ANALYSIS: Maggie Hassan Says NH Voters ‘Are Slipping Into Authoritarianism’


When Senator Maggie Hassan says she’s filibustered to “protect the wonderful election we have in New Hampshire,” the obvious question is, “Protect them from whom?” “

Hassan made the comment to WMUR in an interview the day after her surprise announcement by the U.S. Senate prosecution that she was doing a 180 on filibuster. The interview was part of an effort by New Hampshire Democrats to fend off some of the political fires his sudden overthrow had sparked. Republicans had a day on the ground pointing out that not only did Hassan write a letter in 2017 imploring then-Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) To maintain the filibuster, she participated to over 300 of them in the past year. of the Trump presidency.

“Where is the moral compass here?” Governor Chris Sununu asked WGIR radio on Friday, noting that Hassan had not presented a policy or philosophical reason to change his position on filibuster. It seemed purely political.

“There are Democrats in this state who are furious with Senator Hassan because she said that our elections [in New Hampshire] cannot be trusted and should be handed over to Washington, DC, ”Sununu added.

Is that what Hassan says?

His ground speech Thursday night certainly contained themes of the Trumpian conspiracy, predicting an election day dystopia in which our ballots would not be counted and the results would be stolen.

Again, here in New Hampshire, who does Hassan think was the thief?

“If we can’t protect the wonderful election we have in New Hampshire, then we are all facing a slide into authoritarianism,” Hassan told WMUR. “Where the people who are elected by supporters who overthrow our elections are further and further removed from the will of the people. “

“What I want to make sure is that this type of impartial election is preserved and protected,” she added.

Who is she protecting our elections from in New Hampshire? Is Maggie Hassan saying that the Granite State elections are threatened by local “authoritarians” who “will overthrow our elections”?

That’s a strange claim to make in a state that still has some of the highest levels of voter turnout in the country, and does so with the fewest problems. Will any citizen of the state – other than residents of Bedford, perhaps – go to bed at night fearing that their ballot will not be counted in the next election?

Hassan has few details to offer regarding these alleged electoral issues or invisible threats to the ballot in Granite State. She mentioned “partisan gerrymandering,” which has been practiced in New Hampshire and the rest of America since the founding of the nation (the term “gerrymander” comes from the election of 1812). According to the Washington Post, the nation’s most gerrymandered district is in Maryland, where a Democratic-controlled legislature has just overridden a Republican governor’s veto over his extreme partisan redistribution.

Oddly enough, Democrats complain about threats to our democracy in Maryland, Illinois or New York – all hotbeds of “partisan gerrymandering.”

The main point of contention remains Hassan’s repeated suggestions that the people of New Hampshire cannot be trusted to oversee elections in New Hampshire, that they need federal mandates to protect them from “authoritarianism.” growing from their fellow Granite Staters.

The premise of federalism is that the fact that each state holds its own elections makes it more difficult for an authoritarian to use the system to seize power. Should New Hampshire have 15 days of early voting? Should we use taxpayer dollars to pay for campaign attack ads? Should elections be largely held in person at a polling station, or should there be a postal voting system on demand?

Right now, these are all decisions made by the people of New Hampshire, for the state of New Hampshire, through our elected legislature. Hassan does not trust this system. She wants these decisions made for New Hampshire and all the other states by Congress.

Otherwise, here are the authoritarians.

Do the Granite Staters still trust each other to make these decisions? This is a question New Hampshire voters must answer.

As long as they are still allowed to do so.


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