New Hampshire Reform Party to Sue Buchanan

July 7, 2008 - 8:25 PM

(CNSNews.com) - The Reform Party of New Hampshire said it intends to sue presidential campaign of Pat Buchanan for $10 million, for what a party official contends is the wrongful use of the party's name.

John Talbot, the party's acting state chairman, said Buchanan, who hopes to be the national party's presidential nominee, wrongfully used the name in a mailing to party members. The mailing in question announced an April 1st meeting in Manchester, the state's largest city, which Talbot contends it promoted as the party's state convention.

According to Talbot, the meeting is not the state convention, nor did Buchanan have permission to use the party's name, or elect delegates to the August 15th national convention, to be held in Long Beach, CA.

Talbot said he plans to meet with a representative of the New Hampshire Attorney General and the secretary of state, in hopes of obtaining a restraining order against the meeting, while also keeping the campaign from using the state party name.

"These kind of bullying and heavy-handed tactics fly in the face of everything the Reform Party stands for in New Hampshire," said Talbot, who characterized the damage done to the state part as "enormous."

"We have our members being misled that there is a New Hampshire convention and that we have endorsed Pat Buchanan by asking him to speak," Talbot added.

"There have been questions about various tactics the Buchanan campaign has used, but I think these frivolous lawsuits are destructive to the party and I think people need to sit down and iron out their differences," said Jim Mangia, secretary to the national party.

In addition to filing suit in the Granite State, Talbot said he would contact the U.S. Attorney's Office, hoping the federal agency will bring mail fraud charges against the campaign, since the mailing came from the candidate's Vienna, VA. headquarters.

This is not the first dispute between the Buchanan campaign and the state party hierarchy. In September, party officials postponed their convention, after Buchanan supporters threatened to crash the gathering and get their own supporters elected to top party offices. By the time the session was held, in October, Buchanan supporters had already left the party and formed their own group.