It's time we put people before party on the Executive Council
Seven months ago, I launched my campaign for Executive Council with a simple promise: People First. I promised to put public service before partisan ideology by focusing on the issues that matter most to Granite Staters: adding middle class jobs, turning back the heroin and opioid epidemic, protecting women’s health care, fighting big money in politics, and building an innovative and sustainable economy with clean energy, broadband, and commuter rail.
After holding dozens of forums, attending hundreds of events, meeting thousands of voters, and traveling thousands of miles through all 33 towns in District 5, I am as convinced as ever of the need for new leadership on the Executive Council. And I am ready to offer my all as your public servant.
Although I respect my opponent’s long tenure as an Executive Councilor, the choice in this election could not be more clear. On issue after issue of concern to our people, my opponent Dave Wheeler has disregarded his constituents, and even bipartisan majorities in the legislature, in favor of his own anti-government ideology. I am running with the support of leading Republicans and Democrats to chart a different course on the most important issues:
• Opioid Epidemic: As New Hampshire reels from a heroin and opioid epidemic that claimed some 432 lives last year, my opponent pledges to block the NH Health Protection Program that provides health insurance, and life-saving drug treatment, to 50,000 Granite Staters. Passed with bipartisan support in the state legislature, Mr. Wheeler’s vote to against the contract next year would threaten public health and leave a staggering $800 million of our federal tax dollars unclaimed. If elected, I will follow the bipartisan wishes of the state legislature and the business community by approving responsible Medicaid Expansion contracts.
• Women's Health: My opponent has repeatedly voted to restrict women's access to basic health care by blocking funding for Planned Parenthood and other community health centers. His stance flies in the face of both tradition and fact. For decades, Republicans and Democrats joined together to fund Planned Parenthood because family planning services actually reduce the number of abortions and teen pregnancies. Moreover, only 3% of Planned Parenthood’s services are abortion-related, and no public funds may be used on abortions. As your Executive Councilor, I will continue our longstanding policy of investing in women's health, and fight for gender equity so that my daughter and other young girls enjoy the same opportunities as my son.
• Renewable Energy: The health of our people is inextricably linked to the health of our economy and environment. Although my opponent has publicly opposed the Kinder Morgan pipeline, in 2014 he voiced support for the project, telling local business leaders he’ll find ways to make the project work. Mr. Wheeler has also rejected renewable energy projects that would save money and create good-paying green jobs, at no cost to taxpayers. If elected, I will strongly oppose unnecessary pipelines and work with businesses and local governments to invest in clean energy alternatives and conservation.
• Rail and Economic Growth: Commuter rail represents the biggest opportunity in a generation to grow our state economy, add 5,600 middle-class jobs, and stem the rapid out-migration of New Hampshire youth. Although three-quarters of our fellow citizens support the Capitol Corridor project, my opponent has been the deciding vote blocking commuter rail and preventing New Hampshire from reclaiming an estimated $165 million in federal tax dollars. If I am elected Councilor, I will stand up to such pennywise and pound-foolish practices by approving commuter rail, broadband, and other smart investments to move our state forward into the 21st century.
• Good Governance: Finally, I am running because I believe in the democratic process. From my student days at ConVal High School to my work as Executive Director of Open Democracy and the NH Rebellion, I have sought to "walk the talk” by working with all sides to bring greater transparency and stop the flood of special interest money in campaigns. As candidate, I have voluntarily disclosed my campaign finances long before the deadline, refused corporate support, and capped donations far below the legal limit. I am proud that we have received more citizen donations than any Executive Council campaign in New Hampshire history, and that nearly 80% of donations are in amounts of $100 or less.
As a husband, father, and 12th-generation Granite Stater, I am as eager today as I was at the start to work with all sides on behalf of District 5. In my years as a good-government watchdog and executive of successful nonprofits, I have learned how much we can accomplish when we put public service ahead of partisan ideology. I have met countless kind and decent people – Democrats, Republicans, and Independents – who share my vision, and my hunger to reset the politics in Concord.
I ask for your vote on November 8th.