National Republicans are going all in to flip New Hampshire’s Senate seat and take back the Senate majority, the party’s top candidate recruiter said Wednesday.
In a conference call with Granite State conservative activists and political leaders, NRSC Chairman Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) was critical of President Joe Biden’s policies and predicted their unpopularity will pay dividends at the ballot box in next year’s midterm elections.
“We can pick up seats all across the country because the Biden agenda is not popular.” Scott said.
Scott, who has been actively recruiting New Hampshire’s popular Republican Gov. Chris Sununu to run for the Senate, predicted the GOP will oust Sen. Maggie Hassan in 2022.
“We believe we’re going to pick up New Hampshire,” Scott said. “Hassan is clearly somebody we can beat. She’s way too liberal for New Hampshire… as we explain her votes, I think it’s going to be very difficult for her to win re-election.”
Recent polling from the University of New Hampshire and St. Anselm’s College backs up Scott’s belief that Hassan is in a tough spot.
Last month, a UNH poll showed Sununu would beat Hassan. The same poll showed Hassan and former Sen. Kelly Ayotte, who lost to Hassan by the slimmest of margins in 2016, are in a “statistical tie” in a rematch for the seat.
In more bad news for Hassan, a poll from St. Anselm’s College last month showed 47 percent of Granite Staters want her to be replaced, and only 39 percent want to see her returned to Washington.
Scott believes Biden’s agenda, which Hassan has voted in near lockstep with thus far, is unpopular and the reason her electoral prospects aren’t looking good.
“HR 1, this federal government takeover of election laws, is not popular with Republicans, independents, or Democrats. The Biden agenda is not popular with Republicans, independents, or Democrats… and we’re going to fight in every state,” Scott said.
According to polling from the NRSC, Scott is correct in saying Americans are opposed to the Biden agenda.
In an internal poll shared with NHJournal, many aspects of H.R. 1, which was co-sponsored by Hassan and NH senior Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, are very unpopular with voters across the country.
H.R. 1 would ban states from requiring government-issued ID cards to vote. According to their polling, 77 percent of Americans support voter ID requirements — including 81 percent of independents, a key voting block in New Hampshire.
As NHJournal has reported, H.R. 1 give candidates like Hassan and Rep. Chris Pappas up to $5 million in taxpayer dollars to fund their political campaigns, money that can be spent on attack ads, or expensive hotel rooms and meals.
According to the polling, 56 percent of Americans are opposed to taxpayer dollars being used for partisan political campaigns.
“We clearly have the opportunity to pick up New Hampshire, Nevada, Arizona, and Georgia. But I think we’re going to be able to compete in all states,” Scott said.
Sununu says he likely won’t make a decision about challenging Hassan — or running for a fourth term as governor or getting out of politics altogether — until this summer. And his relationship with Florida’s Sen. Scott isn’t completely smooth.
Earlier this month, Scott wrote a letter to Republican governors like Sununu urging them to “reject and return any federal funding in excess of your reimbursable COVID-19 related expenses.
“While the governor had serious concerns that more than half of the spending in the relief package wasn’t targeted to COVID, he considers the call to refuse the stimulus money to be foolish,” said Sununu spokesperson Ben Vihstadt in response.