By MICHAEL KITCH, LACONIA DAILY SUN
LACONIA — Gov. Chris Sununu led a chorus of prominent Republican leaders who joined their Democratic counterparts in calling on Rep. Robert Fisher of Laconia to resign his seat in the New Hampshire House of Representatives following disclosure that he founded and contributed to a online forum reviled for its misogynistic content.
On Tuesday, the Daily Beast released an extensive report identifying Fisher as the creator of The Red Pill, which included numerous statements he has made disparaging the character, status and behavior of women as well as appearing to condone gender discrimination and sexual violence against them.
In a prepared statement on Tuesday, Fisher, who is 31, acknowledged that the painful dissolution of a relationship when he was in his 20s led him to make "injudicious" statements about women, which he claimed were taken out of context, and charged the conclusions drawn from them "border on slanderous." Fisher did not return calls yesterday.
Sununu found the remarks attributed to Fisher "horrendous and repulsive" and told WMUR-TV that his resignation "is certainly in order."
The governor was echoed by Rep. Shawn Jasper, the Speaker of the House, who said while he lacked the authority to compel Fisher to resign, "I wish he would resign. It would be the honorable thing to do under the circumstances.
Jeanie Forrester of Meredith, who chairs the New Hampshire Republican Party, said Fisher's "comments are offensive and the fact that he made them under the shadow of internet anonymity tells you he knows they are offensive." After initially on Tuesday saying that Fisher's future in the House rested with his constituents, not with her, a day later she joined the governor in urging him to resign.
Likewise, Jennifer Horn of Nashua, Forrester's predecessor as chair of the GOP, called Fisher's statements "despicable" and described him as "an embarrassment to our state," who "contributes to a society that minimizes sexual assault and makes it more difficult for women to report these crimes and seek justice."
Not long after the report appeared, Rep. Steve Shurtleff of Penacook, the House Democratic Leader, approached Jasper about removing Fisher from the House and the New Hampshire Democratic Party ensured that the report reached the media throughout the state.
Fisher, who first ran for one of the four House seats in Laconia as a Democrat in 2012, was elected to a seat representing both Laconia and Belmont in 2014 and re-elected last year.