archived 06-30-00
Archive file# o063000a

Democrats asks Lucas to stop
'reptilian attacks' on Shaheen

Democrats asks Lucas to stop 'reptilian attacks' on Shaheen

©1998 By The Associated Press

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) ó State Democratic Party leader Jeff Woodburn called on Republican gubernatorial nominee Jay Lucas to stop his "reptilian attacks" on Gov. Jeanne Shaheen and stop spending his own money on the campaign Thursday.

"I challenge Jay Lucas to start anew," Woodburn said at a joint news conference with state Republican Party leader Steve Duprey. "Itís time for Jay Lucas to put his wallet back in his pocket and run for office like everyone else does."

Woodburn was referring to the fact that Lucas loaned his campaign nearly $500,000 of the roughly $900,000 he raised and spent before last Tuesdayís primary election.

The news conference, which was supposed to be a look back at the primaries, instead turned into a debate about campaign tactics.

Duprey praised Lucas for spending his own money on the campaign. He said Lucasí investment showed his deep concern for the people of New Hampshire.

"Itís nothing to be ashamed of," Duprey said earlier. "I think we respect that in New Hampshire."

Lucas, who promised a "positive" campaign against Shaheen, was admonished by Duprey in the primary for running a television ad that misled voters about the record of his chief rival, state Sen. Jim Rubens, of Hanover.

But Duprey saw nothing wrong with Lucasí calling a news conference Wednesday to denounce an education funding amendment he called the "Shaheen amendment," even though it was proposed by House Speaker Donna Sytek, a Republican. After months of opposing any constitutional amendment, Shaheen agreed last week to support Sytekís proposal, which would guarantee minimum state aid to schools of $225 million per year.

"Heís trying to put the onus on Shaheen," Duprey said. "I think itís smart."

Duprey instead attacked Shaheen for her statement criticizing Lucas for opposing Sytekís amendment. He said the governorís statement, which was issued on governorís office letterhead, should have come from her campaign.

Shaheen spokesman Doug Hattaway said Lucas injected himself into the debate over the amendment, so the governorís response was a part of her job, not the campaign.

"The statement was about a vote before the House, and thatís official business," Hattaway said. "Sheís still the governor. Thereís still a lot of official business she has to take care of."


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