GOP pouring money into New Hampshire as tightening polls show prospect for a Senate pickup

The National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) announced a seven-figure ad buy earlier this week to support Bolduc.

Updated: October 28, 2022 - 4:01pm

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

Republicans are increasingly optimistic they can pick up a Senate seat in New Hampshire and are making a last-ditch financial push to bolster Trump-backed nominee Don Bolduc.

RealClearPolitics currently rates the race as a "toss up" and assigns Democratic Sen. Maggie Hassan a 3.4% lead overall. Hassan won the seat after narrowly ousting former Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte in 2016.

Bolduc emerged as the Republican nominee in September, following an intense primary contest. The Trump-backed Republican initially trailed Hassan by a wide margin, prompting the party establishment to look elsewhere for potential gains. The tightening polls, however, have Washington looking back in Bolduc's direction. 

The National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) announced a seven-figure ad buy earlier this week to support Bolduc, according to The Hill. Washington party operatives are also increasingly bullish about Bolduc's chances.

"He's within striking distance," one national GOP official told the outlet. "The environment is helping carry him even though he has practically no money of his own. We’ll have to see."

"Hassan is a very weak incumbent," he continued. "It’s a race where if the environment breaks nicely for Republicans, it could carry a Republican over the top. If he’s going to win, it’s going to be on the strength of the environment."

Bolduc's own campaign insists that the candidate's own efforts were paying dividends in the polls and drawing Washington's interest. "It's a dead-even race. Been that way for a while," campaign senior adviser Rick Wiley said. "The momentum is on our side. It’s been on our side."

"The secret weapon is Don Bolduc. He outhustles and outworks her. Why would you underestimate a battlefield general?... He just had to be given a chance," Wiley continued. Bolduc did not enjoy early support from the state's party leaders, including Gov. Chris Sununu, who has since endorsed him.

At least one GOP operative echoed that sentiment, telling The Hill that New Hampshire "was a state that was written off by the GOP apparatus. Bolduc is keeping his head down and working hard... The way he’s running his campaign in sync with how voters on both sides of the aisles expect candidates to conduct their campaigns — retail politics and town halls."

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