In stark similarity to 2014, when the NH House chose Shawn Jasper over former House Speaker Bill O'Brien, a "shadow caucus" has been organized called the House Republican Alliance. In 2014, O'Brien formed the Republican Majority Caucus, with a core of supporters and opened an office across from the State House. After the O'Brien led caucus failed in its attempt at a " shadow" government, they also failed to pay the rent and were almost $8,000 in arrears when they skipped town. I suspect many of O'Brien's minions are part of the new shadow caucus, but there is no public list that I can find, so we will probably never know who they are. Meanwhile, the landlord was left holding the bag.
Guilty by association? Judging by the current caucus membership and co-chairs, Laurie Sanborn and Glen Cordelli, the newly revived House Republican Alliance (HRA) represents the far right wing of the party and dances to the tune of the Koch brothers like marionettes. It's a group that deserves to be marginalized. Also and just like the case with O'Brien, Sanborn lost in a close vote to Jasper for NH House Speaker.
The HRA claim to be an advocacy group, but in reality and functionality, is no different from the failed Republican Majority Caucus. They want to insert their own policy leader, floor leader and whip in to every standing committee. For what purpose? According to an email she sent to WMUR: “I'd like to propose changes that will make us a formidable and effective voting block -- a true caucus. "
I would offer that " block" should be translated to mean " blockade" as they will most assuredly try to block any attempt at compromise and moderation that doesn't adhere to their extreme agenda.
In a response to WMUR, Jasper wrote that “She’s talking about a shadow caucus,” he said. “She’s talking about having whips and fundraising for a staff member to mentor people. It’s almost word for word what O’Brien did.”
Judging by the list of legislation already being proposed, the next two years could be a very bumpy ride for New Hampshire. And that is a shame. We have so much real and important work to do, and yet there are those that will continue to put political ideology ahead of what is in the best interest of we the people,