If you were to tell me that a Democrat congressional candidate in New Hampshire violently snatched a video camera from an opposing campaign’s tracker and shouted “F him,” I would have bet you it was Carol Shea-Porter. Shea-Porter appears so full of rage and utter disgust for anyone who disagrees with her, it is a small wonder she has yet to be the center of a violent altercation while on the campaign trail.
Instead, that candidate was Ann McLane Kuster, the Democrat candidate in New Hampshire’s second congressional district who doesn’t stop trying to convince voters on the stump that she works well with others.
It is appropriate that the video was shot outside of the State House, where Kuster plied her craft as a career lobbyist for so many years. But while such strong arm tactics may have served Kuster’s lobbying clients well, they ought to disqualify her for high public office.
Kuster claims the Bass staffer who videotaped her was “harassing” her. That is not what appears on camera. Instead we see a public figure in a public location, clearly unhappy that she is being tracked though it is a common campaign practice, using aggressive tactics and foul language. Perhaps she had a bad day on the campaign trail. Perhaps she isn’t the person she claims to be in her campaign materials. Whatever the reason, Kuster’s behavior is beneath the dignity of a Member of Congress. And that, sad to say, is already a low bar.
Let’s put this plainly. If Ann Kuster doesn’t like facing public scrutiny then she should drop out of the race for Congress. The person shooting the video was well within his rights to video tape a public figure in a public environment. She had no right to forcibly take his video camera. This would be true if Kuster were a Republican, a Libertarian or a member of any other political party. The day we lose our right to scrutinize politicians is the day we lose our final freedoms.