Republican candidate for U.S. Senate Bryant “Corky” Messner came to Keene State College on Friday January 31. This event was catered by Chipotle, a company that Messner has strong ties to and represented as an attorney for years. Messner, who graduated from West Point, went on to have careers as an Army Ranger, an entrepreneur and an attorney. Messner is running against Democratic incumbent Jeanne Shaheen, whom Messner criticized throughout his speech. Messner asserted that he is a man of the people and Shaheen is a “career politician.”
“Twenty years ago a young man came into my office, and he had a dream. He had this restaurant and he asked me to help him grow this restaurant. And that was Chipotle Mexican Grill,” said Messner. Messner went on to provide legal services for Chipotle, including when the company was being investigated for an E. coli outbreak in 2015.
“I’m a job creator and a problem solver,” said Messner. He discussed the jobs created by his law firm, Messner Reeves LLP, and the businesses that the firm has helped over the years.
Messner is proud of the fact that he was raised in a blue-collar home and his platform is based around his idea that liberals are turning America socialist, which he believes is robbing future generations of their opportunity to pursue the American Dream the way that Messner did. According to the New Hampshire Union Leader, Messner intends to divert funds for Planned Parenthood to organizations that facilitate adoption.
President of the Keene State Republicans Johnny Iacobucci was in attendance at the event.
“I think he has a lot of attributes that would make him a good senator if he were to be elected. I didn’t know of him until recently. I learned that there were three Republicans running and I decided to educate myself. I found that I agreed with him on a lot of things,” said Iacobucci.
Iacobucci and other members of the KSC Republicans met and ate dinner with Messner in December of 2019. A Cheshire County Republican dinner was held and the KSC Republicans learned that an anonymous benefactor had paid for their tickets. Iacobucci explained that the club would normally not have gone to this event because it is expensive and they have limited funds.
“But Corky actually paid for our tickets and we actually got to sit at the table with him and had the opportunity to ask him some questions. It was an awesome experience and a great gesture from a candidate that you don’t often see for somebody small like us,” said Iacobucci.
“I’m grateful that this country has afforded me the opportunity to dream and dream big, to live the American Dream. And that can be different for everyone,” said Messner. Messner said that one should pursue their passions and interests while they are young and to not be afraid of failure.
“Keene State is a really great school and I’ve hired a bunch of KSC graduates and they have all been exceptionally good workers,” said local resident Dave DeWitt.
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