Ayotte Pulls Support From Trump; Hassan Calls It A Political Calculation

Oct 8, 2016

Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Senator Kelly Ayotte has withdrawn her support for Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump. The move comes after the Washington Post reported on an 11-year old video showed Trump talking crudely about groping women.

Friday night, Ayotte called Trump's remarks in the video "totally inappropriate and offensive."

By late Saturday morning, Ayotte said in a statement that she’s “a mom and an American first and cannot support a candidate for President who brags about degrading and assaulting women.”

Ayotte now plans to write in the Republican ticket’s vice residential candidate, Indiana Governor Mike Pence, for President when she votes.

Campaigning in Manchester, Governor Maggie Hassan, who is challenging Ayotte, derided Ayotte’s withdrawal of support for Trump as "too little too late."

“She has failed an absolute test of courage of character and of judgment and the people of New Hampshire deserve somebody who will always put New Hampshire and her country first,  and this is just another example of how Kelly Ayotte always put her party first and then makes political calculation after political calculation about where to go next.”

In a statement, New Hampshire GOP chairman Jennfier Horn said that she “understands and respects Senator Ayotte’s decision to write in Mike Pence, and that “there will be no repercussions from the party directed at those who choose not to support Donald Trump.”

Horn added that she had expressed her own concerns about Donald Trump’s qualifications but respects that he was nominated by the people.