Editor's note: Cheryl Russell was born and raised locally and currently resides in her hometown of Dover. She earned associate's and bachelor's degrees as well as numerous post-baccalaureate college level courses. Her major work experience includes investment banking, teaching high school and more than 30 years with the U.S. Department of the Treasury. Her patriotic roots and love of America run deep; her ancestors arrived in this country before the Revolutionary War, fought in the Civil War and have served in every major war since. Her op-eds will appear in The Rochester Voice on an occasional basis.
New Hampshire proved itself to be largely conservative by re-electing Governor Sununu with an overwhelming margin and by awarding control of the State's House and Senate to the Republican party during the November 2020 election. That begs the question: Why were Jeanne Shaheen, Ann Kuster, and Chris Pappas re-elected to represent New Hampshire in Washington, D.C.?
Republicans in New Hampshire must address this dichotomy if any hope exists of gaining control of the House of Representatives and the Senate in Washington, D.C. during the next election cycle. Chris Pappas, Maggie Hassan, and Ann Kuster will be up for election in 2022--less than two years from now. Jeanne Shaheen will not be up for re-election until 2026. So let us talk about Pappas, Kuster and Hassan.
The Republican Candidates in the November 2020 election for the State's First District were Corky Messner and Matt Mowers. When Chris Pappas ran for his first term in the House, his Republican opponent was Maura Sullivan. All three of the Republican candidates were characterized as carpet baggers. Maura moved to Portsmouth, NH in 2017 and faced off Chris Pappas in 2018. Prior to last fall's election campaign, Corky Messner was a New Hampshire resident for only 2 years (although he owned a home in Wolfeboro for 12 years); and Matt Mowers moved to New Hampshire in 2014 but did not "put down roots" until 2019.
Undoubtedly, people of New Hampshire prefer to have "one of their own" (no matter what the individual's political affiliation) representing them in Washington, D.C. rather than someone who is 'from away". Do you remember the failed campaign of Senator Scott Brown from Massachusetts in 2014?
Ann Kuster presents a great challenge because of the wide margin of votes cast for her. But, In the case of Maggie Hassan, Kelly Ayotte was beaten by a mere 1,023 votes. "According to the cell phone survey of 867 New Hampshire registered voters conducted Feb. 4-6, 39 percent of voters said Hassan deserves a second six-year term, while 47 percent said, "it's time to give someone else a chance." The poll has a margin of error of 3.3 percentage points." (WMURTV) With hard work and determination, we can overcome Hassan's narrow 2016 margin in 2022!
As for Chris Pappas, we must find a strong New Hampshire native who can do back flips over the inaction and poor representation by Pappas. We need an individual who will promote the best interest of the State of New Hampshire and the country in Washington, D.C. Pappas merely holds the Democratic Party line.
Surely there are capable longtime conservative residents in our great state -- look only at the State GOP Committee, Kelly Ayotte, and Governor Sununu. We must identify potential candidates who embody our hopes and dreams for the future. We must provide support and encouragement to those individuals. Without delay, we must assist in promoting name recognition in the public domain. The 2022 election cycle will rapidly be upon us.
It is time for conservatives to regroup and plan for the next election cycle. We cannot and should not allow the national party organization to determine who will represent the people of New Hampshire. Each of us must start attending and participating in local Republican Committee meetings thereby enlarging the network of conservative political activism. Start by accessing https://secure.nh.gop/.
We must inform the public of the dangers of the radical liberal progressive agenda daily. The future of our Constitutional Republic rests upon the shoulders of every citizen.