Friday, February 20, 2009

Former McCain supporter indicted on fraud charges

A former New Hampshire supporter of U.S. Sen. John McCain has been indicted on misdemeanor charges relating to mileage reimbursements.

Richard Brothers, head of the Department of Employment Security, has been accused of filing reimbursement forms for trips that he did not make.

“For each month between August 2007 and May 2008, the informations charge that Richard Brothers knowingly made a written false statement, which he did not believe to be true, with a purpose to deceive a public servant in the performance of his or her official function, by submitting travel vouchers for reimbursement for mileage and tolls and attesting to trips he had not actually taken, thereby causing the State to reimburse him for mileage and toll expenses he had not actually incurred for the dates and/or locations stated on the travel vouchers,” reads the indictment from New Hampshire Attorney General Kelly Ayotte.

Brothers was an alternative delegate, for McCain, to the Republican National Convention in 2008 and served on McCain’s Belknap County leadership committee during the New Hampshire presidential primary.

Gov. John Lynch (D-NH) said that Brothers should immediately resign.

“These are very serious charges that result from a thorough investigation by the Attorney General's Office. I call on Richard Brothers to resign,” Lynch said in a press release. “I have also directed Richard Brothers not to enter any Employment Security facility, effective immediately.”

Shea-Porter viewed more favorable than Hodes, among NH Dems

A new University of New Hampshire poll shows that both of New Hampshire’s U.S. Senators enjoy high favorable ratings.

The poll also shows that U.S. Rep. Carol Shea-Porter (D-NH) has a higher favorable rating than U.S. Rep. Paul Hodes (D-Rochester). Hodes announced earlier this month that he would run for the United States Senate in 2010 and Shea-Porter is also considering running for the seat.

According to the poll, “Shea-Porter is well positioned in a primary battle with Hodes, as 61% of Democrats view Shea-Porter favorably compared to 50% for Hodes. However, Shea-Porter is viewed much more unfavorably by Republicans than Hodes is, with 50% of Republicans having an unfavorable opinion of Shea-Porter compared to 28% for Hodes.”

“Democrats have a difficult choice between Carol Shea-Porter and Paul Hodes,” said Andrew Smith, Director of the UNH Survey Center, in a press release. “Hodes looks to be better positioned for a general election, but Shea-Porter appeals more strongly to their party’s liberal base.”

The poll has U.S. Sens. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Judd Gregg (R-NH) with high favorability ratings.

Granite Staters gave Gregg a favorability rating of 64 percent, while 15 percent have an unfavorable rating of the senior United States Senator. The poll was taken before Gregg withdrew his name from consideration for the Secretary of Commerce post.

Shaheen is viewed favorably by 56 percent of poll respondents and 32 percent had unfavorable view of Shaheen.