New Hampshire Dem's Ad Portrays Left-Wing Lawyer as Blue-Collar Mechanic

Rep. Chris Pappas appears in auto repair shop with Alan Raff, chairman of Manchester Democrats

Attorney Alan Raff and Rep. Chris Pappas (D., N.H.) / YouTube
August 11, 2022

The blue-collar mechanic in a New Hampshire Democrat's latest campaign ad is actually a lawyer and local Democratic Party chairman.

The ad, which Rep. Chris Pappas's (D., N.H.) campaign released Tuesday, shows the Democrat talking to a mechanic at a repair shop—but the "mechanic," according to the New Hampshire Journal, is an attorney at a Concord law office and the chairman of the Manchester Democrats. The attorney, Alan Raff, has also served as president of the Manchester Young Democrats and worked as a Democratic staffer in the state Senate and for U.S. senator Jeanne Shaheen (D., N.H.).

"Running a small business is hard work," narrates Pappas, whose family founded the popular Puritan Backroom restaurant in Manchester in 1917, over a clip of Raff lifting a garage door at an auto repair shop. "There are early mornings and late nights."

New Hampshire GOP spokesman Andrew Mahaleris said Pappas, whose net worth is $5 million, is out of touch with the working class.

"Born in the lap of luxury to wealthy parents, Chris Pappas has never worked a day in his life and doesn't understand the struggle of working-class Granite Staters," Mahaleris told the Washington Free Beacon. "His new ad is just another ploy by an out-of-touch Democrat elitist trying to fool voters."

Pappas's campaign did not respond to a request for comment.

The congressman is just the latest Democrat to face accusations of inauthenticity while attempting to appeal to working-class voters. Sen. Michael Bennet (D., Colo.) obtained a one-day fishing license so that the multimillionaire could appear as a fly fisherman in his latest campaign ad, Axios reported last week.

Pappas says in his ad that he is "standing up to [his] own party" on the issue of stock trading for elected officials. The New Hampshire Democrat, however, has voted with President Joe Biden 100 percent of the time. Only one-fifth of New Hampshire voters want Biden to run for reelection in 2024, according to a University of New Hampshire poll released last month.

Elected to Congress in 2018, Pappas won his 2020 reelection bid by 5 points. His seat is labeled a tossup this year by the Cook Political Report.