A new cast of characters is lining up to shape the debate over New Hampshire's same-sex marriage law next year.
House Bill 437, which repeals the 2009 law legalizing same-sex marriage, is set for a vote by the full House when the representatives reconvene in January. A constitutional amendment has also been proposed, seeking to limit marriage to one man and one woman.
Backing the repeal effort, Concord political strategist Michael Dennehy signed on last week as a lobbyist for the National Organization for Marriage, joining gubernatorial candidate Kevin Smith, who has also registered on behalf of the group. Meanwhile, Patrick Hynes, a communications consultant in Concord, announced his July Fourth Forum PAC is planning a strong push for repeal.
"We are going to play heavily in the effort to restore traditional marriage in the Granite State," Hynes said in an email.
Both Dennehy and Hynes were part of John McCain's 2008 presidential campaign; Dennehy was McCain's national political director while Hynes was an online communications consultant. This time, neither are affiliated with presidential campaigns - Hynes was a Tim Pawlenty backer, Dennehy was part of Haley Barbour's exploratory team - giving them time and energy to focus on the same-sex marriage issue.