Cabletron Founder Wins New Hampshire Primary


Former cable-equipment executive Craig Benson won the Republican nomination for New Hampshire governor last week in a high-spending, three-way race that included retired U.S. Sen. Gordon Humphrey.

Benson, a 47-year-old multimillionaire who spent a reported $9 million on the primary, was founder of Cabletron Systems Inc., now Enterasys Networks Inc. He faces Democrat Mark Fernald in November.

According to the Concord (N.H.) Monitor, Benson's cost per vote beat the national record of $100, set last year by New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, by a considerable amount.

Benson promised to improve the state's fiscal picture and resist a state income tax favored by Fernald.

"[Benson] knows how to run the state as a business. That's basically what voters bought into," said Maura Weston, who is finance chairman of the New Hampshire GOP and government relations counsel for the New England Cable & Telecommunications Association.

In another New Hampshire race, state Rep. Jeb Bradley won the Republican primary for an open U.S. House seat. Bradley played an important role in defeating a state bill aimed at requiring cable operators to provide access to unaffiliated Internet-service providers, Weston said.