Protesters crash ‘Fix the Debt’ party

Writing in The Nation, Allison Kilkenny previewed the Granite Staters preparing to confront Honeywell CEO David Cote during today’s Fix the Debt forum at St. Anselm College:

Seniors and disabled veterans are planning today to crash a “Fix the Debt” party in New Hampshire hosted by Honeywell CEO David Cote. Fix the Debt, an organization comprised of many of the country’s richest and most powerful CEOs, pushes the case for cutting Social Security and Medicare as well as lowering the corporate income tax rate.

As such, the organization—and subsequent party—caught the eye of the anti–corporate tax-dodging group US Uncut and the new group Flip the Debt. … The two tax accountability groups have organized the protest, which will include seniors and disabled vets sharing their stories about how they survive on programs like Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, then handing over their Social Security checks to Cote.

They will demand that Cote, a spokesperson for Fix the Debt, answer the question: Why are you demanding that we reduce the deficit by cutting critical social programs, when your own company practices tax-dodging that has contributed millions to the national debt?

And crash the party they did.

New Hampshire Alliance for Retired Americans president Charlie Balban and board member Jane Lang confronted Cote politely:


Flip the Debt’s Mark Provost, not so politely:

Matt Lawrence and I just brought a 'Fix the Debt' conference to a halt, calling out Honeywell CEO and tax dodger David Cote in front of the whole room. As Bernie Sanders said, 'Corporations love America when it comes to corporate welfare, but when it comes to paying taxes, they want nothing to do with this country.'

While I was calling out Honeywell's CEO for paying no taxes, former Congressman Paul William Hodes jumped to the defense of the CEO and yelled at me. What was he doing there anyway, he is totally irrelevant to NH politics now.

Union Leader Issues Correction and Withdraws Editorial

An editorial that ran in the August 11 Union Leader was removed from the web after a firestorm of criticism. The column praised Rep. Frank Guinta for holding town hall meetings “even though he knew full well that he was going to take flak” for his votes on the budget and raising the debt ceiling.

For that alone, he is an improvement upon his predecessor. After they voted for Obamacare in March of 2010, then Reps. Carol Shea-Porter and Paul Hodes … took Speaker Nacy Pelosi’s advice not to hold big, open meetings in which lots of non-supporters would get to yell at them.

The claim that Shea-Porter and Hodes did not hold town hall meetings was patently false, as Dean Barker pointed out.

Of course, Shea-Porter had held EIGHT town halls just prior to that.

Why so many? It came on the heels of the historic health care vote, and despite the bogus hay made earlier by the dishonest in a similar venue, despite knowing that the Tea People were determined to make theatre out of every one, the Congresswoman was adamant about reaching out to her constituents’ questions about this legislation.

The facts were immediately challenged on the Union Leader web site and on Twitter. Editorial page editor Drew Cline eventually issued a correction on Twitter and the piece was removed from the web.

Correx: Today’s lead editorial erred in stating that Shea-Porter, Hodes did not hold town hall meetings after the health care vote. They did

Barker concludes:

My takeaway is that when you know you will never be given a fair shake by certain sectors of the media, you cannot give one inch when it come to errors, distortions, lies, etc… Rapid response is required, always.

Quote of the Day: Hodes on Tax Cut Compromise

“I have reviewed the agreement reached by the President and Republican leaders on tax cuts, and I will support this agreement. … [T]he President has shown real leadership in reaching a deal that gives almost 90% of the benefits to the middle class and unemployed people. At the end of the day, this is about the economy, plain and simple.

“[W]e must give help to the 2 million unemployed Americans who are about to lose assistance. We must give tax cuts to the middle class and small businesses to help them and to help get our economy moving. We must create jobs. This deal achieves these vital goals, saving typical middle class families thousands of dollars in taxes and creating over a million jobs according to top economists. We should now come together and pass it.”

—Rep. Paul Hodes on why he supports President Obama’s tax cut compromise.

Shea-Porter Opposes Tax Cut Compromise

Outgoing New Hampshire Rep. Carol Shea-Porter, along with 53 other progressive Democrats, signed a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi opposing President Obama’s tax cut compromise. The letter calls the proposal “fiscally irresponsible” and “grossly unfair.” As of this morning, outgoing Rep. Paul Hodes and Sen. Judd Gregg are undecided. 

Full contents of letter below the fold.

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Someone’s in the Kitchen with Dinah

Another chef in Congress, Rep. Paul Hodes (D-N.H.), is thrilled that his dining room table is finally long enough for the entire family — some 20 Hodes relatives — to gather around.

He’ll be in the kitchen for at least part of the day, making his special stuffing with fresh cranberries and an original recipe for whisky gravy.

Hodes’ Hotdog Ad: Bad, Really Bad

Hotline On Call adds insult to injury by naming Paul Hodes’ "Hotdog" ad one of the 10 worst campaign ads of 2010. No argument here.

New Hampshire Rep. Paul Hodes' (D) Senate campaign never gained much ground on Sen.-elect Kelly Ayotte (R) and this ad didn’t help. Hodes’ image wasn’t well defined throughout the campaign and this ad, featuring a hot dog eating contest, failed to present why Hodes was the better candidate. Give it a watch and see if you can focus on anything but the guys in the background scarfing down hot dogs and recall anything Hodes says.

Paul Hodes: Vignette

The Hill:

Rep. Paul Hodes (D-N.H.) broke House chamber rules during the first floor vote last week, but it’s safe to say he will avoid punishment.

Hodes, who lost his bid for the Senate, used his iPhone camera to snap a shot of outgoing Rep. Steve Kagen (D-Wis.) posing in the center aisle with the Speaker’s rostrum in the background.

A House chamber security member rushed up to the pair after a long flash went off: No picture-taking is allowed on the House floor. Period.

When it became apparent that the legislators were merely documenting their last few weeks in office, the security member opted not to pursue the matter.

Tags: Paul Hodes

WMUR/UNH Poll: Ayotte (R) 54%, Hodes (D) 36%

The WMUR/UNH poll shows Kelly Ayotte is pulling away from Rep. Paul Hodes, leading by a solid 54% to 36% margin. Andy Smith, director of UNH Survey Center, says the momentum is all in Ayotte’s direction.

"The Senate race is getting a little bit out of hand here," Smith said. "We’re seeing Kelly Ayotte, who’s led this entire race, is now holding a fairly significant lead."

The Granite State Poll is sponsored by WMUR-TV and conducted by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center. The results are based on telephone interviews of 885 likely voters with a +/- 3.3% margin of error. The survey was conducted on October 27-31, 2010.

PPP NH-Sen Poll: Ayotte (R) 56%, Hodes (D) 41%

The latest survey from Public Policy Polling has Republican Kelly Ayotte maintaining a 15-point lead (56% - 41%) over Rep. Paul Hodes in the race for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Judd Greg. The results are consistent with those from the WMUR Granite State Poll two weeks ago. Hodes has never led in the race.

PPP surveyed 1,308 likely voters on October 27-29.. The margin of error is

Can John Lynch Help Paul Hodes?

Today’s WMUR Granite State Poll is the third survey in 10 days to show Gov. John Lynch with a double-digit lead over Republican John Stephen. Writing in Hotline On Call, Jamie Shufflebarger reminds us what a win of that magnitude could mean for the rest of the Democratic ticket. 

Washington’s attention has been firmly focused on the battle over control of Congress. … But on the state level, there are numerous tight gubernatorial races capturing voters’ attention. And those statewide races might have more influence on Senate results than any party committee or outside group.

Voters tend to care more about who their governor is than their Congressional representation, mostly because state policy matters affect their pocketbooks to a greater degree. … [I]n a close race, whether or not a Senate candidate will win may depend on their gubernatorial ticket mate’s turnout operation.

WMUR Granite State Poll: Ayotte 50%, Hodes 35%

The race for the U.S. Senate between Republican Kelly Ayotte and Democrat Rep. Paul Hodes is unchanged in today’s WMUR Granite State Poll. Ayotte leads Hodes among likely voters 50% - 35%, exactly the same margin as last month’s survey. Ayotte maintains large leads among men (+17 points) and undeclared voters (+20 points).

Andy Smith: 

"If you look at those who say they will definitely vote in the election, she’s leading by 53 to 34 percent. … The energy is really there among Republicans, and it’s going for Ayotte right now."

James Pindell:

"This is becoming a a race that is starting to wind down." 

The Granite State Poll is sponsored by WMUR-TV and conducted by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center. The results are based on telephone interviews of 709 likely voters with a +/-3.7% margin of error. The survey was conducted on October 7-12, 2010.

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