New Hampshire AG Says Democrats Engaging in Voter Suppression, Violating Election Law

New Hampshire AG Says Democrats Engaging in Voter Suppression, Violating Election Law

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The Democratic National Committee is telling New Hampshire party leaders not to participate in the state’s Jan. 23 primary, saying it is ’meaningless’

The New Hampshire attorney general’s office has accused the Democratic National Committee (DNC) of unlawful voter suppression and violating state election laws in a cease and desist order sent to the DNC Rules and Bylaws Committee (RBC) on Monday.

The Jan. 8 demand letter was prompted by DNC leaders urging New Hampshire Democrats to declare the upcoming state primary to be nonbinding and to “educate the public” that the results will be “meaningless.”
The instructions were outlined in a Jan. 5 letter from RBC co-chairs Minyon Moore and James Roosevelt Jr. to New Hampshire Democratic Party (NHDP) Chairman Ray Buckley. In the letter, the chairs instruct Mr. Buckley that the Jan. 23 New Hampshire primary “cannot be used as the first determining stage of the state’s delegate selection process” and that the NHDP and the presidential candidates should “take all steps possible not to participate.”

They also promised to discount the win of any candidate over President Joe Biden in the New Hampshire primary by not awarding any delegates to them based on the primary results.

“No scheduling of events related to the selection of delegates or alternates in New Hampshire may be based on the January 23, 2024 event,” Ms. Moore and Mr. Roosevelt wrote.

In his Jan. 8 letter, New Hampshire Assistant Attorney General Brendan O’Donnell called the DNC’s statements “false, deceptive, and misleading.”

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“Telling the public or any person qualified to register to vote or vote in New Hampshire that the January 23, 2024, New Hampshire democratic Presidential Primary Election is ’meaningless,‘ or soliciting NHDP or any other party to make such statements, constitutes an attempt to prevent or deter New Hampshire voters from participating in the January 23, 2024, New Hampshire democratic Presidential Primary Election,” which is a violation of state law, Mr. O’Donnell wrote.

Biden Won’t Appear on Ballot

The political skirmish comes just two weeks from the New Hampshire primary. President Joe Biden’s campaign refuses to participate in the contest, insisting that the South Carolina Democratic primary on Feb. 3 will be the party’s first nominating contest.

President Biden will not appear on the ballot, and the only way he will win the New Hampshire primary is if New Hampshire Democrats spearhead a write-in campaign.

The state attorney general’s office issued the cease and desist order to the DNC leaders after 70 New Hampshire Republicans complained to his office about the Jan. 5 letter.

In a written statement on the matter, Republican state Rep. Joe Sweeney, the House majority leader, called the actions of the DNC “deeply concerning” and a “gross action of electioneering.”

“We’ve documented instances within the DNC’s communication that we believe warrant scrutiny and public attention,” he wrote. “Our state deserves the respect it has earned through its long-standing tradition of civic engagement. We’ll continue to fight to ensure that the voices of our citizens are heard and that our electoral integrity remains intact.”

The DNC has continuously indicated it wants to recognize the March 12 date set by the DNC as the New Hampshire primary and not Jan. 23, as set by New Hampshire Secretary of State David Scanlan.

Mr. Buckley, chair of the NHDP, released a statement about the issue.

“It’s safe to say in New Hampshire, the DNC is less popular than the NY Yankees,” he said. “Nothing has changed, and we look forward to seeing a great Democratic voter turnout on January 23rd.”

In his cease and desist letter, Mr. O’Donnell indicated that the attorney general’s office review of the RBC’s actions remains open.

Several Democrats Running in New Hampshire

There are 19 Democrat candidates on New Hampshire’s primary ballot, including U.S. Rep. Dean Phillips of Minnesota, who registered late for the contest.

Mr. Phillips said he has gone from “darling to devil” within his own party since announcing his challenge to President Biden. He said he has been treated with “extraordinary hypocrisy, meanness, and attacks” by establishment Democrats.

Mr. Phillips has warned that President Biden will undoubtedly lose to President Trump and that if President Trump is disqualified, the Democrats are going to end up with former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley as their president if they don’t start supporting an alternative candidate.

Ms. Haley and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis are battling for second and third place in national polls, but both are far behind President Trump.

A new poll shows that in the two months since declaring his candidacy in New Hampshire, Mr. Phillips has won about 21 percent of voter support. Marianne Williamson, who has been campaigning since March, is also on the New Hampshire Democratic ballot. She has polled in the low teens in some surveys. Both she and Mr. Phillips said they are banking on President Biden’s plummeting popularity as a way for voters to take notice of them.

According to a Dec. 18 poll by Monmouth University, less than 35 percent of Americans approve of President Biden’s job performance on key issues including immigration, an issue that 69 percent of those polled said President Biden was not handling well. Other results showed that 68 percent faulted him on his handling of inflation, 53 percent disapproved of his handling of climate change, and 53 percent disapproved of his performance in the category of jobs and unemployment.

“There is political danger in pushing a message that basically tells people their take on their own situation is wrong,” Patrick Murray, director of the independent Monmouth University Polling Institute, said about the poll results.

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