Photo Gallery: 19 Presidential Candidates In New Hampshire

19 Republican presidential candidates attended a “Leadership Summit” hosted by the New Hampshire Republican Party on April 17th and 18th.  We’ve produced a great photo gallery from that parade of candidates.

Rand Paul

Click here for our photo gallery.


Trump On Trump

“I’m gonna make the country rich again, and then I’m gonna make the country great again, if I run.”

Donald Trump’s closing line at a post-speech press Q&A summed up his appearance at the New Hampshire Republican Party’s Leadership Summit yesterday.  One of 19 putative candidates appearing at the conference, Trump’s pitch was based on pledging to replicate his “phenomenal” personal financial success for the country as a whole and visceral anger at a diminished United States.  He mostly avoided policy discussions, but did say that he would not cut social security, medicaid or medicare as he “would bring so much money into this country” that such cuts would be unnecessary.  Similarly, Trump said that he was open to considering an increase in the federal minimum wage but that such an increase would be “unimportant” as a Trump presidency would produce dramatic financial improvements for all.

Most of the 19 “candidates” appearing at the conference are not legally declared as candidates, but are in various stages of “considering” and “contemplating” running.  “I’d say June, July” replied Trump, who’s flirted with running for office numerous times and is not legally declared as a candidate, when I asked for his timeframe on a decision of whether to run.

Ted Cruz Q&A

Senator Ted Cruz wrapped up his appearance at the New Hampshire Republican “Leadership Summit” by discussing his opposition to Loretta Lynch’s nomination as U.S. Attorney General and to holding a vote on her nomination, his views on federal marijuana policy and whether he thinks “it’s time for a woman president.”

Cruz opposes Lynch’s nomination and also opposes holding a vote on her nomination.  It’s been an effective strategy, leaving a lame-duck Eric Holder in place as AG and markedly shortening the time Lynch will have in office if and when she’s confirmed.  With five months having passed since President Obama announced her selection, her possible time in office has shrunk significantly as the January 2017 end of the Obama administration looms ever larger.  Refusing to hold a Senate vote on presidential nominees is a strategy that Cruz may come to hold a different view of, however, should he become president.

Cruz also discussed why he opposes a Justice Department policy of not prosecuting low level marijuana offenses but accepts individual states legalizing the use of marijuana.  Finally, he responded to a question of whether “it’s time for a woman president.”  Echoing arguments made by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, he attacked Obama and Hillary Clinton over rising income inequality.

Cruz, a declared candidate for president, spoke with the press following his speech Saturday at a New Hampshire Republican party presidential candidate conference in Nashua.

Pataki At NH Presidential Candidate Summit

Former New York Governor opened a 19 candidate parade through Nashua, New Hampshire’s Crowne Plaza Hotel this morning, kicking off one of the, if not the, largest gathering of presidential candidates in recent history.  Many of them, Pataki included, are not legally declared candidates, wink wink, but are nonetheless acting as though they are running.

Each candidate is given 30 minutes to speak, determining for themselves how much time to devote to Q&A.  Pataki went further, pushing the lectern aside and placing two stools on stage as he was joined by a New Hampshire radio host who asked questions.  The conversational style worked well for Pataki, allowing him to drop a number of well-received quips and one-liners.

Post-Speech Q&A:

Pataki spoke with the press following his speech.

Pataki On Cuomo’s Cuba Trip

Former New York Governor George Pataki politely disagreed with current New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s upcoming trade mission to Cuba, scheduled for Monday.  Pataki was harshly critical of President Obama’s decision to move toward normalizing relations with Cuba, recounting his own experience visiting Cuba.  Pataki tried to avoid directly criticizing Cuomo however, citing Mario Cuomo’s similar stance toward Pataki, but expressly said that he would not have made such a trip if he were in office now.

We spoke at a Pataki campaign appearance in Manchester, New Hampshire.

Donovan On Smoking Marijuana

During an 11th Congressional District candidate debate Tuesday evening, both Republican Dan Donovan and Democrat Vincent Gentile acknowledged smoking marijuana.  The question was posed during a “lightning round” by moderator Errol Louis in which the candidates were asked for yes/no answers (and occurs at about 35:45).  As the Staten Island District Attorney Donovan oversees prosecution of marijuana and other drug charges.

After the debate I asked Donovan when and how frequently he had smoked marijuana:

CD 11 – The Post-Debate Gaggles

NY1 and the Staten Island Advance hosted an 11th Congressional District candidate debate Tuesday evening between Republican Dan Donovan and Democrat Vincent Gentile.  Held at the College of Staten Island, the debate topics ranged from whether the candidates have ever smoked marijuana to how to deal with Israel, Iran and the deep issues raised by President Obama’s recent executive orders on immigration.

Both candidates spoke with the press following the debate.

Donovan:

Gentile:

Donovan & The Minimum Wage

During a candidate debate hosted by NY1 and the Staten Island Advance Republican Dan Donovan appeared to not know the federal minimum wage.  His Democratic opponent, Vincent Gentile, asked him that question during a “cross examination” portion of the debate (at about 31:00).  When asked about it during a post-debate Q&A with reporters, Donovan denied hearing the question as posed.

Gentile:  Here’s what Gentile had to say about his minimum wage question and Donovan’s response when speaking with reporters after the debate.

11th Congressional District Debate – The Full Story



The race to succeed Michael Grimm moved ahead Tuesday evening as three candidates met for a sharp, sometimes raucous debate. Democratic Party candidate Vincent Gentile, Green Party candidate James Lane and Republican/Conservative/Independence parties candidate Dan Donovan faced off in Bay Ridge in front of a crowd of more than 100 people.

11th CD Debate

The evening began with opening statements and then moved entirely to questions asked by the audience. Many were solid, meaningful questions even if they often made clear the questioner’s view on the answer.

Here are a few observations on the candidates and the race, with video of the complete debate at the bottom of this post.

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Donovan On Lynch Nomination

Offering a position contrary to most of his party, Republican congressional candidate Dan Donovan expressed support for President Obama’s nomination of Loretta Lynch for Attorney General of the United States.  A vote on Lynch’s nomination has been blocked by Senate Republicans.  Although only the Senate votes on such nominations, Donovan has a worthwhile perspective.  He’s the Staten Island District Attorney and his jurisdiction of Richmond County falls within Lynch’s jurisdiction as U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York.

I asked Donovan about the the Lynch nomination following an 11th Congressional District candidate debate in Bay Ridge.  Here’s what he had to say.

Donovan & Gentile Gaggles

Republican Dan Donovan and Democrat Vincent Gentile separately spoke with the press following the 11th Congressional District candidate debate Tuesday night.

Donovan:

Many of the questions for Donovan, the Staten Island District Attorney, focused on domestic violence conviction statistics for his office.  During the debate Gentile was critical of what he described as poor results by Donovan’s office.  Donovan dismissed that criticism as misguided and proceeded to discuss some of the many challenges inherent in prosecuting domestic violence cases.  I asked Donovan about Senate Republican delays on acting on the nomination of Loretta Lynch to be Attorney General.  As the current U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District Lynch’s area of jurisdiction includes Staten Island.  Donovan express unambiguous support for Lynch’s nomination.  A final question addressed Sandy recovery issues.

Gentile:

Question topics for Gentile included his criticisms of Donovan on domestic violence prosecutions and, in several iterations, how he would produce any meaningful results in a Republican-dominated House.

Debate Nadir (Updated)

The race to succeed Michael Grimm moved into a higher gear Tuesday evening as three candidates met for a sharp, sometimes raucous debate.  Democratic Party candidate Vincent Gentile, Green Party candidate James Lane and Republican/Conservative/Independence parties candidate Dan Donovan faced off in Bay Ridge in front of a crowd of more than 100 people.

After opening statements the evening consisted entirely of questions asked by the audience.  Many were solid, meaningful questions even if they often made clear the questioner’s view on the answer.  Among the exceptions was this question, which generated the most raucous few minutes of an energetic gathering:

Update:

Here’s an additional clip from shortly after the episode shown in the clip above.  The woman featured in the clip above moved to the back of the room, shouting and heckling the next questioner and the candidates.  As this clip begins Green Party candidate James Lane is responding to the question in the prior clip.

de Blasio Press Q&A: The NYCHA Funding Edition

Mayor Bill de Blasio and Senator Chuck Schumer announced $3 billion in federal funding for Sandy-related repairs and resiliency improvements for the New York City Housing Authority.  Speaking at an afternoon press conference in Red Hook, de Blasio and Schumer celebrated the massive block of federal funding intended for 33 separate NYCHA developments.

de Blasio and Schumer were joined by Reps. Gregory Meeks, Nydia Velazquez and Hakeem Jeffries, Council Member Carlos Menchaca, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams and NYCHA CEO Shola Olatoye.

On Topic Q&A:

Here is the full on topic Q&A.

Off Topic Q&A:

Here is the full off topic Q&A.