Tag Archives: Walt Havenstein

Andrew Hemingway Victorious In Last Debate Before NH Primary

Manchester, NH- New Hampshire Republican gubernatorial candidates Andrew Hemingway and Walt Havenstein squared off Friday night in their last debate before the September 9th primary. Havenstein suffered from an incapability to articulate a distinct position on vital state issues, and thus was unable to define himself as the leading candidate. The fact that Havenstein cancelled three debates with Hemingway prior to Friday clearly did not help his campaign.

Despite Havenstein gaining support of establishment allies such as Mitt Romney, John McCain, Chris Christie, and NH State Senate candidate Jim Foley- who was recently outed for concealing his disbarment from law practice for embezzling- Andrew Hemingway triumphantly left the debate as the clear winner.

The contrast between Havenstein and Hemingway was difficult to miss as topics including marijuana decriminalization, New Hampshire’s economy and police militarization were discussed.

When asked about drugs and Governor Hassan’s response to the “spice” problem in the state, Hemingway said he is an advocate of marijuana decriminalization and criticized New Hampshire’s criminal penalty for small amounts of marijuana.

“Today in New Hampshire, we have such severe penalties on this that it pushes and creates a marketplace for these synthetic drugs,” said Hemingway.

Havenstein responded “I understand the nature of this problem, it is a very severe problem for our state. But I don’t think there are simple solutions. I don’t think there are simple solutions, if there were simple solutions, frankly we’d find those simple solutions. And it’s not merely a matter of decriminalizing marijuana.” Havenstein mentioned “looking at” decriminalization.

Havenstein and Hemingway discussed their plans to energize New Hampshire’s economy; Havenstein promised to create 25,000 new jobs by 2017 and reduce the business enterprise tax by 1.1%; Hemingway proposed a flat tax for businesses while eliminating the business profits tax and business enterprise tax and reducing the interest and dividends tax to reduce the burden. Havenstein called it a “tax on jobs when we’re trying to create jobs”, and Hemingway replied that his proposal would mean a reduction of the overall tax burden by nearly 42%.

The two candidates were asked about police militarization. The city of Keene discussed the future of their BearCat, an armored vehicle obtained by police through a federal grant application, and ultimately decided to keep it. Hemingway was asked if police militarization is becoming a problem, and he answered yes.

“To protect and to serve. That is ultimately the motto of police officers. And I believe perhaps that’s something that we have lost. This adoption of BearCats, these massive armored vehicles, the idea of them running through the streets of New Hampshire is frankly something that terrifies me and I think it terrifies a lot of individuals.”

Havenstein said that he does not think “massive arming up” of police is appropriate but that it’s up to the communities to decide of that type of equipment is appropriate.

WMUR-TV’s political analyst, James Pindell, graded the debate and gave Hemingway a B+, while Havenstein received a D, the lowest grade of all New Hampshire candidates analyzed following WMUR debates last week. WMUR coverage and analyses provides influence to New Hampshire elections.

“Havenstein gets the worst grade for any candidate all week for the simple reason that he had a terrible debate. He didn’t seem prepared for the most basic of questions. The feedback from Republican post-debate was all in unison: My goodness is he trying to lose?” wrote Pindell. The analyst did not have many words for Hemingway but wrote that “he came prepared and knowledgeable and energetic, even if it seemed over the top sometimes.”

Havenstein has been promoted by big-name GOP establishment candidates, many with unscrupulous records, throughout his campaign. Even with such support however, Havenstein has failed to resonate with voters. Hemingway has been labeled as an underdog in the past, but the campaign has been steadily gaining momentum. While he is not propped up by well-known names in the Republican party, Hemingway has become a favorite of independent-leaning conservatives and liberty-minded voters.

Hemingway’s victory at Friday’s debate has led to more grassroots support than ever before, with pro-liberty candidate PAC Stark360 organizing over 100 volunteers to distribute literature about Hemingway to voters this weekend in the final push before the primary.

Stark360 Volunteers
Volunteers preparing to distribute pro-Hemingway material. Photo credit: Stark360

Hemingway’s official campaign has its own team of about 100 volunteers making phone calls, knocking on doors, and other get-out-the-vote initiatives.

Stark360 has raised nearly $200,000 to help spread the word about Hemingway. Stark360’s volunteers in addition to official campaign volunteers could spell victory for Hemingway next Tuesday, as New Hampshire voters appear to crave a candidate with substance, solutions and integrity, not simply money and political influence.

Update #1, September 6th, 7:41 pm: Jim Foley has suspended his New Hampshire Senate campaign following news that Foley had poorly concealed his record of being disbarred from practicing law due to fraud.

NH GOP Gubernatorial Candidate Told To Return $9K In Improper Tax Credits

Concord, NH- Gubernatorial candidate Walter Havenstein (R-Alton) has been billed by the state of Maryland for “inappropriately accepted” tax credits that he shouldn’t have received.

Questions were raised about Havenstein’s residency following his candidacy announcement earlier this year. At the time of his declaration of candidacy, Havenstein claimed that he has lived in New Hampshire since 1999 when he and his wife moved to Bedford.

Havenstein later bought a home in Alton, NH, and then bought a condominium in Bethesda, Maryland while working there at BAE systems before becoming CEO of SAIC. In 2007, Havenstein signed affidavits stating that Maryland was his primary residence when he applied for the Maryland Homestead tax credit.

Maryland law defines “principal residence” as follows: “Principal residence” has been defined to mean the “one dwelling where the homeowner regularly resides and is the location designated by the owner for the legal purposes of voting, obtaining a driver’s license, and filing income tax returns.”

Critics of Havenstein, particularly Democrats, questioned Havenstein’s declaration of being a full-time New Hampshire resident in order to gain eligibility to run for governor, while also claiming primary residency in Maryland to receive tax credits at the same time.

“Being a statutory resident for income tax purposes doesn’t make you eligible for the homestead property tax credit that Havenstein took. Only those domiciled in Maryland can take that break. Homestead equals domicile and domicile equals homestead,” said former New Hampshire Democratic Party Chair Kathy Sullivan in April when the media began discussing the issue. “Given these facts, Havenstein is left with a very uncomfortable situation – either he was domiciled in Maryland as recently as 2011 and therefore ineligible to run for Governor of New Hampshire or he misled Maryland tax officials to get a tax break he wasn’t entitled to.”

In June, Havenstein requested that the Ballot Law Commission make a ruling declaring that he met the seven-year residency requirement that gubernatorial candidates in New Hampshire must adhere to. In his petition, he claimed that he did stay longer in Maryland than New Hampshire for several years but stated the situation was temporary.

The issue was assumed to be put to rest after the Ballot Commission ruled in his favor. However, with the state of Maryland now ordering $9,000 in back taxes, Havenstein has 30 days to pay the bill.

Former New Hampshire Governor John Sununu blasted Democrats, saying “This is just part of the Democrats’ smear campaign because they are burdened by an incompetent that is making a tough political climate for them,” he said.

“This is just another in a long list of these types of events that Walt Havenstein has brought into the race,” said Andrew Hemingway, Havenstein’s primary opponent. “It’s unfortunate because what it does is every time this happens, it takes away from the issues that are facing this state.”

James Pindell of WMUR-TV weighed in on the news, pointing out that “stories like this, which undermine Havenstein’s argument from day one that he is the most electable candidate, only give Hemingway more momentum.”

Video: NH Republican Gubernatorial Candidate Called Tea Party Members “Teabaggers”

Video has surfaced of Walter Havenstein, the GOP establishment’s pick to challenge Maggie Hassan (D-NH) in the upcoming New Hampshire gubernatorial race, dismissing Tea Party conservatives as “teabaggers” while speaking to a group of business students at the University of New Hampshire. The video is from 2010, during the height of the Tea Party’s popularity.

“We got a lot of problems in this country,” said Havenstein.  “The teabaggers, or whatever they are, they’ve been telling us that all summer long. Alright?”

“Isn’t that who they are? I’m a little out of touch,” Havenstein continued, smiling.

The usage of a sexual slur is Havenstein’s latest folly. As previously reported, Havenstein is the former CEO of Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), a tech company that was awarded billions in federal contracts and implicated in in a spyware hack on security software that happened to involve the NSA. He was still CEO of SAIC at the time of this video.

Havestein insisted in a press release that he was using the word in a positive manner. According to the Union Leader:

“As anyone who watches the full video can clearly see, I was talking about the positive impact that the Republican victory in the 2010 elections had on shaking up the status quo. So it was obviously a poor choice of words. The great thing about our democracy is that we get to shake things up every two years, which is what I want to do this November.”

This past weekend, at the Coalition of New Hampshire Taxpayers straw poll and picnic in Hillsborough, Havenstein was approached by attendee Dennis Hamel. Hamel explained to Havenstein that the word “teabagger” is a “trigger word” used by opponents of Republicans to specifically incite anger, and had asked Havenstein to apologize. “How should I react when you referred to me, my wife, most of the people in this room, and millions of patriotic Americans with a homosexual slur?” Hamel asked Havenstein. Havenstein responded that Hamel should watch the full video of his speech, and Hamel replied that “a very sincere and public apology is in order.” Havenstein did not reply.

Republican candidate for governor Andrew Hemingway responded to Havenstein’s video slur in a statement:

“Whether one likes the ‘Tea Party’ or doesn’t like the ‘Tea Party,’ everyone should be offended by this. People have referred to me as a Tea Partier and I always say this: If you mean an average citizen worried about the future of our country as it relates to over-taxation, over-regulation and limited liberty who is willing to stand up and work? Then fine. That’s who these people are.”

Hemingway was also in attendance at the CNHT straw poll, and gave a speech following Havenstein’s that began pointedly describing the beginning of the Tea Party organization in New Hampshire. “I’m curious, how many of you were at the very first Tea Party that was started in New Hampshire? How many of you were there for that?” Hemingway asked the crowd.

Hemingway went on to discuss the work done over the last four years by Tea Party and liberty-minded Republicans fighting for lower taxes and reduced spending, while Havenstein “was living in Maryland, speaking at groups passing derogatory comments about the Tea Party.”

“This is unacceptable. This is unacceptable from the likes of Rachel Maddow, and this is unacceptable from the likes of a Republican candidate running, asking for your vote. I am offended, we should all be offended that this type of behavior exists,” Hemingway said. “We must have an apology for this type of action.” Hemingway bested Havenstein the straw poll 111-43.

The video of Hemingway’s speech is available below.

Chris Christie To Campaign For NSA Contractor Havenstein

Concord, NH- Chris Christie, the governor of New Jersey plagued with multiple scandals, has made his choice for governor in the upcoming race in New Hampshire: former NSA contractor Walt Havenstein. Christie will be campaigning on behalf of Havenstein later this month.

Christie, a favorite of the GOP establishment, is now famous for “Bridgegate” in which he played a role jamming traffic to the George Washington Bridge in an act of political retribution towards his adversaries. He was involved in an additional scandal in which his administration withheld Hurricane Sandy relief funds and refused to release them until Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer would approve a real estate project from The Rockefeller Group, a real estate developer that has past ties with Christie’s administration.

Most recently it was discovered that one of Christie’s friends and biggest campaign backers, John Hanson, was awarded $106 million in NJ state funding for his nonprofit after Christie signed amendments to various state laws which conveniently made Hanson’s nonprofit qualified for subsidies.

These three examples make very clear that Christie indulges in a great deal of crony capitalism. It’s been speculated that Christie will make a run for President; in the meantime, Christie is lending his influence in New Hampshire by campaigning for Havenstein.

As previously reported, Walt Havenstein is challenging liberty Republican candidate Andrew Hemingway in the upcoming gubernatorial primary. Hemingway is favored in New Hampshire by liberty-minded residents and has publicly criticized the very subject that Havenstein knows quite well: the NSA.

Havenstein is the former CEO of Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), a large tech company that has been awarded billions of dollars in government contracts. SAIC ranks #4 in companies that have received government contracts. Quite notable is the fact that SAIC was implicated in a spyware hack on security software that also pointed to the NSA.

New Hampshire faces two choices in the Republican gubernatorial primary: Hemingway, who offers an extensive policy to protect New Hampshire residents from the NSA and other forms of government overreach, and Havenstein, a Maryland resident who headed an NSA contracting company and has Governor Christie, a crony capitalist, at his side.

Most recently New Hampshire passed a bill restricting the NSA data collection of its citizens. The bill is waiting Democrat governor Maggie Hassan’s signature.

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Maryland Resident, Former NSA Contractor, to Run for NH Governor

We reported last week that Walt Havenstein, a resident of Maryland, has plans to file to run for Governor in New Hampshire. New Hampshire’s Constitution clearly states that (emphasis added):

[Art.] 42. [Election of Governor, Return of Votes; Electors; If No Choice, Legislature to Elect One of Two Highest Candidates; Qualifications for Governor.] The governor shall be chosen biennially in the month of November; and the votes for governor shall be received, sorted, counted, certified and returned, in the same manner as the votes for senators; and the secretary shall lay the same before the senate and house of representatives, on the first Wednesday following the first Tuesday of January to be by them examined, and in case of an election by a plurality of votes through the state, the choice shall be by them declared and published. And the qualifications of electors of the governor shall be the same as those for senators; and if no person shall have a plurality of votes, the senate and house of representatives shall, by joint ballot elect one of the two persons, having the highest number of votes, who shall be declared governor. And no person shall be eligible to this office, unless at the time of his election, he shall have been an inhabitant of this state for 7 years next preceding, and unless he shall be of the age of 30 years.

So that made us wonder: who is Walt Havenstein and why is he running for Governor of New Hampshire?

Havenstein is the former CEO of tech company SAIC. From SAIC’s website:

SAIC consults on the design, development, and use of products, parts, and programs for a diverse array of government and enterprise missions. We help optimize infrastructure, engineering processes, operational approaches, and logistics and supply chain management by offering a wide range of business and mission strategy services, including:

  • Analysis, reporting, and consulting on national policy and technical business issues.
  • International security, defense, and cultural advisory.
  • Implementation of organizational change processes.
  • Government contract project management and program support.

He retired in June of 2012, but not before securing $5.9 billion dollars in federal contracts. That ranks them 4th in companies that received federal contracts.

Source: WashingtonTechnology.com

It is no secret that SAIC is awarded billions of dollars a year in contracts, but what are these contracts for? According to Slate, SAIC may have been contracted by the government to place malware on Tor networks and websites (sometimes referred to as “dark web”). Dark web is usually used by journalists and activists who wish to transmit information anonymously. Sometimes, just like the regular web, it’s used for criminal activity.

The malware was used to collect data on website traffic and visitor information and activity and send it back to a data collection center. The IP address the malware was sending the information to was traced back to an address near Reston, Va. Further investigation found that a SAIC IP address, that was alloted to the NSA, was receiving the malware information.

Is it a coincidence that Havenstein announced his run shortly after gubernatorial candidate Andrew Hemingway announced his “Privacy First” platform?

From Hemingway’s Privacy First platform:

Outline: The concept of privacy is paramount in the protection of individual liberties.  The degree to which the government, either federal, state or local, corporations or curious individuals have the ability to gather information on anyone for any reason is the degree to which our privacy has been invaded.  Therefore, it is paramount that government must do everything in its power to prevent this incursion.  Government’s job should be to protect citizens from this intrusion and not to be the purveyor of it.  The advancement of digital capabilities and technology without legislative protection has led to an “open season” mentality on information and data collection. Whether it is through our medical and health organizations, our schools, or the blatancy of metadata collection by the National Security Agency (NSA), it is incumbent upon all government and political leaders to develop ways to protect the privacy of Americans and specifically, Granite Staters.

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