Don Bolduc: New Hampshire GOP Senate candidate renounces false 2020 election claims

Interviewed Thursday on Fox News About the 2020 race, Bolduc, a retired Army brigadier general who takes on Democratic Sen. Maggie Hassan in November, said he had “done a lot of research on it” and, after spoken with New Hampshire voters, changed position.

“I have come to the conclusion, and I want to be definitive on this point: the election was not stolen,” Bolduc said, adding that while he still believes there was fraud, “Elections have consequences and, sadly, President Biden is the rightful president of this country.”

The comments marked a turnaround from last month, when in a primary debate he doubled down on his past false claims.

“I signed a letter with 120 other generals and admirals saying Trump won the election, and damn it, I’m staying here. [it]“, said Bolduc during the debate in mid-August.

Hassan’s campaign described Bolduc’s new public stance as an unconvincing and cynical ploy.

“Don Bolduc has spent the entire campaign touting the Big Lie, and he can’t hide from that record. He even said he supports overturning the 2024 election results if it doesn’t work out in meaning,” Hassan’s campaign spokesman said. said Kevin Donohoe. “A word salad about Fox won’t erase its record of election denialism.”

Earlier Thursday, Hassan’s campaign shared on Twitter a video clip of Bolduc’s debate remark, tweeting, “Don Bolduc is an election denier.”

Bolduc’s campaign did not immediately respond to CNN’s request for an explanation for his reversal.

Hassan’s seat represents a best pickup opportunity for republicans, who are trying to erase the narrow majority of Democrats in the Senate this fall. New Hampshire broke for now-President Joe Biden by 7 points in 2020, and many GOP leaders believe Hassan is likely to be a capable challenger — an opinion that led them to back State Senate Chairman Chuck Morse in the primary . Morse conceded to Bolduc early Wednesday.
Morse had been endorsed by the state’s popular GOP Governor, Chris Sununu, that Senate Republicans had tried – and failed – to recruit against Hassan. Key GOP establishment figures also backed Morse, fearing that Bold

The UC’s rhetoric on the 2020 election, its calls for the repeal of direct election of senators as required by the 17th Amendment, and its criticism of the FBI after the search of Trump’s residence in Mar-a- Lago would condemn him to defeat in a general election. In the primary, Sununu called Bolduc a “conspiracy theorist-type candidate” and warned that Republicans “would have a much harder time” overturning the seat if he were nominated.

At a press conference on Wednesday, Hassan offered a preview of the upcoming campaign, calling Bolduc “the most extreme candidate for the U.S. Senate that New Hampshire has seen in decades” and emphasizing his ties with Trump.

“It’s interesting that Donald Trump indicated his support for Don Bolduc this morning, and again Don Bolduc supports denying the 2020 election – helped spread these lies, says he supports or is open to abolition of the FBI, and said if the 2024 elections don’t go the way he thinks they should, he would work to overthrow them,” Hassan said.

Trump did not make an endorsement in the New Hampshire GOP Senate primary. Trump congratulated Bolduc Wednesday on his “GREAT VICTORY in New Hampshire” in a post on the former president’s Truth Social platform. Bolduc’s campaign shared a screenshot of this message on Twitterwriting, “Strong words from President Trump. Thank you sir!”
Bolduc had shown signs in recent weeks that he was beginning to move away from the bogus 2020 election claims that had been central to his candidacy. In a New Hampshire Public Radio interview published on September 2, he repeatedly objected when asked about the claims.

Eventually, however, after the interviewer made it clear that there was “no evidence the 2020 election was stolen,” Bolduc tried to distance himself from that language.

“Did I say it was stolen? I didn’t say it was stolen. I said the Granite Staters were in trouble, and that’s what’s important. I just want to be clear about what I’m saying,” he said.

Bolduc, however, has long been an interpreter of Trump’s lies. In a interview with the New Yorker published in October 2021, he defended his decision to subscribe to the letter who declared Trump the winner of 2020 and insisted his allegations of rigged election and fraud were genuine.

“I believe in it a lot and I think it exists, and I think it’s been happening and it’s been happening for a long time in this country. When you try to steal the presidency, a lot of people are going to say, ‘OK, wait a minute. What’s going on here?” Bolduc said at the time.

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