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Monday, June 9, 2014

Candidate must be state resident

By Kevin Landrigan

Nice try, but no …

Just when longtime Secretary of State Bill Gardner thought he had seen everything, here comes Democrat William Bryk, of Brooklyn, N.Y. ...

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Nice try, but no …

Just when longtime Secretary of State Bill Gardner thought he had seen everything, here comes Democrat William Bryk, of Brooklyn, N.Y.

Bryk tried to sign up in writing as a candidate for U.S. Senate to oppose the renomination of incumbent Sen. Jeanne Shaheen.

Federal law and the Constitution require that senators be a resident of the state they will represent when becoming candidates. But Bryk said that isn’t the case.

“I will be an inhabitant on Election Day, which means I will be eligible to serve when I am elected,” Bryk wrote.

Not so, Gardner says.

“The law is very clear here, and I’ve got to say he’s the first one to claim otherwise,” Gardner said with a chuckle.

The candidate filing period will end at 5 p.m. Friday.

The O’Brien factor

As we expected, state Democratic leaders are rejoicing at word that Mont Vernon Republican Rep. Bill O’Brien is making a comeback bid for speaker of the House this fall.

Buckley believes that in this state election, in which a lower turnout is expected, the prospect of the archconservative O’Brien taking the gavel back could help convince enough voters to reject GOP candidates up and down the ballot this November.

The showing of supporters for O’Brien at a reception after the House session on Wednesday, however, reveals he’ll be a serious contender if the GOP is in the majority.

Consider Manchester Republican Rep. Steve Vaillancourt, an O’Brien nemesis during 2011-12, who now says he would consider voting for O’Brien this fall.

Vaillancourt said it’s clear to him that O’Brien would restore fiscal conservative policies and might be a less autocratic leader if he takes over.

“The question is, Will he undergo a makeover?” Vaillancourt said. “House Speaker Norelli did when she came back to power after the 2012 election. He could, too.”

There are some conservative Republicans who were going to retire or not going to run who have changed their minds now that O’Brien is back in the hunt.

“Even a few weeks ago, I wasn’t thinking I could ever vote for him, but now, I’m clearly considering it,” Vaillancourt said.

Supporting Pearl

State Senate candidate Howard Pearl, of Loudon, picked up a prominent backer at week’s end in former Sen. Jack Barnes.

Pearl hopes to avenge his primary defeat in 2012 to Deerfield Republican John Reagan. The Raymond Republican held the seat for nearly 15 years, and as a town selectman, remains popular in the district.

What’s interesting about Barnes is that Pearl lost the race by only 30 votes and he lost in Raymond to Reagan by 135 votes.

But now, Reagan is the incumbent, and unlike other Senate Republicans, he hasn’t hurt himself with the conservative wing of the party by voting for issues such as Medicaid expansion or raising the gasoline tax.

You still have to give the edge to Reagan going into this one.

Kevin Landrigan can reached at
321-7040 or klandrigan@nashua
telegraph.com. Also, follow Landrigan on Twitter (@Klandrigan).