BEDFORD, N.H. (AP) -- The New Hampshire Republican Party’s new chairwoman vowed Saturday to end the perception of the GOP as the "party of old white guys."
Former congressional candidate Jennifer Horn was elected state party chairwoman at its annual meeting in Bedford. She takes over leadership following significant losses in last year’s election.
"From now on they (the Democratic Party) don’t define us; we will define them," Horn told a crowd of about 430 voting members who attended the meeting. "We must put to rest forever the idea that the Republican Party is the party that doesn’t care, doesn’t care about women, doesn’t care about children, doesn’t care about minorities ... that the Republican Party is the party of old white guys."
Much of the meeting’s discussion was about why Democrats were successful throughout the state and country last year and what the GOP can do better in 2014.
Republicans lost both U.S. House seats when Charlie Bass and Frank Guinta were defeated in November, while Democrat Maggie Hassan claimed the governor’s office.
"We had a lot of interesting results in the last election and many were not to our liking," said outgoing chairman Wayne MacDonald, who did not seek another term.
McDonald mentioned the need to modernize the party’s system of voter data, reaching out to groups that typically don’t vote Republican and standing behind "the values that give our party its purpose."
Horn is a former radio talk show host and newspaper columnist and heads We the People, a nonprofit that aims to increase civic engagement and educate the public about limited government, personal responsibility and other principles. She won the position over Andrew Hemingway, of Bristol, a former Newt Gingrich campaign worker.
Horn is a resident of Nashua and was the 2008 GOP nominee in the 2nd Congressional District before losing to Democrat Paul Hodes.