Jul 18, 2016 10:46 AM

First on NH1 News: NHDP hopes to bring GOP convention and Trump to Ayotte in NH

NH1 News Political Director

CONCORD – Sen. Kelly Ayotte isn’t attending the Republican National Convention this week in Cleveland, but that’s not stopping the New Hampshire Democratic Party from trying to tie New Hampshire’s GOP U.S. senator with her party’s presumptive presidential nominee Donald Trump.

The NHDP tells NH1 News starting Monday they’ll launch a week-long campaign to bring Cleveland and Trump to Ayotte.

The state party says each day they’ll send out an email release highlighting the agenda Ayotte shares with Trump which they say includes undermining health care for women, obstructing the Supreme Court confirmation process.”

“Kelly Ayotte can run, but she can’t hide from her record of putting her political party and her corporate special interest backers ahead of the people she is supposed to be representing,” NHDP Chair Ray Buckley said in a statement. “New Hampshire Democrats intend to hold Kelly Ayotte and Donald Trump accountable for their records and reckless policies that would hurt hardworking families across the Granite State.”

The state party says they’re also planning one or two demonstrations during the week.

Even though she’s said she’ll vote for the GOP nominee, Ayotte’s kept her distance from Trump. She faces difficult re-election challenge from Democratic Gov. Maggie Hassan, as well as a long shot primary challenge from state Sen. Jim Rubens.

Ayotte told NH1 News this spring that she would be saying in New Hampshire to reach out to voters rather than attend the Republican convention in Cleveland.

Hassan is attending next week’s Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia as part of New Hampshire’s delegation. But unlike the Democrats, the Republicans don’t have a super delegate system and Ayotte is not a delegate to the GOP convention.

The NHDP says they’ll focus Monday on for-profit universities. State and national Democrats and the Hassan campaign have attacked Ayotte the past two weeks over contributions she received (and later returned) from Bridgepoint Education, which is under investigation by several federal and state agencies for allegedly luring veterans to enroll in classes in order to gain access to federal student aid through the GI Bill. Democrats are comparing Ayotte’s ties to Bridgepoint to Trump University, the now-presumptive nominee’s for-profit education company, which faces a fraud trial starting in November.

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