Effort to drop Clinton’s name from N.H. Democratic dinner fails

  • FILE - In this Nov. 6, 2017, file photo, former President Bill Clinton speaks at a symposium in Georgetown University in Washington. Democrats have been quick to support the “me too” chorus of women _ and some men _ who have stepped up to allege sexual misconduct and name names. But now “me too” stains the Democrats, too, putting them in an awkward place as they calibrate how forcefully to respond.(AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta) Manuel Balce Ceneta

For the Monitor
Published: 12/2/2017 5:49:54 PM

President Bill Clinton’s name will remain on the New Hampshire Democratic Party’s annual dinner after a handful of activists failed to make any headway on the issue at a party meeting Saturday.

But a top party official told the Monitor she’s confident the name of the event will be changed.

“Can we change the name?” a handful of vocal activists shouted, expressing their displeasure with the current name of the state party’s major fall fundraising dinner.

The Kennedy-Clinton dinner is named after former presidents John F. Kennedy and Bill Clinton.

Controversy over powerful men sexually harassing women has dominated national headlines in recent weeks, from the firing of major media figures like Matt Lauer and Charlie Rose to calls for Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore of Alabama, Democratic Sen. Al Franken of Minnesota, and longtime Democratic Congressman John Conyers of Michigan, to step down.

The intense scrutiny in the media has also revived longstanding sexual misconduct allegations against former President Clinton.

Last month, hours before the Kennedy-Clinton dinner was held, New Hampshire GOP chair Jeanie Forrester urged state Democrats to drop Clinton’s name from their dinner.

At the dinner, and again at the state party meeting Saturday, most New Hampshire Democrats had no appetite to make the change.

Other than the brief outburst, there was no mention of removing Clinton’s name at the state party’s winter meeting, which was dominated by a discussion about superdelegates and a forum for candidates battling for the open seat in the state’s First Congressional District.

After the meeting, state party vice-chair Mo Baxley told the Monitor that “I do think we will” change the name of the dinner.

Kathy Sullivan, one of New Hampshire’s two committee members on the Democratic National Committee, agreed.

“I think it’s a discussion the party should have about the name of the dinner,” she said.

Sullivan predicted that the state party would have more to say in the coming months about dropping Clinton’s name from the dinner.

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