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Bradley easily wins GOP primary; Boutin defeats Kuch

  • Sen. Jeb Bradley speaks with the Monitor editorial board on Monday, June 22, 2015. ELIZABETH FRANTZ

  • David Boutin



Monitor staff
Wednesday, September 12, 2018

David Boutin cleared his first hurdle on the way to a rematch with  Manchester Democrat Kevin Cavanaugh.

Boutin commanded a 24 percent lead over Bow Republican Rep. Bill Kuch and was declared the winner of Tuesday’s primary election.

Boutin will face Cavanaugh in November for the 16th District, which includes Bow, Dunbarton, Hooksett, Candia and Wards 1, 2 and 12 in Manchester.

Boutin held 62 percent of the votes with all seven precincts reporting Tuesday night. He held 3,044 votes to Kuch’s 1,893. It was the only district in the capital area to have a contested primary race.

Farther north, Senate Majority leader Jeb Bradley easily defeated his primary challenger, Steven Steiner, in District 3. Bradley held 76 percent of the votes with 50 percent of precincts reporting at press time Tuesday night.

Boutin represented District 16 in the Senate from 2010 to 2016 when he stepped away for family reasons. After years of Republican control, the district turned blue as Democrat Scott McGilvray won the seat in 2016, but McGilvray died just a few months later. Boutin entered the special election to replace McGilvray but he lost to Cavanaugh, a Manchester Alderman, in July 2017.

Boutin jumped back in again for this election cycle in an effort regain the seat for Republicans, but he was met with a primary challenge in Kuch, a two-term House representative from Bow.

Kuch campaigned as the conservative option for Republicans. He voted against expanded Medicaid as a House member, while Boutin supported it. Kuch received an “A” rating from the New Hampshire Firearms Coalition, while Boutin was given a “C.”

In an interview with the Monitor, Kuch said he would mostly stick with the Republican platform if elected to the Senate. Boutin’s record in office shows he has mostly done that, as well.

One area where they strongly differed was over a bill that earmarked $102 million for various spending – called the “Christmas tree” bill – after ending the year with a surplus. The House passed the bill in May, but Kuch voted against it, favoring returning the money to taxpayers. Boutin said there were elements of the bill that he supports.

In the North Country, results of a write-in campaign against former Senate Minority Leader Jeff Woodburn were unknown at press time.

(Nick Stoico can be reached at 369-3321, nstoico@cmonitor.com or on Twitter @NickStoico.)