Concord, NH - Just days after Republican Representative Susan Emerson's anti-state house bullying bill was voted down by Bill O'Brien's Tea Party controlled House, it is becoming apparent that O'Brien's style of leadership has quickly become the norm for Republicans in New Hampshire.
This Monday, the Portsmouth Republican Party is scheduled to hold a forum on election fraud. Overlooking the fact that the only election fraud in New Hampshire history was committed last January by Republican operatives, voter fraud is a legitimate issue that should be discussed openly and publicly in front of New Hampshire voters.
Only, Monday's meeting is not open to the public. Despite booking space in the Portsmouth Public Library, Monday's meeting is "only for those on the Republican City Committee list and their guests."
So why the need for the secret meeting?
"I don't know why the Portsmouth Republican Party feels the need to hold meetings on such an important issue in private," said New Hampshire Democratic Party Chair Ray Buckley. "But given that they are merely following the the example set by the de facto leader of New Hampshire Republicans, it is hardly surprising."
Following the example of Speaker O'Brien, a man who has previously closed the House gallery to observers in violation of the New Hampshire Constitution, a man who has suspend House sessions so leadership can privately strong arm dissenting party members into submission, its easy to understand why Portsmouth Republicans would choose to hold their voter fraud meetings behind closed doors.
"Bill O'Brien's back room bully style of politics has been embraced by NH Republicans lock, stock and barrel. The real voter fraud in NH occurred in 2010 when Republicans promised to focus on jobs," said Buckley. "That is the biggest voter fraud in NH's history.