Former top Democratic lawmaker in New Hampshire hasn't 'forgotten' how Biden, DNC, attempted to strip state of famed primary position

March 12, 2024
by
Ben Marquis

There appears to still be hard feelings among some New Hampshire Democrats after President Joe Biden and the Democratic National Committee dissed the Granite State in this year's presidential primary cycle.

That includes former State House Speaker Steve Shurtleff (D-NH), who recently indicated that while he has forgiven Biden and the DNC, the overt slight of his state will never be forgotten, the Washington Examiner reported.

Biden and the DNC decided last year to alter the Democratic primary schedule for explicitly racial reasons and attempted to push predominately white New Hampshire, where Biden performed poorly in 2020, out of its traditional first-in-the-nation spot in favor of the more diverse South Carolina, whose large black population helped Biden win the 2020 nomination.

"I forgive, but I haven’t forgotten"

In a Monday interview with Fox News, former Speaker Shurtleff indicated that while he was likely to vote for President Biden's re-election in November over former President Donald Trump, he was still displeased with how Biden and the DNC had handled the New Hampshire primary election.

"I forgive, but I haven’t forgotten how New Hampshire was treated," Shurtleff, a longtime Biden supporter, told the outlet.

For nearly a century, and as required by state law for the past half-century, New Hampshire has been the first state to hold its primary elections.

As such, when the DNC altered the primary schedule at Biden's suggestion to place South Carolina first and pushed New Hampshire back on the calendar, the Granite State refused to comply and proceeded with its first-in-the-nation election despite threats of consequences and repercussions from the Democratic Party's apparatus.

Shurtleff backed Phillips over Biden in unsanctioned primary

President Biden ultimately won the New Hampshire primary even though his name did not appear on the ballot and he never once campaigned in the state during the current election cycle.

That victory was due to a successful write-in campaign by grassroots activists backed by some local Democratic leaders -- an effort that former Speaker Shurtleff was not involved in.

Instead, according to a November 2023 report from the Concord Monitor, Shurtleff endorsed and campaigned on behalf of longshot candidate Rep. Dean Phillips (D-MN), a move that was "90%" due to Biden and the DNC dissing the Granite State with the altered primary schedule.

Shurtleff said at that time, "I’m so proud of our primary. We take it very seriously," and added, "I was very upset with what the president tried to do."

Shurtleff will now "most likely" vote for Biden against Trump

Rep. Phillips has since ended his futile campaign to supplant President Biden as the Democratic nominee, and it now seems all but certain that Biden will face former President Trump in November in a rematch of the 2020 election -- a prospective face-off that Trump currently leads in the national polls.

With that in mind, former Speaker Shurtleff told Fox News, "We’ve got to move on, and we’ve got an election coming up, and I’m concerned about the Trump candidacy, so I’ll most likely be voting for Joe Biden," and added, "In a comparison between Joe Biden and Donald Trump, it scares me to think what would happen to our country under another Trump presidency."

The outlet also noted that Biden, who had not visited New Hampshire since April 2022, finally returned to the Granite State on Monday for a campaign event in which he highlighted his purported accomplishments and urged voters to re-elect him to another term in the White House.

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