New Hampshire Republican Party Chair Jennifer Horn on Tuesday issued a warning to Republican activists who openly endorse Democrats: they will not be members of the Republican State Committee on her watch.
Horn wrote the stern message on the party Facebook page after word circulated that some Republicans have placed signs for Democratic Executive Councilor Chris Pappas on their properties alongside signs for Republican candidate for governor Walt Havenstein. The message also came after Pappas unveiled a list of 50 Republicans supporting him.
Those properties appeared to include the Copper Door restaurant in Bedford, owned by businessman Bill Greiner, a long-time Republican activist who co-hosted a reception for Havenstein but who in 2011 and 2012 contributed a total of $4,500 to Sen. Jeanne Shaheen’s campaign.
But Greiner Wednesday morning said the Pappas sign that Republicans are concerned about is not on his Copper Door property. He said it is on adjacent property owned by businessman Dick Anagnost.
“As far as the Copper Door signs,” he said, “almost all are for Republicans.” He also said that since there are actually “10 owners of the Copper Door,” if any of the owners want to display signs for other candidates, he is not going to oppose it.
“I never met Chris Pappas and wouldn’t know Chris Pappas if he walked in front of me,” he said.
Greiner said it is no secret that he contributed to Shaheen’s campaign in past years.
“I did that because she was helpful to me when I had a trade dispute with the Quebec government, a multi-million dollar dispute,” he said. He noted that he has not contributed to her campaign this year.
Greiner also said that in addition to the event for Havenstein, he has also hosted, at the Copper Door, events for the NHGOP, featuring Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, as well as fundraisers for U.S. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and for 2nd District U.S. House candidate Marilinda Garcia.
(However, other Republicans pointed out that in 2012, Greiner supported Democratic state Senate candidate Lee Nyquist over Republican Andy Sanborn.)
Pappas faces Republican Bob Burns of Bedford in the general election after Burns defeated Jim Adams in last week’s primary.
Pappas Tuesday unveiled a list of 50 “Republicans for Pappas.” And Gov. Maggie Hassan unveiled a Veterans Committee headed by Republican Griffin Dalianis of Nashua.
Horn’s Facebook message appeared to be an attempt to make clear that she would not remain on the sidelines while Republican activists endorse Democrats.
“I am stunned to see that any Republican would put their name on an effort to promote Chris Pappas for Executive Councilor. Pappas has voted for all of Gov. Hassan’s irresponsible, out-of-control spending, pushing her efforts to force our state into an income tax. Pappas declares that Jeanne Shaheen – who voted with President Obama 99% of the time – is the person in politics he most admires. Anyone who cares about responsible, limited, efficient government can clearly see that Chris Pappas is the wrong man for the job. As Chairman of the NHGOP I will enforce all applicable bylaws that prohibit participation as members of the State Committee to any Republican that endorses or supports a Democrat against a Republican in the 2014 elections.”