New Hampshire, Walter Mondale, Larry Drake discussed on The Brookings Cafeteria
County Anti Democratic Committee as the county chair. I'm in touch with the candidates or their staff when they come through through the will reach out to me it. Usually their staff and our county committee has hosted a number of the candidates for what we call meet and greets which is basically the candidate speaks for maybe twenty minutes and then the answer questions and we might have some refreshment. It's pretty informal. So I'm very interested in that and I try to arrange meet and greets or similar things should democrats can meet the candidates antedates and it's a way for hopefully people to get involved themselves to become active Democrats and so I'm always hoping that when people come out to see a candidate that they'll get active if they aren't already active or they'll stay active until a lot of my work just regular workers. County chair is to build up the committees in the different town. Drake also got involved in politics at a young age and he's been involved ever since well. I've been interested in politics. Ever since nineteen sixty eight when I was a junior in high school in northern New Jersey and I went to a anti-vietnam a Vietnam War rally in New York City in April one thousand nine hundred sixty eight and I've been active in politics one sort or another for all those years. I was active in my union. The American Federation government employees for many years when I worked at the Department of Labor. And so I'd I always voted democratic but I was not involved with the Party so joan and I moved to Portsmouth in September of two thousand and six and we got involved very quickly with the campaign of Carol Shea Porter who is running for Congress for the first time and so I got involved in her campaign and she won. That was a huge Democratic victory in two thousand deal. Yes and especially in New Hampshire. We want an amazing victory so I got involved in two thousand and seven with the Rockingham County Democratic Committee because we knew knew the chair person lenore patent and started attending meetings over the years. I became the treasurer and vice chair. And then in two thousand twelve I was elect the chair and ever since and I enjoyed. Drake doesn't personally make endorsements in primaries. which other county in town chairs do you but you can imagine? He's someone campaigns would bike on their side. Well I'm sure that they would like my endorsement but I made a decision several years ago that I would not make any endorsements in any Democratic primary. I think I can be a more effective chair if neutral because if you I've noticed ask that if you endorse somebody then people that are supporting other candidates may be a little suspicious. They're like are you rigging things to help you again. I know so I decided. Hey I'm not going to endorse anybody. I'm just I'm all about building the Party and getting ready for the general election so I'll just be supportive of all the candidates and you know whoever wins wins. And you know what makes it easier to get along with everybody. I'm not I'm not opposing anybody so elaine are these endorsements from town in county tourism important. Oh absolutely in general in elections for president endorsements. Don't matter very much. You know when you're talking about the November election but because New Hampshire is a retail politics state endorsements from people people who are active in their communities and have a lot of friends and neighbors in their communities are critically important so of course in the first thing that presidential candidates do is they look up the county chairs and the town chairs they look up precinct activists. They look up people who've worked in other presidential Campaigns and then try to convince them to get on their side. Maybe the most famous person. Whoever did this was current? Senator Jeanne Jeannie Shaheen Jeanne Shaheen worked for Senator Gary Hart Way back in nineteen eighty four when he won a surprise victory. Victory over vice president. Walter Mondale in New Hampshire and having Genie Shaheen on Gary Hart side was something that those of us who were in the Mondale campaign. I was in the Mondale campaign. Then were very jealous of and for good reason. GD She he knew how to introduce Gary Hart to New Hampshire and even though he didn't win the nomination of the Democratic Party in nineteen eighty four. He sure did give. Walter Mondale run for his money. Now we heard from Larry Drake and Ray Buckley about the deep passion for retail politics in New Hampshire which Buckley has been involved in since he was a teenager. I imagine that the same kind of commitment exists on the Republican side right. Oh absolutely the Republican voters the Republican activists in New Hampshire. There are every bit as committed to aid their political party. And be to keep New Hampshire first in the nation. This is one of the reasons. Is that New Hampshire has had so much success remaining first in the nation is that it is a bipartisan obsession. Democrats and Republicans like their first in the nation status also. They like the chance to meet Republican candidates and future presidents. There are lots of people like Ray Buckley. Luckily who remember meeting Jimmy Carter and there are Republicans who can remember meeting Ronald Reagan and George Bush. Both George Bush's as they came through New Hampshire. Sure so new. Hampshire is.