Former state Senator and Marine Corps Reserve Colonel Gary Lambert became the first Republican to enter the 2014 mix today, launching a bid for New Hampshire’s 2nd district, a seat currently occupied by Democrat Annie Kuster.
‘‘Republican ideas work. We’ve proven how they work in New Hampshire,’’ he stated in his campaign launch, per the AP. “‘‘Voters are counting on Republicans to keep the focus on jobs and the strengthening the middle class, not divisive Washington politics.’’
The report notes that Lambert is by and large seen by observers as the strongest challenger to unseat Kuster, with polls indicating the first-term incumbent is vulnerable in 2014.
Elected to the state Senate in 2010, he opted against a 2012 re-elect bid to return to being actively on duty in the Marine Corps Reserve.
Democrats immediately sought to tie Lambert to controversial state Rep. Bill O’Brien, who recently passed on a bid of his own.
‘‘With tea party radical Bill O’Brien out of the race, the extreme right found their guy to carry the torch in his place: Gary Lambert,’’ stated DCCC spox Marc Brummer.
A counter-volley from Republicans touted Lambert’s military credentials, along with the shrinking possibility that Democrats will retake the House next year.
‘‘Democrats will have to spend critical resources defending several vulnerable incumbents, and even an open seat, in territory they thought was safe. That’s not the playing field you need to gain the 17 seats needed to put Nancy Pelosi back in the Speaker’s chair,” stated NRCC spokeswoman Andrea Bozek.