Republican Bruce Crochetiere suddenly dropped out Wednesday of New Hampshire’s 1st Congressional District race, citing “recent developments with his family and business.”
His campaign, launched just four months ago, was the Hampton Falls businessman’s first foray into politics, a fact he often touted when he introduced himself to voters.
But Wednesday, he decided to take himself out of the race.
“After careful consideration and speaking with my family and campaign team, I have decided to suspend my campaign for Congress, effective immediately,” Crochetiere said, in a statement to reporters. “While I know that we are in a strong financial and political position looking ahead to the final two months of the primary, recent developments with both my family and business have caused me to arrive at this difficult – but appropriate – decision.”
Recent campaign finance documents show Crochetiere had given more than $254,000 to his own campaign, and just last week, he participated in a Bedford Republicans meeting and a Rockingham County debate.
Crochetiere said he would not endorse any of the remaining Republican candidates, including state Senator Andy Sanborn or former South Hampton Police Chief Eddie Edwards, who lives in Dover.
The New Hampshire Secretary of State’s office said it’s too late to remove Crochetiere’s name from the September primary ballot, as the filing deadline has passed, and the state will only remove a name if the candidate has died or moved out of the district.
Sanborn, in a statement, welcomed what he said was now a two-man race. "My proven conservative track record puts me haead and shoulders above my opponent, a lifelong government bureaucrat turned lobbyist," he said.
Edwards, who is also a former chief of law enforcement for the New Hampshire State Liquor Commission, has increasingly targeted Sanborn in recent weeks. At one debate, he raised allegations that Sanborn used inappropriate language while a state senator, which Sanborn has called the work of the establishment and his "political enemies."
With Crochetiere out of the race, Edwards contends he is "the only conservative outsider with a lifetime of service" in the race.
Read Crochetiere’s full statement:
“After careful consideration and speaking with my family and campaign team, I have decided to suspend my campaign for Congress, effective immediately. While I know that we are in a strong financial and political position looking ahead to the final two months of the primary, recent developments with both my family and business have caused me to arrive at this difficult – but appropriate – decision.
I announced my candidacy for Congress on May 1st because I have been so very blessed in my life, giving me a strong desire to serve and give back to the communities and people who have been so good to me. Congress is long overdue for a shakeup, requiring new members whose fresh perspectives will allow them to focus on solving problems, not playing politics. I believe that my perspective as an entrepreneur who grew a small startup into a thriving technology company; as a coach for our local youth soccer and softball teams; as a cancer survivor; and as a lifelong Reagan Republican who is completely new to politics, might have been an antidote for some of the gridlock we see too often in Congress, but it is not to be this year.
For the past two and a half months, I have been overwhelmed by the support our campaign has received from business and community leaders throughout NH-01. Their stories and others I have heard on the campaign trail these past few months have inspired me, and I want to especially thank each of them, and our great campaign team, for standing with a political newcomer like me. I also want to thank Eddie Edwards and Andy Sanborn for welcoming me to the race. I enjoyed seeing them on the campaign trail and debating issues and ideas with them both. Competing against them made me a better candidate. I will not be endorsing in the primary, but I respect them for their hard work and conservative Republican message and wish them both well.
While I am ending my campaign today, I know that politics is not the only way to serve or make a difference. I am rededicating myself to finding ways to serve my hometown of Hampton Falls, the Seacoast and our great State. We are truly fortunate to live in New Hampshire, and I look forward to engaging in a meaningful way to make our communities even stronger and more vibrant.
Thank you again to my supporters, my team and to the residents of NH-01 for considering me and my candidacy. God bless.”