Jul 10, 2015 12:02 AM
Steinhauser: Paul Hodes jazzed about new radio gig; less excited about possible 2016 run
NH1 Political Director - NH1.com
CONCORD – Paul Hodes seems quite excited about his new career behind the microphone. When it comes to a possible 2016 rematch against Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte, the former Democratic congressman is a lot less enthusiastic.
Hodes spoke one-on-one with NH1 News on the eve of the Friday debut of his new radio program on WKXL in Concord.
“I went on Chris Ryan’s show on WKXL and a few weeks later he called me up and said ‘hey let’s do a radio show. I want you to be the host.’ I said OK.’ That’s about how it happened,” Hodes said when asked how his new gig came about.
Asked about his new program, the former congressman, attorney, and musician said “we’re going to cover politics, law, business, but also arts and culture and entertainment. Things that are going on in Concord and all around the state.”
Hodes, in his second term representing New Hampshire’s 2nd Congressional District, was the Democrat’s 2010 Senate nominee. But he lost to Ayotte by more than 20 percentage points during a GOP wave election.
Asked if he’s considering running, Hodes said “a lot of people have been talking to me but I’m really focused on other things right now,” adding “I don’t have any timetable and I’m not actively thinking about it.”
Hodes said he hasn’t had any recent conversations with Democratic party officials regarding a Senate run.
Even though he downplayed any talk of a 2016 bid, Hodes was critical of the woman who beat him in 2010.
“Kelly Ayotte has done a good job as a politician but I don’t believe she is the kind of United States senator that the United States and New Hampshire needs right now,” Hodes said. “There are a lot of people in Washington that have their heads in the sand and Kelly Ayotte is one of those people. She’s not active, not championing, changes that would help the environment. She seems to favor big business. And I think we need a change.”
Asked about the increasing competitive race for the Democratic presidential nomination, Hodes said “I think it’s a really healthy thing to have a very competitive Democratic primary. I think that’s terrific for us in New Hampshire, it’s good for the country to hear everybody’s positions.”
But Hodes, who’s backing former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s White House bid, said “I think Hillary Clinton is going to make a tremendous president for the United States.”