The Associated Press projects that U.S. Rep. Chris Pappas will defeat Republican challenger Matt Mowers in the race for N.H.’s 1st Congressional District. It is the first time a congressional representative from either party from the district has won consecutive terms in over 10 years.
AP called the race at 12:40 a.m. on Wednesday. As of 12:23 p.m. on Wednesday, AP reported Pappas earning 51.43 % of the vote with 97.44 % precincts reporting. Mowers received 46.17 % of the votes, and Libertarian candidate Zachary Dumont received 2.4 %.
Shortly after the AP announcement, Pappas declared victory outside of the Puritan Backroom in Manchester. “The people of New Hampshire deserve leaders who will put the interests of New Hampshire first,” said Pappas Tuesday night.
Mowers commented on the race early Wednesday morning. “I want to congratulate Congressman Pappas on a hard-fought victory and wish him well as he serves our nation and state… Thank you to every person on the campaign trail I met, I’ll never forget you,” Mowers said in a statement.
Mowers previously worked as a senior White House adviser in the State Department. According to his campaign website, he ran to “usher in a new generation of leadership in Washington that supports our law enforcement community, holds China accountable and will always fight for lower taxes.”
Pappas voted in Manchester early on Tuesday, and spent the rest of the days visiting polling places throughout the district. Pappas said in an interview with The New Hampshire that he was happy with the turnout he was seeing in the state, “ensuring people know how to vote has been really crucial for our campaign especially during a pandemic, and it has paid off as you can see here today.”
Pappas first won his seat during the 2018 mid-term elections. During his time in Congress, Pappas worked to confront the coronavirus (COVID-19) by enhancing unemployment benefits, establishing the Paycheck Protection program, expanding tax credits for small businesses, and expanding federal tax deductions for charitable donations.
“I’m running for re-election to do all I can to ensure New Hampshire weathers these crises and thrives in the future,” said Pappas in a previous interview with TNH.
Pappas’s victory is one of many Democratic congressional wins across the country. Tuesday night, the AP projected the Democrats will continue to keep their majority in the U.S. House of Representatives.