Representative-elect Ann McLane Kuster, D-Hopkinton, met with a handful supporters at the Windmill Restaurant on the Concord Heights on Nov. 7, savoring her solid victory on Election Day against U.S. Rep. Charles Bass, for the 2nd Congressional District seat.
Kuster greeted childhood friends, supporters, and staffers with hugs and good cheer, saying she was still running on adrenaline from the night before.
At one point, the conversation turned to her late mother – Susan McLane – a Republican state Senator in Concord – who supporters noted would be so proud of her triumphant race. McLane noted that her mom was a mentor to U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen and Shaheen had been a mentor to her too.
Part of her victory, she believed, was backlash from a Bass advertisement that featured a woman who looked like Kuster doing a tap dance. She noted that some people who saw the ad without the sound thought it was one of her ads. One woman told her that anyone who could dance like that, deserved to go to Washington, D.C.
“I didn’t have the heart to tell her that it wasn’t our ad,” Kuster laughed.
However, when voters actually listened to the ad, they became enraged, she said.
“The funny thing about the ad was that my name was huge,” she said. “It was name recognition. Not everybody knew who I was. But then, the funny part was, that when people actually listened to the ads … that was a whole other reaction. It was demeaning … it made people very upset. It wasn’t just disrespectful to me, it was disrespectful to women.”
She added that she couldn’t wait to look at some of the statistical data from the election to see if turnout increased among women when compared to previous elections.
Kuster, whose parents were friends with Bass’ parents, said that he was gracious in defeat and during concession, commending him for offering to make sure the transition was smooth.