NH GOP - NH Democrat Freshmen Continue to Bend and Break House Ethics Rules

Today A Congressional Staffer From Representative Paul Hodes’ Federal Office Emailed A Request For Political Campaign Contributions

New Hampshire Republican Party Chairman Fergus Cullen: “If this email was sent from a government computer, it would constitute an expressed violation of House Ethics Rules. However, using an official government staff member to solicit political campaign contributions, at the very least, gives the appearance of impropriety. While certain political activities are permissible by Congressional staffers on their own time, I think we’re beginning to see a pattern of bad behavior from our two Democratic Representatives. Paul Hodes and Carol Shea-Porter decried corruption in Washington during their campaigns, but now seem content to bend and break the rules they swore to uphold.”

This Morning, Paul Brown, A Staffer For Paul Hodes Sent Out A Campaign Email In Which He Called Himself Hodes’ Political Director. (Paul Hodes for Congress Email, “Paul Hodes on MSNBC at 11:00 AM EST TODAY!,”September 25, 2007)

Last Year Brown Was On The Payroll For Hodes’ Campaign. (Center For Responsive Politics, www.opensecrets.org,Accessed September 25, 2007)

But Brown Is Currently On The Official Payroll In Hodes’ Federal Office – Not His Campaign. (LegistormWebsite, www.legistorm.com/person/Patrick_D_Brown/34237.html,Accessed September 25, 2007; Center For Responsive Politics, www.opensecrets.org, Accessed September25, 2007)

In His Email, Brown Made A Direct Request For Campaign Contributions. “The end of the financial quarter is this Sunday at midnight, September 30. To have the best showing possible, we need to raise $25,000 on-line- and your gift today will help send a clear message to the GOP that the 2nd District is represented best when represented by Paul Hodes. If you are interested in helping out at the end of this quarter you can contribute at our website www.hodesforcongress.com.” (Paul Hodes for Congress Email, “Paul Hodes on MSNBC at 11:00 AM EST TODAY!,” September 25, 2007)

This Isn’t The First Time Hodes And The State’s Other Representative Carol Shea-Porter Have Bent Or Broken House Ethics Rules

In June 2007, Hodes Removed A Speech The Congressman Made To The State Democratic Party Convention That Was Deemed “Too Partisan” For An Official Congressional Website. “Rep. Paul Hodes' staff yesterday removed from his official, taxpayer-funded Web site a speech labeled a ‘partisan rallying call’ by a watchdog group founded by former Republican operatives. Bergen Kenney, a spokesman for the freshman Democrats, said she posted the speech two weeks ago believing that it did not violate House rules, as alleged by the Majority Accountability Project. But after checking with the staff of the House Committee on Standards and Official Conduct, Hodes chief of staff Dana Houle said the speech was ‘not a campaign thing but it was too partisan to leave on the Web site. We don't need to have it there.’ The speech in question was delivered by Hodes to the state Democratic Party convention in Concord on June 2.” (John DiStaso, “Hodes' WebSite Pulls Speech,” Union Leader ,June 19, 2007)

In April 2007, Shea-Porter Posted Her Campaign Reelection Announcement On Her Congressional Website. “In April, the staff of Hodes' Democratic freshman colleague, Rep. Carol Shea-Porter, removed from her official Web site a news release stating her plans to seek reelection in 2008. Shea-Porter chief of staff Harry Gural called it  ‘an inadvertent error’ by an inexperienced intern.”

Fergus Cullen

Chairman, New Hampshire Republican Party

10 Water Street