First-Time GOP Candidate Flips NH District

Former President Donald Trump was not the only Republican who had a big night in New Hampshire on Tuesday.

Michael Murphy, a GOP state House candidate for Coos County District 6, scored a win over Democratic rival Edith Tucker, who had represented District 5 for three consecutive terms ending in 2022. That election was held on the same day as the presidential primary, which resulted in a commanding victory by former President Donald Trump over his only remaining serious rival, former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley.

Murphy’s victory not only flipped the seat from Democratic to Republican control, but it sent a broader political message in light of President Joe Biden’s 12-point advantage in the district during the 2020 general election.

A special election was held in December after the incumbent Democratic Rep. William Hatch announced his retirement for health-related reasons.

Murphy, a U.S. Navy Seabee veteran who worked in a local paper mill for 20 years and chose this race as his first political bid, laid out his agenda ahead of last month’s election.

“I just know what people care about,” he said at the time, emphasizing his focus on protecting the First and Second Amendment rights of the residents in the district.

“I believe in the protection of our rights and education,” Murphy added. “I believe people are concerned about that.”

Education has been a hot-button issue in recent years, and the first-time candidate said he would prioritize parental rights if elected.

Specifically, he spoke out against a trend that he described as “taking the rights away from the parents and giving more rights to teachers,” declaring that it is “not right.”

Furthermore, Murphy expressed a desire to provide adequate funding “for all students, and for all special education students.”

His nearly eight-point win over Tucker on Tuesday will expand the Republican Party’s narrow 198-195 majority in the state House.

On a national scale, of course, Trump’s victory was the biggest news of the night, and he acknowledged the role of New Hampshire voters who showed up to support his bid for a third-straight GOP presidential nomination.

“I’m very honored by the result,” he said.