It’s been several months since my campaign ended and while it has left me decidedly agnostic on some issues (i.e., what to call myself, politically), or has changed my mind on others (i.e., talking with liberals in Keene has helped me re-discover many of my liberal tendencies), it has only strengthened all of my prior faiths that made me fall in love with New Hampshire over two years ago.
And as I sit here in sunny California, visiting my sorely missed friends and family for Christmas, I am left with an even greater longing to step foot again in snowy, downtown Keene, dressed in suit and tie and equipped with as many door hangers as my impoverished budget could afford…
Innocent oversight or calculated tactic? The Sentinel refused to publish a letter from liberty-oriented candidate Andrew Carroll prior to the primary election. From Andrew’s website:
This was an unpublished letter to the editor I sent to the Sentinel shortly before the 2010 Democratic primary. It is unfortunate that they did not publish it, as the letter cleared my name of the wrongly attributed Free Keene stigma – a stigma which, though false, cost me many votes in the election. I provide it here, now, in hopes that those who visit my site may still find value in it. Thank you.
Let’s Talk About the Issues
My name is Andrew Carroll and I am running for State Representative right here in Keene. There are many important issues facing voters this September 14, and I have done my best to address some of them here and on my campaign website: Carroll4NH.com
But first, let me clear up some confusion:
I am not a Free Keene member. I do not condone the controversial tactics of some Free Keene members. I find some of the behavior to be disruptive and I do not believe it is an appropriate way to proceed. I believe that we can do good things, and work to make positive contributions to this community, by working together within the democratic process. (more…)
The detractors in the liberty movement said the civil disobedience in Keene “poisoned the well”. They point to the angry anonymous posts on the Sentinel articles and upset local politicos as evidence of their claim. No doubt, there are haters in Keene. Of course there are – Keene activism is dangerous to the status quo, gets attention and so local awareness means no one is “slipping under the radar” as some other activists are around the state. As a result of the haters, rumors fly around town about Free Keene and the liberty activists here. It sounds like a dire situation, doesn’t it?
Could things be done better? Sure. But since no one is in charge, the only way to accomplish that is persuasion. Otherwise, outreach is an important part of correcting misconceptions about activists in Keene. Andrew Carroll’s campaign for state house is one method of outreach. His responses on door-to-door visits were overwhelmingly positive and his voter turnout set a record for highest percentage of votes for a liberty activist in Keene!
That’s right, despite the multiple hit pieces published in the paper, the emails that went around to democrats, and the calls to local talk radio all with the intention to paint Andrew as an impostor and not a “real” democrat, Andrew Carroll received a higher percentage of the vote than did previous campaigns by liberty activists. Andrew received votes, at minimum, from 28% of all democratic voters. Julia Miranda got about 21% in 2007 and NH native Nick Ryder garnered about 24% in 2009, if I recall correctly. That 28% number comes from receiving 464 votes out of 1649 democrats voting! Please note, that in 2007 the anti-free-stater fervor had barely begun, so after years of civil disobedience, noncooperation, and outside-the-system activism, the results from inside the system are better than ever!
Congratulations, Andrew! Some say that political success isn’t possible in Keene for liberty activists here, and you may just prove them wrong the next time around. Very few candidates win their first time out.