In an interview with the Nashua Telegraph Speaker O’Brien demonstrates an amazing capacity for, shall we call it, revisionist history.
Yesterday, in the hearing on Rep. Susan Emerson’s anti bullying bill, a statement was read from Rep. Emerson, detailing the incident in which she was shouted at for offering amendments to the state budget which would restore services which Rep. Emerson, because of her years of service on the Health and Human Services Committee, thought necessary for the ongoing health and welfare the citizens of NH.
Speaker O’Brien’s response? He pulls the “emotion card.”
“She was emotional about it, but not because of anything I said. It pains me to this day to say Rep. Emerson has fabricated all of this,” O’Brien added.
This is, of course, the appropriate response if you a bullying a small woman who wears magnificent hats.
But what about the comments of Rep. Timothy Copeland? Rep. Copeland spoke about overhearing the Speaker’s encounter with Rep. Emerson. He says he heard a one-sided yelling match. Rep. Copeland also testified that the Speaker promised to ensure that Copeland would not be re-elected if Copeland offered an amendment of his own.
Rep. Copeland is a former police investigator and a volunteer firefighter, so playing the emotion card is not an option. What is the Speaker’s response? He says it never happened.
O’Brien said the entire story was fabricated and that he never spoke with Copeland after meeting with Emerson.
“I had one conversation with this representative, and it was, ‘Welcome to the House, Rep. Copeland,'” O’Brien said. “I later learned that his liberal agenda was not one in concert with the Republican caucus. Other than that, I’ve never spoken with him.”
Total denial. Not just a river in Egypt, but present on a daily basis in the NH House. We have all witnessed or overheard the Speaker’s tantrums. His account here leaves me breathless. And I wonder if the Speaker of the New Hampshire House should not be a person with a better grasp on…reality?