FLASHBACK: Ayotte Used Official Resources For Political Strategizing

As Kelly Ayotte catches heat back home for allegedly interfering in the state’s budget process in order to foil her potential political opponent, it’s worth recalling a similar incident from 2010. Back then, it was revealed that, as Attorney General, Ayotte used her official email account to discuss and strategize on partisan politics with a political advisor.

“As questions abound as to just how much Kelly Ayotte meddled in the state budget for her own personal political gain, it’s worth remembering that this is a pattern for her,” said Sadie Weiner, DSCC National Press Secretary. “There’s clearly no line Kelly Ayotte won’t cross when it comes to looking out for her own political future, and that fact that she would push for obstructionist tactics over commonsense solutions show that her priorities just don’t lie with New Hampshire families.”


Union Leader: “Ayotte Pondered Her Political Future Using Her State Department Of Justice E-Mail Account” With Individual Who Became A Consultant To Her Senate Campaign. “U.S. Senate candidate Kelly Ayotte pondered her political future using her state Department of Justice e-mail account, according to a review of thousands of e-mails sent and received by the former state attorney general. ‘Bottom line though when will an opportunity like this come along again?’ Ayotte, who is seeking the Republican nomination in Tuesday’s primary, wrote about her Senate candidacy in an April 25, 2009, e-mail to Rob Varsalone, who is now a campaign consultant. ‘Do you see it? And without risk, there is no gain.’ ‘It will never happen again,’ he responded. Once in a lifetime (opportunity).’ ‘Agreed,’ she wrote.” [Union Leader, 9/11/10]

  • Union Leader: In E-Mails, Ayotte “Considered Her Viability For A Run For Governor In 2012” Instead Of Running For Open Senate Seat In 2010. “In the e-mails with Varsalone, Ayotte also considered her viability for a run for governor in 2012 and seemed to decide that she’d have an easier road in the Senate campaign, which ultimately didn’t happen because several other Republican candidates entered the race. ‘Plus in my estimation, govs race in (2012) is a crowded primary for me,’ she wrote that day, referring to a gubernatorial campaign. ‘Yep, but if you run for senate and lose (but it is close) you will be the top contender for (governor) in (2012),’ Varsalone responded. ‘Fair point. I think if I get (out) early enough, I can foreclose a primary. Your thoughts? Who do you think I should be worried about?’ she wrote.” [Union Leader, 9/11/10]
  • In AG E-Mails, Ayotte Questioned Advisor Whether She Should Run For Senate, Which Her Advisor Said She Should Do. “Throughout the exchange, Varsalone provided her advice and, ultimately, the answer as to whether she should run. ‘You have two cons: money and you have never run for anything before. Getting in early helps on both counts,’ he wrote. ‘Face it, it will never be perfect. But the seat is open now. I know you. When you set your mind to something, there is no stopping you.’ ‘Do you think I should do it?’ she asked at another point. ‘Yes,’ he responded.” [Union Leader, 9/11/10]
  • Headline: “Ayotte E-Mails From Work: Should I Run?” [Union Leader, 9/11/10]

Nov. 2006: Ayotte Used AG E-Mail To Set Up A Meeting To Discuss Run For Congress. “In November 2006, then-Attorney General Ayotte used her office e-mail account to ask Rob Varsalone for a meeting to ‘sit down with a state map’ and discuss ‘info on population profiles, approx # of registered voters in areas (r, d, I). I have some ideas and need to talk with you using some data.’” [Union Leader, 10/13/10]

  • Headline: “E-Mails Show Ayotte Discussing Potential Run” [Union Leader, 10/13/10]

Three Months Before Resigning As AG, An Individual Who Became A Consultant On Her 2010 Campaign Forwarded An NRSC E-Mail Sent To Him By An NRSC Employee Who Later Worked On Her Campaign.  “The Attorney General’s Office yesterday released another batch of e-mails received or sent by Republican U.S. Senate candidate and former Attorney General Kelly Ayotte over the past several years. […] In a political reference, in April 2009, three months before she resigned, Ayotte received an e-mail from her current campaign consultant, Rob Varsalone, forwarding a National Republican Senatorial Committee blog that had been forwarded to him by Neva Foley, who was then an NRSC staffer and is now reportedly on Ayotte’s campaign staff. The NRSC blog cites a conservative New Hampshire blog report critical of Hodes.” [Union Leader, 7/10/10]

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