Apr 5, 2017 11:27 AM

1st District battle begins as former NH Seacoast police chief launches congressional bid


CONCORD – Eddie Edwards is first in.

The former South Hampton police chief and past chief of the state liquor commission’s enforcement and licensing division announced Wednesday that he is running for the 2018 GOP nomination in New Hampshire’s 1st Congressional District.

In a statement, the 49 year old Republican from Dover said “New Hampshire deserves a leader in Congress who will fight for us. We need a strong conservative who will stand on principle and represent the people, not the Washington special interests.”

Edwards, who is a Navy veteran and an FBI Academy graduate, in recent years has run his own consulting firm and also served as director of community relations in former U.S. Rep. Frank Guinta’s congressional office.

Edwards is the first Republican to jump into the race, but it’s highly unlikely he’ll be the last. State Sen. Andy Sanborn of Bedford recently told NH1 News he’s being encouraged to run. Sanborn's made a couple of trips to Washington DC to meet with officials with the National Republican Congressional Committee. Also seriously considering bids are former state Health and Human Services Commissioner John Stephen of Manchester and state Rep. John Burt of Goffstown.

The seat is currently held by four-term Democratic Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter. At this early date, she’s yet to say if she’ll run for re-election next year.

The 1st CD is one of the most high profile and closely watched congressional districts in the country. Shea-Porter first won election in 2006 and was re-elected in 2010. She lost Guinta in 2010 but beat him in the 2012 rematch. He returned the favor in 2014, but she won last year's four-peat.

Prominent Seacoast GOP activist Renee Plummer told NH1 News last month that she would back Edwards if he launched a campaign. So is attorney John Lyons. The Republican consulting firm RightVoterLLC is assisting Edward’s campaign.

“Over the course of the campaign, I will be traveling throughout the district, listening to voters, and offering my vision for positive solutions to bring new jobs to New Hampshire, cut taxes and reduce the size of government, strengthen national security and provide for our veterans, reduce the burden of student loan debt, and fight the opioid epidemic,” Edwards added in his statement.

This is Edward’s second run for public office. He lost to Democratic state Sen. David Watters in the 2014 election in District 4.

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