The longshot Democrat who is challenging former Governor Jeanne Shaheen in a primary for the US Senate in New Hampshire next year is trying to gain support by taking on Washington Democrats who are supporting Shaheen.
Jay Buckey, a former astronaut and Dartmouth Medical School professor, is the only one of three candidates who didn't not abandon his US Senate campaign once Shaheen entered the race.
The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee in Washington had been trying to recruit Shaheen into the race because polls over the summer showed she had the best chance of defeating freshman Senator John E. Sununu.
"The DSCC seems to be saying that, because the stakes are so high for the 2008 election, we canít afford to trust democracy Ė and New Hampshire's primary system --to choose the best candidate," Buckey writes in a fund-raising email. "But the past seven years have shown us where this kind of thinking leads."
Buckey is hoping he can re-create the dynamic that took place last year in New Hampshire when another unknown activist, Carol Shea-Porter defeated the state House Minority Leader for the Democratic nomination for Congress even though he was favorite of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.