A top supporter of former President Trump in the crucial early voting state of New Hampshire is jumping ship and joining rival Republican candidate Vivek Ramaswamy’s campaign.
Longtime state Rep. Fred Doucette, who served as New Hampshire co-chair of Trump’s 2016 and 2020 presidential campaigns, is joining the Ramaswamy campaign as a senior strategist and co-chair in the Granite State, which holds the first primary and second overall contest in the GOP’s presidential nominating calendar.
“Vivek is the person who will deliver the America First agenda, without the drama,” Doucette said in a statement released on Thursday by the Ramaswamy campaign.
Ramaswamy, a first-time candidate and multi-millionaire health care and tech sector entrepreneur, best-selling author, conservative political commentator, and culture wars crusader, has heavily campaigned in New Hampshire – as well as the first in the nation caucus state of Iowa – since declaring his candidacy on the Fox News Channel in late February. Ramaswamy returns to the Granite State next week for what his campaign touts is a bus tour through all 10 New Hampshire counties.
“Fred gets things done. He has a proven track record of leadership, delivering results and winning,” Ramaswamy said in a statement. “We’re taking America First to the next level, and I am confident Fred will be a key asset in our mission in the crucible of New Hampshire politics. We’re ready to roll and revive the American experiment, starting with the Granite state.”
Doucette, the current deputy majority leader in the Republican-controlled state House of Representatives, was on hand as Ramaswamy held a town-hall style event in Manchester, New Hampshire, in late February. He has met with Ramaswamy a number of times since, noting, “I’ve been talking with Vivek for several weeks now, and he’s an inspirational candidate who can energize Republicans and unite the country.”
In an interview with Fox News, Doucette said, “I think we have a path forward in Vivek… We’ve got a guy that has a message that resonates, an America First message.”
“He gives people someone to vote for, not someone to vote against,” Doucette emphasized.
Doucette stressed, “I believe that President Trump’s agenda worked” and said his decision not to support the former president as he runs a third straight time for the White House was “terribly hard.”
“I came on board in March of 2015 and we were fired up. We were energized. We were engaged. We were about getting it done,” Doucette recalled. But he described the current Trump campaign as “flat.”
Doucette argued that Trump’s 2024 campaign “is not taking a page and looking forward” and said that impression “played into a lot of my decision-making.” He added that Trump supporters in the key primary and general election battleground state “were disappointed” in some of the decisions made by the Trump campaign.
Doucette is not the only New Hampshire Trump campaign veteran joining Ramaswamy’s team.
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Josh Whitehouse, a Republican strategist who as a state representative during the 2016 cycle was the first elected official in New Hampshire to endorse Trump and built coalitions for the Trump campaign, will serve as Ramaswamy’s New Hampshire state director.
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