Rep. Pam Tucker is under fire from at least one influential state Republican Committee member for taking a “walk” on a recent vote to overturn the state’s gay marriage law, a charge she denies, saying she was attending a Lenten function for her church at the time of the vote. The issue is heating up again because Tucker is running for the vacant Republican National Committeewoman seat against Juliana Bergeron.
“Last week, [Tucker] decided to ‘take a walk’ on the issue of restoring traditional marriage in New Hampshire,” writes delegate Ted Maravelias from Windham, one of those who will be voting in the contest, in an email to the entire Republican State Committee.
“The issue of traditional marriage is a tenet of the Republican Party Platform that is particularly important to me,” he continued. “Last week, Pam Tucker, decided note (sic) to vote on that issue when it came time to vote -even though she had been at the State House immediately before that time campaigning for herself! When asked, she told me she had a more pressing engagement. To me, that is a convenient way of deciding not to take a stand.”
Maravelias is no ordinary delegate. He was a leader of Americans for Prosperity in New Hampshire, a powerful grassroots group.
Nevertheless, conservatives may be willing to cut Tucker some slack when they learn what her previously scheduled engagement was.
“As chair of my Christian Education Committee at my church, I was responsible for setting up the Lenten supper series events leading up to Easter. Back in February, I agreed to moderate an event on March 21, long before anyone knew what votes were to be taken on that day,” Tucker told NH Journal. “The day ran long, I stayed as long as I could which was until 4:00 but then needed to leave. I had an obligation to my church and family that I was not going to miss.”
“The email states I walked which, as you know, is factually incorrect,” she said. “A ‘walk’ or missed vote is noted as not voting, unexcused. Quite often, there may be votes cast afterwards. I voted no further that day and was excused. Anyone doing any type of checking could have easily deduced that.”
“I am on record during the 2009 HB436 vote that established gay marriage,” she told NH Journal. She also said she supports keeping traditional marriage in the state GOP platform.