SEABROOK – There’s no two ways about it: Democrats in New Hampshire had a very good day at the polls on Tuesday after being swept out of office in the 2010 state election. Even traditionally Republican Seabrook gave them a hand.
Seabrook helped former state Sen. Maggie Hassan, D-Exeter, take over the Governor’s Office from four-term Democrat John Lynch. And Republicans lost their majority in the House of Representatives with a little nudge from Seabrook, nearly lost their majority in the state Senate and lost a majority on New Hampshire’s powerful Executive Council.
Adding to the joy among the Blue party, Democrats Carol Shea-Porter and Annie Kuster are going to Washington, D.C., to represent New Hampshire in the 1st and 2nd Congressional districts, respectively. In hard-fought campaigns, the women defeated two incumbent Republicans, Frank Guinta and Charlie Bass.
Helping Shea-Porter eke out her narrow 49 to 46 percent win over Guinta were Seabrook voters and its Libertarian selectman, Brendan Kelly, who ran in the race and may have siphoned off votes. Kelly earned more than 12,000 votes district-wide, equaling more than 4 percent of the overall tally.
State Legistature evens out
At last count, Democrats are expected to take at least 217 of the 400 seats in the state House of Representatives. The change in power will take the gavel out of the hands of current Republican Speaker of the House William O’Brien, who has been accused of being a domineering leader who punished more moderate Republicans who disagreed with his very conservative views.
Bucking the trend, Seabrook is sending three Republicans to the House to represent them in Rockingham District 20. Three local candidates, all Republicans, ran unopposed for the three seats available in that district. Incumbents and husband and wife team Koko and Amy Perkins will be heading back to Concord for their third term, and Selectman Aboul Khan will join them for his first, while keeping his seat on the Board of Selectmen.