Concord, N.H. – As the Frank Guinta problem Kelly Ayotte created by propping him up throughout his years of lies continues, Guinta dodged questions in Alton about accepting illegal campaign contributions and lying to Granite Staters for five years.
See coverage roundup below:
Laconia Citizen: Guinta dodges questions on finance scandal in Alton
U.S. Rep. Frank Guinta ducked questions about a recent fine from the Federal Election Commission during a town hall meeting in Alton, on Saturday.
Held in the Gilman Library, the event was Guinta’s first time speaking to a group of constituents since the commission ruled he accepted $355,000 in illegal campaign contributions from his parents.
Guinta has since been ordered to pay a fine of $15,000 and repay the money back to his parents. He claims money belonged to him, as he made contributions and managed a “family pot” of finances.
Outside the library, six protestors held signs reading “Goodbye Frank,” Frank, your mom wants her money back,” and “Frank Guinta is a damned liar,” a reference to an editorial published in the New Hampshire Union Leader.
“We’re here to ask Frank Guinta to do the right thing and resign,” said Barnstead resident Tess Smith. “We just feel that his own party isn’t supporting him anymore, he needs to resign.”
… Democratic congressional candidate Shawn O’Connor rose and approached Guinta with petitions he said were signed by more than 4,000 Granite Staters calling for his resignation. Flanked by his staff, Guinta immediately left the room, got in his car and left while being chased by members of the press.
Back in the library, O’Connor called the town hall meeting a “sham” and told a huddle group of reporters that he tried several times to ask Guinta questions but was never called on.
“Clearly you could see that the strategy here was to talk a lot at the beginning and then after that to talk as he could on each planted question so that he didn’t have to take any unplanted questions,” O’Connor said.
When asked whether O’Connor believed Guinta staffers deliberately invited people and predetermined who would be called on, he replied that there was “something awry.”
“It certainly appeared to be one (a plant) to me,” O’Connor said. “I can’t speak for what’s going on in the Guinta campaign.” [Full story]
Concord Monitor: Frank Guinta did not address FEC violations in his first town hall since findings were released
U.S. Rep. Frank Guinta saved about a half hour of his town hall meetingSaturday morning for questions from the public.
… But as the town hall drew to a close, Guinta did not take the time to respond to the final comment from an audience member: a call for his resignation.
“Congressman Guinta, I have here a petition signed by 4,000 people who have asked you to resign. I’d like to give it to you,” said Shawn O’Connor, a Bedford Democrat who is challenging Guinta for his first congressional district seat in the 2016 election, while holding a manila envelope. Guinta, who had additional events scheduled to attend after the town hall, exited the room without responding to O’Connor.
… Before entering the library, Horrigan stood with a sign that read “Frank Guinta is a damned liar,” the quote from the New Hampshire Union Leader’s six-word editorial in May. Holding signs with Horrigan were Lew Henry of Gilmanton Iron Works and Steve and Tess Smith of Center Barnstead, with messages such as “Frank, your mom wants her money back” and “Frank, what’s in your wallet?”
Bob Perry of Strafford stood nearby, also holding a protest sign. For five years, he has been following “the continuing saga of the campaign finance violations,” he said.
“This is no small matter,” he said. “People should be outraged.” [Full story]
WMUR: Guinta holds first event since backlash over illegal campaign funds
… Protesters lined the front steps of the Gilman Library holding signs and looking for answers.
"People complain about the corruption in Washington. We have this opportunity here to do something about it," said Bob Perry, of Strafford.
Some hoped to talk with Guinta after the federal election commission released its report showing he used funds from his parents’ bank account that far exceeded the legal contribution limit.
"It’s sort of amazing that he hasn't resigned and amazing simply that he hasn't addressed the issue at all," said Rep. Timothy Horrigan, D-Durham.
… O’Connor, the only declared Democratic challenger for the 2016 election, said he tried to ask Guinta about why he hasn't resigned but he said he wasn't asked to speak.
"There were many people in the room with their hands up but the only people that were called were people that weren't even raising their hands who had been planted in the room," he said. [Full story]
NH1: Guinta holds first town hall since financial scandal
… At his first town hall since the scandal, Guinta did not make mention of the campaign finance investigation. He took only five questions during the one-hour discussion.
… Several protesters held signs outside, calling the Congressman a "liar" and demanded his resignation.
"I feel that he hasn't been honest," said Tess Smith. "And I'm still really disgusted that he called Carol Shea-Porter a liar." [Full story]