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Politics
0000017a-15d9-d736-a57f-17ff8d070000Race: District 1, U.S. House of RepresentativesParty: RepublicanPolitical Experience: 2010-2012 - U.S. House2006-2009 - Mayor of Manchester2001-2005 - New Hampshire HousePersonal: Married, with two children; lives in ManchesterEducation: Bachelor of Arts, Assumption College; Masters, Franklin Pierce Law CenterCandidate WebsiteIssuesGuinta wants to repeal the Affordable Care Act and enact "market-based reforms" that include allowing insurance to be purchased across state lines."[I]f we could eradicate those state line borders, just start with our region, so every carrier now has the ability to compete not just in New Hampshire but in New England as a region, you will bring more competitive market forces to this area, probably upwards of 30 carriers or more."On immigration, Guinta opposes a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants already in the country. He says the U.S. must hire more border patrol agents and construct a wall in "high traffic areas." The current crisis of immigrants fleeing Central America for the U.S., he says, is the result of President Obama's policy of "prosecutorial discretion" to allow some individuals to remain here: "But the vast majority of those individuals can be returned to their home countries with their families."Guinta says he is "disappointed in a whole host of issues" related to the Obama administration's foreign policy, accusing the president of "disengagement" and lack of leadership. While he does not support "boots on the ground" against the Islamic States of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), Guinta says the militant group cannot be allowed to grow. "The president is going to have come up with a strategy that doesn’t just contain, but has to eradicate ISIS because Americans would rather, I think, finish this now than deal with it for years and years and years and allow ISIS to become the next Al Qaeda."

Ashooh, Guinta Neck and Neck for CD1 Republican Ticket

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Paige Sutherland/NHPR
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Rich Ashooh told his supporters Tuesday night the race was too close to call.

The Congressional race for New Hampshire’s 1st District was a nail biter between Republican Rich Ashooh and incumbent Frank Guinta.

Guinta's headquarters Tuesday night was at Murphy's Taproom in Manchester. Meanwhile just down the road Ashooh held his at the Italian restaurant Fratello's.

Once the polls closed at 8 p.m. Tuesday, the results flip flopped all night – Guinta in the lead one minute, Ashooh the next.

But when 10:45 rolled around Ashooh came out to address his supporters, but at the time he didn’t have many answers for them.

“You have given, I’d say me but really us, the gift of your support and your friendship, and I wish I could give you the gift of clarity but I can’t," Ashooh said as the crowd laughed.

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Credit Paige Sutherland/NHPR
Jack Dowd, former Mayor of Derry, and his wife said they expected this race to be a tight one.

That clarity is something many in the crowd didn’t expect to come early, including former Mayor of Derry, Jack Dowd.

“I expected a long night – it’s very hard to run against an incumbent. When you are running up against an incumbent, they get a lot of outside money," Dowd said.

But as the night wrapped up, many of Ashooh’s supporters remained  optimistic – stressing Guinta’s campaign finance violations and the closeness of the results.  

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