New Hampshire GOP chairwoman Jennifer Horn seemed to have abandoned efforts to remain neutral in the 2016 GOP presidential primaries on Wednesday, taking the extraordinary step of attacking not just any GOP presidential candidate but the 2016 frontrunner for her own party’s nomination.
“Shallow campaigns that depend on bombast and divisive rhetoric do not succeed in New Hampshire, and I don’t expect that they will now,” Horn told the Boston Globe about billionaire Donald Trump, whom the Globe noted holds a “commanding lead” in her state, in a phone interview on the day before Thanksgiving.
“In New Hampshire, historically, the truth is, people really don’t make their final decisions until very, very close until Election Day,” Horn added.
The Globe noted that Horn touted the candidacies of three establishment Republicans: Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.
“People are probably underestimating [New Jersey Governor] Chris Christie. And, certainly, [former Florida governor Jeb] Bush is working very, very hard in New Hampshire,” Horn was quoted as saying.
The Globe wrote that Horn also, in their interview, was “noting that U.S. Senator Marco Rubio has been climbing in state polls.”
Horn further attacked the voters who attend Trump’s rallies.
“Big rallies are a lot of fun, but in New Hampshire voters are looking to have that real conversation with a candidate,” Horn said.
Trump is much further ahead of everyone else in the field nationally—leading Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) by 26 points in the latest Reuters poll. In New Hampshire, according to the Real Clear Politics polling average, Trump has a 14.6 percent lead over the rest of the field.
That’s what makes Horn’s attack such a new low for the GOP establishment. The establishment in New Hampshire has long been trying to derail Trump’s presidential campaign there, with former NH GOP chair Fergus Cullen mounting a challenge—one that was almost instantly thrown out, unanimously, by the New Hampshire Ballot Law Commission—to Trump’s eligibility to be on the ballot in February 2016.
“The New Hampshire Ballot Law Commission on Tuesday quickly and unanimously threw out a challenge to Donald Trump’s eligibility to be on the state ballot,” Politico reported earlier this week. “The challenge was brought on by Fergus Cullen, the former New Hampshire GOP chairman, who said he was motivated by a longstanding worry that the real estate mogul could hand the election to Hillary Clinton. It only took a few minutes for the commission to throw out the challenge, according to The New Hampshire Union Leader.”
But, now, the GOP establishment in the state has pushed the state’s chairwoman to essentially abandon all appearance of impartiality, as she’s now taken off her gloves in favor of the establishment candidates Rubio, Bush, and Christie and against Trump’s candidacy. Horn and her spokesperson haven’t responded to Breitbart News requests for comment on whether she remains officially neutral in this race, and if this declaration of opposition to Trump’s candidacy means her claims of neutrality until now have been meaningless.