Updated: State Democrats choose Bill Shaheen for key DNC post



MONDAY,  Dec. 15:


Attorney and veteran Democratic activist Bill Shaheen easily won the contest to represent the state party on the Democratic National Committee on Sunday.


At a Democratic State Committee meeting in Portsmouth, Shaheen defeated activist Roger Tilton Milford and Rep. Tim Smith of Mancheter to fill 16 month remaining in the unexpired term of former state Sen. Peter Burling, who has resigned his post as Democratic National Committeeman.


According to sources, Shaheen received  137 voters, to two for Tilton, while Smith receive no votes.


Shaheen, the husband of Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, was a campaign chair of Hillary Clinton’s  2008 presidential campaign but resigned in late 2007 after making remarks about Barack Obama’s admitted drug use as a youth. Shaheen said the Republicans would use that admission attack Obama should he win the Democratic presidential nomination.


Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a longtime friend and supporter of Hillary and former President Bill Clinton, spoke to the group, congratulating the NHDP for resisting the Republcian tide that swept much of the rest of the country on Election Day.


The state committee also heard reports on its midterm election operations.


While Republican won back control of the U.S. Senate nationally, Sen. Jeanne Shaheen won reelection. Rep. Ann Kuster also won reelection, while Rep. Carol Shea-Porter was defeated by Republican Frank Guinta.


Republicans also won back control of the New Hampshire House and Executive Council, and increased their state Senate majority by one, to 14-10.


(Our earlier report follows.)


FRIDAY, Dec. 12:


CONCORD — The state Democratic Party is set to hold a state committee meeting on Sunday in Portsmouth to elect a new representative on the Democratic National Committee, but it has also set its election for other top state party officers for March 7.


State party chairman Raymond Buckley has not yet said whether he will seek a fifth term, but there has been no indication that he will not run again.


More immediately, on Sunday, the Democratic State Committee will hold a meeting at the Portsmouth Harbor Events & Conference Center, 100 Deer St., in Portsmout, beginning at 3 p.m. The committee will elect a Democratic National Committeeman to succeed and fill the unexpired term of former state Sen. Peter Burling, who recently announced he will resign.


Running for the Burling seat are Bill Shaheen, husband of Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, as well as Roger Tilton of  Milford and state Rep. Tim Smith, who is in his second term representing Manchester’s Ward 10. In accordance with DNC rules, it will be an open vote.
The committee will hear from Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a longtime friend and ally of Hillary and former President Bill Clinton.


In a memo to state committee members this morning, Buckley noted that “New Hampshire Democrats bucked the national trend and we were able to be successful in re-electing Governor Hassan, Senator Shaheen and Congresswoman Kuster. While we can be incredibly thankful for the victories we did celebrate we have much work to do to continue to make our party stronger at every level.”


Buckley reported that the NHDP executive committee recently decided to set the date of the next state committee meeting. For Saturday, March 7, at 10 a.m. at a location to be announded. At that meeting, the state committee will elect officers for two-year terms: Chair, First Vice-Chair, Second Vice-Chair, Secretary, Treasurer, and Legal Counsel. Six members of the party’s rules committee will also be elected.


Buckley wrote that interested candidates for the party officer positions may file a declaration of candidacy at the state party office through Jan. 15 at 5 p.m.


Buckley also reminded committee members that every local Democratic committee “is required to meet between January 1 and March 31 to elect new officers and delegates to the state conventions. Every county committee must meet to elect new officers between April 1 and June 31.”


He wrote that the party recently hired strategist Ian Moskowitz as Political Director to coordinate the meetings.

Author: John DiStaso

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