of Rubens and Smith “invaluable,” but focused on his general election foe, Sen. Jeanne Shaheen.
“Nobody in the Senate is more invested in the policies and the failures of Barack Obama than Senator Jeanne Shaheen,” he said. “They campaigned together in our state six years ago. They were elected on the same day. And from that day to this, she has voted for the failed Obama agenda more than 99 percent of the time.
“If you look up the numbers, even Harry Reid and Bernie Sanders have shown more independence than that. And when the Democratic Leader himself is less partisan than the senior senator from New Hampshire, something is seriously out of line.”
Shaheen, who had no primary, emphasized her long service to the state and Brown recent move here to her supporters at the Puritan Backroom in Manchester.
“I didn’t just move here,” she said. “I’ve been here, working to make a difference for New Hampshire. No matter where Scott Brown lives, he’s going to put Scott Brown first. Not you. Not your family. Not New Hampshire.’
“No matter where he lives, Scott Brown’s not going to be there for working people,” Shaheen said. She said Brown “voted to give the five biggest oil companies more than $20 billion in taxpayer subsidies. And what happened? Scott Brown got nearly a half-million (dollars) for his campaign from big oil. No matter where he lives, Scott Brown’s going to be there for big oil.”
“Big oil and Wall Street are spending millions to get Scott Brown back in the Senate. But we’re not going to let that happen,” said Shaheen. “New Hampshire is not a consolation prize. New Hampshire deserves a Senator who puts New Hampshire first. That’s what I’ve always done and always will.”
The former governor began airing her first two general election television ads Tuesday night – one positive ad with supporters praising her work for the state and the other an attack on Brown.
Businessman Walt Havenstein, who came out of private sector retirement to run for governor, will carry the GOP flag against first-term Democratic incumbent Gov. Maggie Hassan, who had token primary opposition.
Havenstein was leading conservative/libertarian millennial Andrew Hemingway 56 to 37 percent with nearlyh 80 percent of the vote counted.
Havenstein, accepting victory at the Sam Adams Bar at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium in Manchester, said complimented Hemingway and asked for Hemingway’s supporters to back him.
“We cannot afford two more years of Maggie Hassan,” he said. “We have an economic plan and we have the knowledge to pull it off.”
Hemingway told his backers, “We moved the ball forward. We made a statement. Like you, I’m not happy just making a statement. I wanted to win. But together, all of us united around a set of ideas, a set of principles.
“We have started to build something that is going to win the day.”
Hassan, appearing at the Backroom in Manchester, said, “Because we have stood with the people of New Hampshire and listened to their priorities, we have put our state back on the right track.
“We have brought together Democrats, Republicans and independents to help innovative businesses create jobs, to expand middle class opportunity, and to move our economy forward.
“I am proud to stand before you as your Governor and say, that with your support, we have been able to restore the New Hampshire tradition of bipartisan, common-sense problem solving,” Hassan said.
She took aim at Havenstein, saying, “By signing his name to the Koch Brothers pledge and pushing an anti-middle class agenda right out of their playbook, my opponent has already shown us his roadmap, and it takes New Hampshire in the wrong direction.
“He signed his name to taking access to health coverage away from 50,000 hard-working Granite Staters.”
And she said, “When it comes to women’s health care, he simply can’t be trusted. He told his far-right backers that he supports restrictions on a woman’s right to make her own health decisions. And he has publicly applauded the Hobby Lobby decision that allows an employer to deny health insurance that covers contraception.”
1st District U.S. House
Frank Guinta will get his third battle against Rep. Carol Shea-Porter. He was declared the winner over former University of New Hampshire business school dean Dan Innis at about 10 p.m.
With nearly 80 percent of the vote counted, Guinta had 48 percent to 41 percent for Innis and 8 percent for Brendan Kelly.
Shea-Porter’s campaign wasted no time trying to define Guinta as a radical “Tea Partier.”
“We look forward to comparing Carol’s record of service, commitment, and accomplishment to Frank Guinta’s dismal record. Guinta is well known to New Hampshire after serving one term in the House of Representatives, where he established himself as a right-wing Tea Partier. As a member of the Budget Committee, Guinta worked closely with Paul Ryan to create the devastating Republican budget that slammed the middle class, hurt working families and small businesses, and protected tax breaks for the Koch Brothers, Big Oil, and corporations that ship American jobs overseas. Frank Guinta can talk about his values, but the old adage, ‘Don’t tell me what your values are. Show me your budget and I’ll tell you what your values are’ applies here,” said Marjorie Connolly, Shea-Porter campaign spokeswoman.
Connolly noted that Guinta voted for sequestration and for a budget that “cut Meals on Wheels” and she charged he “wanted to turn Medicare into a voucher program. New Hampshire knows that he voted against women’s health, tried to put the insurance companies back in charge of people’s healthcare, and that he is still under investigation by the FEC. As Fergus Cullen, the former Chairman of the NH Republican Party, said this week: ‘Guinta is a deeply flawed candidate…who is one subpoena away from a full-blown scandal.’”
2nd District U.S. House
Marilinda Garcia swept to victory over Gary Lambert and Jim Lawrence, following the harshest of the top contests.
With nearly 80 percent of votes counted, Garcia led Lambert, 50 to 26 percent, with 19 percent for Lawrence.
In her victory speech at The Centennial Hotel in Concord, Garcia promised to work to put an end to “what has become an adversarial federal government. We need to return autonomy to New Hampshire.
She noted that Rep. Ann Kuster voted with President Obama “95 percent of the time,” and after her speech, challenged Kuster to appear with her at a town hall meeting.