The decision was made last July, when U.S. Rep. Chip Cravaack, R-Minnesota, decided to move his wife and two sons out of the district that he represents and into a $645,000 colonial home on Sheffield Street in Windham.
The move, according to an article published by Minnesota's Star Tribune, was triggered by a seizure suffered by his 10-year-old son in the family's Minnesota home. The goal after that happened was to have the family closer to his wife's job in Boston.
At that time, Cravaack told the paper that he knew he would have a "five-mile target on his back" for the decision, but that he had to take care of his family.
The first shot at that target came quickly, as the same Minnesota paper quoted New Hampshire Democratic Chair Ray Buckley as saying that Cravaack would soon be retiring in New Hampshire "permanently."
Now, as the June candidacy filing period for the Granite State draws closer, a political activist group is attacking Cravaack once more.
Granite State Progress issued a release on April 1 calling out the Minnesota politician for his hurling charges of absenteeism in 2010 toward his Democratic opponent James Oberstar. The campaign move, according to the release, was directed at Oberstar's out-of-state residency in Maryland.
Zandra Rice Hawkins, Executive Director of Granite State Progress, issued a statement blasting Cravaack's little time spent in Minnesota's 8th District.
"If Congressman Cravaack ran in New Hampshire, he could spend more time with his family and not have to release those pesky records Minnesotans are demanding to find out how much time he is actually spending in Minnesota’s 8th District. The only challenge for Cravaack here in New Hampshire might be convincing his New Hampshire constituents that, despite his record in Minnesota, he sides with working families, not corporate special interests."
Windham Republican Town Committee Chairman Travis Blais fired right back at Rice Hawkins, calling it "cheap and crude" to score a political zing out of Cravaack's situation jumping between Minnesota, Washington, D.C. and New Hampshire.
"(It's) obviously a difficult situation to juggle," Blais said. "Making a story of it just encourages gutter politics."
Democratic Town Committee Chairwoman Kristi St. Laurent said that she had no idea Cravaack's family was in Windham nor did she know he was spending time in the town.
She said that she wouldn't want Cravaack to try to switch up and represent New Hampshire right away, saying it would be a big leap.
"If he wanted to come here and get the lay of the land and then maybe in the next term run, well good luck and welcome to New Hampshire," St. Laurent said.
Conservative activist and Windham resident Corey Lewandowski also said that he had no idea the freshman congressman was associated with the town.
Lewandowski said that it all comes down to whether Cravaack is making his votes in Washington, and it's up to him where he wants to spend his free time.
"If the federal government says he is a resident and has a residence in the state of Minnesota, and he wants to spend all of his free time stimulating the New Hampshire economy, I have no problem with that," Lewandowski said.
Both Lewandowski and St. Laurent said that they had never seen Cravaack at any Windham events. Blais was previously aware that the politician had moved his family to the town.