"TRADITIONAL VALUES” ADVOCACY. Fueled by the failed effort to repeal the state's same-sex marriage law earlier this year, a group of social conservatives and “politically active Christians of all denominations” have established a new nonprofit issues-advocacy group and state political action committee. They expect to have a “powerful impact” on the 2012 general election and the next session of the Legislature.
Families Across New Hampshire (FANH) is the brainchild of veteran Republican political strategist Michael Dennehy, a Concord lobbyist and former senior advisor to John McCain.
The financial goal for the PAC, Dennehy says, is to spend $150,000 to advocate for the election of “pro-family” candidates for state office during the 2012 elections and for the nonprofit to air issue-advocacy advertising.
While the prime focus will be on the general election, “We may get involved in some primaries if there is a clear distinction, and we will support pro-family Democrats as well,” Dennehy said.
He said the 501(c)(4) FANH advocacy group will raise money, separately from the PAC, from in-state and out-of-state sources. While the PAC must disclose its donors, the advocacy group does not.
Dennehy is the president of the board of directors. Other board members are former Franklin Mayor Tony Giunta, attorney and conservative activist Bryan Gould, new media executive Patrick Hynes, Verity Swayne, president of the New Hampshire Federation of Republican Women; former New Hampshire Republican Party executive director Jen Wrobleski, who will chair the FANH PAC; former New Hampshire for Marriage outreach coordinator Jason Rose; and Christine Peters, president of the Souhegan Valley Republican Women and past president of the New Hampshire Federation of Republican Women.
Dennehy said FANH will have no affiliation with the National Organization for Marriage, the national group that caused a stir in the state by becoming heavily involved in the same-sex marriage battle.
He said a key goal is to keep social issues at the forefront of the debate for governor and other state offices, alongside the economic issues.
In the Republican gubernatorial primary, for instance, both Ovide Lamontagne and Kevin Smith are social conservatives, but both are downplaying those issues and focusing on the economy and fiscal matters.
Dennehy said Cornerstone Action, formerly headed by Smith, “does a good job,” but, “Too often, the politicians in Concord focus exclusively on the budget to measure the relative health” of the state. “They forget that the vibrancy of the family is the true measure of our strength.
“Our goal is to really organize into the thousands,” he said. “From our experience earlier this year on the marriage issue, we identified 4,000 supporters of traditional marriage in a short amount of time.”
He said the target is “to get to 20,000.”
Overall, said Dennehy, the group's issues are “life, religious freedom, parental authority, marriage and then economic policy.”
He said FANH will set up a legislative scorecard and promote various “pledges.”
A website, www.FamiliesNH.org, was launched today.
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Families Across New Hampshire to Spend $150,000 on 2012 Campaign
CONCORD – A new organization formed by social conservatives and politically active Christians of all denominations across the Granite State means to have a powerful impact on the 2012 General Election and the next session of the New Hampshire General Court.
Families Across New Hampshire (FANH), a 501c4 organization, will engage in public education, lobbying and political communications in support of pro-family public policy, such as the right-to-life, the restoration of traditional marriage, parental authority, religious freedom and pro-family tax policies. Families Across New Hampshire will stay committed to its mission of preserving, protecting and restoring traditional values while avoiding other legislative matters that have no direct impact, positive or negative, on the strength of the family. FANH will give voice to thousands of Granite Staters who want to reverse the trend of government eroding the family structure. The organization starts with a core of 4,000 people who expressed support for traditional marriage in the legislative fight earlier this year.
FANH is affiliated with New Hampshire Families PAC, which will advocate directly for the election of pro-family candidates for state office during the 2012 General Election. New Hampshire Families PAC plans to spend $150,000 on the 2012 General Election this fall.
The new organization already sports an impressive voluntary Board of Directors, including longtime political consultants and organizers Michael Dennehy, Jennifer Wrobleski, Patrick Hynes, and well-known conservative activists Bryan Gould, Tony Giunta, Verity Swayne, Christine Peters and Jason Rose.
“Too often, the politicians in Concord focus exclusively on the budget to measure the relative health of our great state,” said Dennehy. “They forget that the vibrancy of the family is the true measure of our strength. Important issues get swept under the rug because the politicians think no one is watching. Well, we are watching. And we will make our voices heard.”
“Just this week we saw an effort to secure more parental authority through educational choice spiked by the Governor’s veto,” said Hynes. “Why on Earth would he kill more choice in education for lower-income families? Because he thinks it’s safe to do so. Well, it’s not.” Hynes said FANH will urge the Legislature to override the Governor’s veto.
FANH is already calling on Granite Staters to rally to defend the traditional marriage plank of the Platform of the New Hampshire Republican State Committee. “Contact Wayne MacDonald and Platform Committee Chairman Jennifer Horn and urge them to support traditional marriage by preserving the language in the current Republican Party Platform,” reads an item on the organization’s Get Involved Web page.
The organization is headquartered in Concord. Its website is www.familiesnh.org.
FANH is a coalition that unites individual families, church leaders of all denominations, civic and community leaders and political leaders behind a shared initiative to protect, preserve and restore traditional values in New Hampshire.
Families Across New Hampshire (FANH) is a Granite State based advocacy organization dedicated to promoting pro-family public policy.
Families Across New Hampshire75 South Main StreetUnit 7, PMB 260Concord, NH 03301