Don Bolduc on November 1, 2022
News of a major Republican-aligned outside group shifting financial resources out of New Hampshire created a buzz in the Beltway, but it was just business as usual for my campaign in the Granite State. After all, we had been outspent from the beginning, in both the primary and general election. Forces aligned with the same Senate Leadership Fund that was cutting bait had spent nearly $5 million dollars attacking me in the lead-up to the September primary.
Fundraising has never been my strength as a candidate. I was never going to be able to compete with the entrenched politicians who work the phones and announce eye-popping numbers on the FEC report. Instead, I decided from the get-go to focus my campaign on the people I was seeking to represent.
In my home of New Hampshire, this type of strategy is possible. With a population of 1.3 million people and two congressional districts, retail politics remains paramount. Last spring, my campaign launched a series of town hall meetings. To date, we have held more than 75. These are an opportunity for voters of all stripes to come and ask me whatever is on their mind.
It’s not just Republicans or conservatives who show up. I’ve been grilled by citizens of all stripes: liberals, independents, people who frankly are not inclined to vote for me. Along the way, I’ve faced my fair share of tough questions, and that’s OK. In fact, that’s how things are supposed to work.
A funny thing happens when you immerse yourself with voters: you learn about the issues on their mind. I have faced questions about economic uncertainty from moms wondering how they are going to afford necessities that have become unaffordable. I’ve heard from small business owners whose margins have become untenable and their life’s work hangs in the balance. I’ve heard from older folks who logged into their retirement account one day to find their nest eggs depleted and face the prospect of staying in the workforce longer than expected.
Over the weekend, Eversource Energy wrote to the White House warning of energy shortages this winter. With temperatures dropping into the 30s at night and winter looming, this is scary stuff that impacts every single person. The Biden administration has no answers to our nation’s energy crisis. These are the concerns on voters’ minds.
Yes, I hear questions influenced by my opponent’s campaign of smears and lies. Sen. Maggie Hassan has spent millions of dollars scaring voters into believing that I support a federal ban on abortion or privatizing Social Security and Medicare. Neither claim is true, but I understand why voters have questions, and do my best to answer them. That is the purpose of the town hall meeting.
Yet on economic issues, my opponent has precious little to say. After all, the situation deteriorated to its current condition on her watch. Hassan’s votes empowered the Biden administration’s agenda and priorities. In a 50-50 Senate, every vote is the difference maker, and for two long years, Hassan’s has been a guaranteed “yes” for whatever the Biden White House is pushing.
As the campaign entered the home stretch, the polls began tightening. One last week even showed the race tied. Multiple outside groups re-invested in our race. The momentum started shifting to our side. Former President George H.W. Bush called it “The Big Mo.” It’s hard to get and even harder to stop.
As the campaign enters the closing stretch, I feel confident about where I stand. It will be a close race, no doubt. Elections in New Hampshire usually are. My fate is in the hands of God and the people I am seeking to represent, and that’s a good place to be.
A retired brigadier general, Don Bolduc is the Republican nominee for the United States Senate in New Hampshire.
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