Hassan Harassment

Supporter tries to block cameras from asking questions

Maggie Hassan

Maggie Hassan / AP


A supporter of New Hampshire Democratic Senate hopeful Maggie Hassan attempted to physically block a campaign tracker from asking questions, according to a new video.

The confrontation happened as Hassan, a two-term governor, left a campaign event. A Republican video tracker can be seen attempting to ask Hassan whether she is “running a stealth campaign,” referring to her lack of press access and giving public interviews. The tracker is immediately confronted by a young male.

“Don’t touch me,” the videographer says as the camera pans across the face of the Hassan backer.

“I’m not touching you,” the unidentified man responds.

Political campaigns and advocacy groups routinely employ videographers known as “trackers” to follow opponents on the trail, hoping to capture embarrassing moments in what used to be relatively private gatherings.

Hassan is seen exiting the venue with a three-woman entourage, one of whom blocks the camera.

“Governor Hassan, why are you running a stealth campaign that is avoiding the issues?” the tracker asks.

As he attempts to follow her out the door to continue asking questions, the camera whirls around as if held back.

“Let go of my camera. Let go of my camera,” the tracker says.

“I’m not touching you,” the unidentified man says.

The National Republican Senate Committee released the video on Monday. The tracker follows the trio outside. Hassan, who is a top surrogate for Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton, does not answer any questions. Hassan is widely seen as a strong candidate to challenge incumbent Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte, but has faced criticism in the press for relying on talking points in her rare public statements.

The Hassan campaign did not respond to request seeking comment about whether or not the man was employed by the campaign or a supporter, nor would she say whether the actions captured on the video were appropriate.

New Hampshire Republican Party Chairman Jennifer Horn said that the Hassan campaign should be held accountable for the actions.

“It’s bad enough that Governor Hassan has repeatedly refused to answer questions about where she stands on critical issues or hold a single town hall. Now it appears she’s using her staff to intimidate and physically block people who want to ask her questions,” she said in an email to the Washington Free Beacon. “Granite Staters deserve better. Is Hassan going to continue her blind support for Hillary Clinton and start using a rope line, too? Don’t bother asking her, she won’t answer.”

The New Hampshire primary will be held on Tuesday.

The video can be seen in full here:

Bill McMorris   Email Bill | Full Bio | RSS
Bill McMorris is a staff writer for the Washington Free Beacon. He joins the Beacon from the Franklin Center for Government and Public Integrity, where he was managing editor of Old Dominion Watchdog. He was a 2010 Robert Novak Fellow with the Phillips Foundation, where he studied state pension shortfalls. His work has been featured on CNN, Fox News, The Economist, Colbert Report, and numerous print publications and radio stations. He lives in Alexandria, Va, with his wife and three daughters. His Twitter handle is @FBillMcMorris. His email address is mcmorris@freebeacon.com.

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