July 20th, 2010
02:34 PM ET
3 years ago

Palin move in New Hampshire revs up Democratic campaign

Rep. Paul Hodes and former New Hampshire Attorney General Kelly Ayotte are trading barbs in the race to fill retiring Sen. Judd Gregg’s seat.
Rep. Paul Hodes and former New Hampshire Attorney General Kelly Ayotte are trading barbs in the race to fill retiring Sen. Judd Gregg’s seat.

(CNN) – Former New Hampshire Attorney General Kelly Ayotte's Senate campaign isn't the only one revved up by Monday's endorsement from Sarah Palin - Democrat Paul Hodes is pretty happy about it too.

"We couldn't be more thrilled that Sarah Palin chose to endorse Kelly Ayotte," Mark Bergman, Hodes's campaign communications director, said Tuesday during a conference call with reporters. "[…]The people of New Hampshire have already rejected Sarah Palin once in the general election and we're pretty certain we're going to do it again."

"We call on Kelly Ayotte today to tell us that Sarah Palin will be here in October campaigning for her," Bergman said. "We hope she does. I mean, that would be really helpful for our campaign."

Hodes, a one-term congressman, is running unopposed for the Democratic Senatorial nomination in the Granite State. Ayotte faces two GOP primary opponents.

"Sarah Palin is welcome here anytime to call out Paul Hodes's false attacks," Ayotte's Communications Director Jeff Grappone told CNN.

The Hodes campaign also launched a new television ad Tuesday attacking Ayotte for "duck[ing] responsibility" in the aftermath of the closure of Financial Resources Mortgage (FRM). The New Hampshire firm is accused of defrauding customers for millions of dollars and has been called a Ponzi scheme by investigators. Ayotte was attorney general during the time FRM allegedly conducted criminal activity.

The Hodes campaign announced they would double their ad buy this week to $100,000 to air the 30-second spot in the Boston and Manchester media markets.

The ad marks Hodes's second of the campaign season. The first – also an attack ad against Ayotte – was heavily criticized by the conservative New Hampshire Union Leader for including what it called "dishonest smears."

Grappone says Hodes's latest ad is no different.

"When professional politicians get desperate they resort to false attacks," Grappone said. "Hodes' first attack ad on Kelly Ayotte was universally condemned as misleading and untrue, and this vicious attack is more of the same."

A non-partisan poll of New Hampshire voters conducted in April indicated that Ayotte led Hodes by 15 points in a hypothetical general election matchup, with just over one in five undecided.


Filed under: 2010 • Kelly Ayotte • New Hampshire • Paul Hodes
soundoff (39 Responses)
  1. Bertina

    Gotta make sure you give the GOP a pat on the back CNN by quoting a poll twice.

    July 20, 2010 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  2. Larry

    I'm always pleased when Palin endorses a candidate. Putting Palin on the ticket in 2008 is why the voters rejected the republican party.

    July 20, 2010 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  3. doug

    wow, this guy looks almost as lib as Franken, and decent person can see the evil oozing out of their eyes, guess that is why only the worst humans in North America vote Demo-rat.

    July 20, 2010 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  4. Dale

    Democrats???
    I don't see democrats, I see liberals campaigning as democrats.
    Real democrats should throw the liberal base out of office for misrepresentation. They lie daily to you and you fall for it.

    July 20, 2010 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  5. charlie from the North

    It is just like driving a car "R" is for going backwards........."D" is for going forward.

    Any questions?

    July 20, 2010 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  6. Bob in PA

    Aye, keep on saying Sarah doesn't matter. Just repeat it over and over again. Oh. and don't forget to click your heels, you just might make it back to Kansas.

    July 20, 2010 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  7. Debbie

    I'm glad to know that everyone doesn't think she's GOD!
    Good For you Mr. Hodges. A state that need no outsiders.

    July 20, 2010 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  8. BeverlyNC

    Thank you moron Palin – your endorsement ensures the Democrat will win. No one will vote for an extremist-backed Republican, especially one who can't speak proper English, use correct grammar, and doesn't know the first thing about American history or politics. 75% of all Americans think Palin is not qualified for ANY office and want her to shut up and go away. She is an embarrassment to herself and has destroyed the Republican Party.

    Thank you Sarah – the Democrats have just won another seat with your nonsense endorsement.

    July 20, 2010 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  9. Clint, Wa.

    Kelly Ayotte, gets the Palin kiss of death.

    July 20, 2010 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  10. Sniffit

    Not meaning this in any sexist way at all, but I don't remember a single article about Palin endorsifying a male candidate. Has she and I missed it? Or is the apparent female-candidate consistency actually occuring? Weird. In any case, they're all more like intellectual Teddygrahams, not Grizzlies, and stupid has nothing to do with genitalia.

    July 20, 2010 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  11. Peter s

    Any endorsement from that ( Jezebel) woman is a curse from GOD and you will carry the curse for ever!. run run Paul Hodes!!

    July 20, 2010 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  12. geecee

    The dingbat is poison in NH. Believe it!

    July 20, 2010 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  13. Brenda

    If we and the media stop listening to all this garbage, may be she will GO away!

    July 20, 2010 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  14. Lynne

    I think everything Palin has done over the past 1-2 years will eventually backfire. When main motive is greed, you end up digging hole for yourself one way or another. If she should ever try to run for higher office, I think a lot of the rather thoughtless statements will come back to haunt her when she predictably will try to deny ever saying them. Fortunately, there's plenty of video to correct that.

    July 20, 2010 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  15. tcaros

    Sarah Palin may help the Dems gain some seats too!

    July 20, 2010 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  16. Dave

    Wait until Obama or Biden wants to come and help him. Will he be just as excited?

    July 20, 2010 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  17. Readbetweenthelines

    Is it me, or is Palin endorsing nearly all women? Truthfully I think more women in congress would be a positive shake up. Reason I bring this up is because I feel behind the scenes EVERY single man she has approched to endorse has rejected her offer. I think that candidate in Idaho (male) who lost miserably after her endorsement tells the story. The real shame here is the CNN has continued to give Palin a soap box to stand on. Why is she even qualified to endorse people for congress? Has she known Kelly Ayotte for a long time? Are they friends? Has she even met this woman – doubt it! Gee, I wish people whom I never met me could offer me a recomendation next time I am looking for a new job! I am calling Steve Jobs right now!

    July 20, 2010 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  18. ThsIsNotReal22

    Wow, what an arrogant man. I hope he falls hard in the general election.

    July 20, 2010 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  19. Marie MD

    I am perplexed that the AK quitter continues to endorse candidates and said candidates think that she is the best thing since . . . . . the Earth was created (big bang theory though).
    Oh yeah, "When professional politicians get desperate they resort to false attacks," Grappone said. No kidding Sherlock. This is what the moron from AK is best at if you want her to be on your side. Just talking points, no real solutions and if that doesn't "refudiate" you I don't know what wilil.
    The hate and the lies is what she is all about and she is very good at it. I wonder if she will write her shrill speech on her hands or will she bring a dictionary with her to make sure she doesn't make up more words.

    July 20, 2010 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  20. haren

    She is endorsing her piers that is stupid like her.

    July 20, 2010 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  21. JohnnySak

    Palin will not only sink the Tea Party, she'll sink the entire republican party as well. Oh – they'll win pretty big this next cycle, as we continue the "throw out the rascals" dance, but the pendulum will swing back dramatically after these neo-nazi right wingers get 2 years under their belts. Mark my words – Palin is the devil!

    July 20, 2010 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  22. Hannah

    It is looking better all the time for Democrats this fall. With Sara Palin out there and the extreme right wing republican candidates, we will hold on to both houses so that we can get on with the business of repairing the bush economic disaster, clean up the wars and fix our country.

    July 20, 2010 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  23. Mark Burkholder

    Sarah Pallin is probably one of those people that should not be in the public eye. She has quite a past. She has neevr really finished anything of importance in her life. If she wants to speak out she should learn all the facts.

    July 20, 2010 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  24. MaryAngeline

    Having once lived in NH for 10 years, I can't imagine that Sarah P.'s endorsement would be helpful to any candidate. True, NH voters are conservative but I don't think they would appreciate alot of Palin's thoughtless comments on alot of issues. This will be an interesting race to watch.

    July 20, 2010 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  25. Rightwingevangelicalconservatism is a disease

    Go Sarah, give 'em a taste of your Shakespearean wit.

    July 20, 2010 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
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