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Upcoming Corky Confab is “Disastrous for the New Hampshire GOP”

New Hampshire’s “Pirates of the Caribbean” GOP Senate Primary stinks of “backroom deals and anti-democracy”

Out-of-state millionaire Corky Messner’s backroom confab today to try to anoint the Republican nominee for Senate is already receiving intense backlash. At least two of the half a dozen candidates considering running won’t be there and the only confirmed candidate in the race wasn’t even invited. The Corky Confab has been called “disastrous for the New Hampshire GOP” because “it just stinks of like, backroom deals and anti-democracy.” It was also likened to “Pirates of the Caribbean” by NH Today’s Chris Ryan because “each pirate always votes for himself, so there's never been a pirate leader.” The meeting was also called “awkward” and full of “egos” by Dante Scala, a professor of political science at the University of New Hampshire and NH Today’s Justin McIsaac. All this comes following WMUR Political Director Adam Sexton’s report Friday that Republicans are likely to have a highly competitive primary with the potential for “a lot of bloodletting” and that the GOP field is filled with “a lot of folks who don't have name recognition.” Yesterday Governor Chris Sununu himself predicted in an interview with Bloomberg that Republicans wouldn’t be able to anoint a candidate and instead would have a “robust primary” that would leave the GOP without a standard bearer until September 2022. Read and watch more about the NH GOP’s “bloodletting” primary below: WGIR: Paul Steinhauser and Chris Ryan Discuss Corky Messner’s “Disastrous” and “Anti-Democratic” GOP Meeting to Anoint a Senate Candidate

  • Fox News’s Paul Steinhauser: “This is just disastrous for the New Hampshire GOP. It just stinks of like, backroom deals and anti-democracy. And it just-- it doesn't--the optics are bad, I think, for the Republicans here in New Hampshire. [...] the optics just look bad. It's not like the public is going to be in this meeting. It's not like it's going to be live streamed so people can see what's going on” [...] Yeah, it's going to be a closed door meeting it just--the Democrats already had a field day with this, and it's only going to continue.”

  • NH Today’s Chris Ryan: “But again, how is this going to work out? Like if you're Kevin Smith, and you're sitting across from Frank Guinta and Frank says, 'I want to run' and you're going to be like 'I guess I'm not running because we got to get behind Frank,' or is it going to be like, as I said before, the scene in the Pirates of the Caribbean, the second one, that Keith Richards is in, where all the pirates are sitting around the table and they've never been able to get parlay because each pirate always votes for himself, so there's never been a pirate leader. So is Corky going to be basically the guy who says, 'Hey, everybody voted for themselves. I'm picking this person' like, I don't know how it's all going to work.”

  • NH Today’s Justin McIsaac asked UNH’s Dante Scala: “How do you see something like this playing out, do you think it’s possible that the white smoke will emerge and there to be one candidate, or is the room not big enough for all the egos that will come together and feel they’re the best candidate?”

  • UNH’s Dante Scala: “[...] I would really like to be a fly on the wall and listen to how this conversation goes and measure the degree of awkwardness in the room as all these wannabe candidates basically stall.”

  • McIsaac: “[...] it does strike me as some sort of thing 50, or 60 years ago would happen in a smoke-filled room, with no one really knowing about, right down to the fact that there are no women involved in this process.”

  • Chris Sununu: “I think you’re going to have a very robust Republican year.”

WMUR Political Director Adam Sexton:The potential is there for, you know, a lot of bloodletting to happen if it's a competitive primary from now until September. But what do you think is going on right now? We thought maybe we would see somebody jump in quickly. Time is of the essence here. I mean, I know it's a favorable Republican year, but these are a lot of folks who don't have name recognition. Where are the candidates?”


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