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July 16, 2010

Jeff Feingold is Editor of NH Business Review's print and on-line editions. He has been a business journalist for more than 25 years, and recognized by the Small Business Administration as National Small Business Journalist of the Year.

Bass and Hodes: Weakness of incumbency

If Congressman Paul Hodes’ problem is that he’s perceived as the “incumbent” in the U.S. Senate race, does that mean that Charlie Bass, the former congressman looking to regain his seat in the 2nd C.D., is perceived as an “incumbent” too?

If he is – and it’s not that much of a stretch to argue that he is – that’s gotta mean plenty of sleepless nights for the Bass folks in the weeks ahead.

Relationship wreck

Every so often, the media from “out there” shows just how their hit-and-run coverage of New Hampshire politics falls short.

Such was the case in The Boston Globe’s recent report on John Lynch’s re-election chances. In running down the obstacles to any clear sailing by the governor, reporter Brian Mooney actually referred to embattled Liquor Commissioner Mark Bodi – the man Lynch has left twisting in the wind – as the governor’s “friend.”

Wouldn’t “former friend” be more accurate?

Stranger things have happened

Sure, it’s a long shot, but wouldn’t it be something if the 1st C.D. race in November is between Democrat Carol Shea-Porter and Republican Bob Bestani – and she’s the one who’s viewed as more pro-Afghanistan war?

Salt on the wound

A recent Siena poll of 238 presidential scholars had some more bad news for poor ol’ Franklin Pierce.

The poll, which ranks the top presidents in American history, found that Pierce – the only president from New Hampshire – ranked fourth from the bottom, right behind James Buchanan and just ahead of George W. Bush.

To add insult to injury, it appears that in the fall – after all accreditation approvals are granted – Franklin Pierce Law Center will be no more. Instead, it will be called the University of New Hampshire School of Law.

What a revoltin’ development this is.

Hyperbole is Job 1

Hyperbole, as we know all too well, is the coin of the realm for politicians. Whatever they’re spouting off about – the economy, war and peace, immigration, soccer – our elected officials and wannabe elected officials can’t help but turn the rhetoric dial up to 11.

John Stephen earlier this month tried his best to keep the volume up with a claim that one in six New Hampshire residents is in some kind of indentured servitude because they “have to leave the state for a job.”

Besides trying to set back the cause of interstate commerce faster than you can say “Articles of Confederation,” and considering that thousands of New Hampshire residents commute out of state every day for higher-paying jobs along Route 128 in Massachusetts and the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Maine (to cite two examples), perhaps it would have been more accurate for the candidate to use the phrase, “choose to leave the state for a job.”

After all, he should know that as well as anyone. Consider that after he left state employment a couple of years ago, he found himself a job with The Lucas Group, a consulting firm whose offices are located at 116 Huntington Ave., Suite 504, Boston, Massachusetts.

And while you’re at it, pay no attention to that lowest-in-the-region unemployment rate behind the curtain.


Email - Jeff Feingold
Editor, New Hampshire Business Review


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