EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

New Hampshire

November 9, 2012

N.H. political parties must build for future

Elections over, N.H. political parties must plan for future

(Continued)

But Democrats also have to deliver in office, Gannon-Weston said.

"We have to help people in our communities thrive," she said.

Democrat Jim Splaine, a former 30-year legislator, wants Democrats to reach out to Republicans.

"I have a suggestion for my fellow Democrats that might help solidify their support for the next election and beyond, and also help us solve problems," Splaine said. "It's daring, but why don't we all try to reach out in this divided state and country to find our commonality?"

Society is facing serious problems and can't afford to keep having winners with a lot of losers, Splaine said.

"We all have to win," he said.

St. Anselm College assistant professor Chris Galdieri sees Gov.-elect Maggie Hassan as a key player for the Democrats moving forward.

"Throughout the campaign, Gov.-elect Hassan aggressively presented herself as a problem solver first and foremost, very much in the style of outgoing Gov. (John) Lynch," he said. "I think that maintaining that course is the best way for Hassan and the Democrats in the Legislature to proceed."

Republicans are in a different place than Democrats after the election, pondering the reversals.

"The worst thing Republicans can do is overreact," said Kevin Smith, runnerup to Ovide Lamontagne in the GOP gubernatorial primary. "There are great opportunities for Republicans to rebound and come back. Two years from now, the Republicans are going to have to offer a very positive vision for the state."

Smith sees potential for GOP gains if the economy continues to struggle.

"The Democrats are going to own the economy," he said.

So, it's imperative for Republicans to convince voters they are better at dealing with economic issues, to successfully make the case, he said, "why they are the best ones."

Now, Republicans have to thoughtfully look at what happened.

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