Retired General Advances to Battle New Hampshire Incumbent Hassan for US Senate Seat
Retired General Advances to Battle New Hampshire Incumbent Hassan for US Senate Seat

By Nanette Holt

Retired Army Brig. Gen. Don Bolduc fought past 10 candidates to win New Hampshire’s Republican primary for U.S. Senate on Sept. 13.

By 5:05 a.m. ET on Wednesday, Bolduc claimed more than 37 percent of the vote, with more than 88 percent of the votes reported, according to Decision Desk HQ.

Meanwhile, incumbent Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) easily won the Democratic primary with more than 93 percent of the vote.

Bolduc will face Hassan and Libertarian Jeremy Kauffman in the general election on Nov. 8.

U.S. Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) speaks at a Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs/Rules and Administration Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington on March 3, 2021. (Shawn Thew/Pool via Getty Images)

Hassan, who’s finishing her first term, holds a slight edge in the fall, according to political forecasters who weigh in on races around the country. But a sagging approval rating with N.H. voters has left her “vulnerable” to possible defeat, pundits say.

So money for advertising is expected to flow into the state from both major parties over the next eight weeks, as they struggle to pull ahead with voters before Election Day.

Until recently, the country’s leading forecasters predicted control of the U.S. Senate would flip back to Republicans, who were expected to pick up 1-3 seats in the November election.

Now, clear leads in several races have evaporated, and forecasters no longer agree on which are considered toss-ups.

Heisman Trophy winner and Republican nominee for U.S. Senate Herschel Walker speaks at a rally on May 23 in Athens, Ga. (Photo by Megan Varner/Getty Images)

Races in Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin seem to teeter on the edge of going in either direction. Politicos use the words “tight” and “close” to describe them.

In New Hampshire, Hassan, a former governor of the state, has been criticized by Republicans for consistently voting with President Joe Biden. But the day before the primary, she emphasized her “bipartisan” achievements.

On Sept. 7, she wrote in a post on Twitter, “I helped pass the Inflation Reduction Act to lower health care costs and drive down prescription drug prices.”

That’s a reason to vote against her, said Bolduc.

“First of all, I don’t think that was the name of the bill,” Bolduc said in a Republican debate ahead of the primary on Aug. 24. “I think it was the IRS Expansion Bill. That’s what I think it is. And another tax bill. And that’s the problem we have—out-of-control spending.”

“Bidenflation” is the biggest problem in his state, Bolduc reiterated in a post on Twitter on Sept. 8. He wrote that residents “can’t think about anything else until the price of food and energy is lowered.”

With Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) looking on, President Joe Biden hands Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) the pen he used to sign into law the so-called Inflation Reduction Act at the White House on Aug. 16. The law devotes hundreds of billions of dollars to fostering “green” energy, and added 87,000 new IRS agents. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Before running for office, Bolduc served 10 tours in Afghanistan, and was honored with two Purple Hearts and five Bronze Star medals.

Critics have said his ultra-conservative stance on issues could make him less successful against Hassan than a more moderate Republican might be.

Bolduc has insisted former President Donald Trump won the 2020 presidential election. He has spoken forcefully about the need to close the country’s southern border and secure it by completing Trump’s wall.

He has advocated for reforming Medicare to make it “patient-focused,” supports policies to make the U.S. energy independent. No more money should go to Ukraine without a justifiable strategy that can be “explained to the American people,” Bolduc said.

The “biggest threat” to America’s future is China and the Chinese Communist Party, Bolduc said. The U.S. must require fair trade with China, and protect businesses against Chinese theft of intellectual property. China, he said, should no longer be allowed to snap up American farmland, maintain a presence on college campuses, or influence businesses through stock purchases.

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