September 8, 2015

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Latest News, North Carolina

NH-GOV: DGA Statement on Sununu Gubernatorial Campaign Announcement

NH-GOV: DGA Statement on Sununu Gubernatorial Campaign Announcement

 

The Democratic Governors Association released the following statement Tuesday regarding three-term executive councilor Chris Sununu’s announcement that he is a candidate for governor:

 

“Chris Sununu revealed his true colors last month: He is a pandering, partisan politician who will say anything to get elected,” said DGA Executive Director Elisabeth Pearson. “One month ago, Sununu cozied up to Tea Party and turned his back on women’s health care, voting against funding to provide access to birth control and cancer screenings for thousands of New Hampshire women.”

 

“Chris Sununu’s priorities are clear: He’ll put his own political needs over the interests of New Hampshire every day of the week. That’s why he voted against commuter rail, clean energy investment, women’s health care and Medicaid expansion. New Hampshire residents just can’t trust career politician Chris Sununu.”

 

BACKGROUND:

 

Planned Parenthood

  • In August 2015, Sununu Voted Against Planned Parenthood Funding. According to WMUR, “Republican councilor Chris Sununu was at the center of attention Wednesday. He has previously voted to support Planned Parenthood contracts. In 2011, when the council rejected a contract with Planned Parenthood, he was one of two Republicans to buck his party and vote in favor of the contract. Sununu is now widely known to be considering a run for governor in 2016. He said he received more than 1,000 messages from constituents and they overwhelmingly urged him to reject the contract.” [WMUR, 8/5/15]
  • Sununu Tried to Argue “Things Are Different Now.” According to WMUR, “Sununu said multiple times that he is pro-choice and thinks the state should look for other providers to contract with for family planning services. ‘Things are different now,’ he said. ‘We have to take a step back and just take a pause and say ‘Is this a company and a business that we should be actively engaging (with)?’’” [WMUR, 8/5/15]
  • In a July 2011 Op-Ed, Sununu Touted his Support for Planned Parenthood Funding; Argued “I Chose to Do What I Believe was Appropriate and Responsible, Which Means Supporting the Funding of Vital Services to My District.” In a July 2011 op-ed, Sununu hyped his support for the state contract with Planned Parenthood. “I gave a lot of careful thought before deciding to put those concerns aside and do the right thing in voting for the funding of the Planned Parenthood contract. I could have done the ‘politically easy’ thing by listening to the rhetoric and voting against it. Instead, I chose to do what I believe was appropriate and responsible, which means supporting the funding of vital services to my district.” [Union Leader Sununu op-ed, 7/23/11]

 

Medicaid Expansion

  • In October 2013 Sununu was the Only Councilor to Vote Against Endorsing Gov. Hassan’s Call for a Special Session to Consider the Recommendations of a Commission That Endorsed Medicaid Expansion. According to the Nashua Telegraph, “Lawmakers will be brought back next month to consider whether to increase how many people are eligible for Medicaid, the federal-state health insurance program for the poor, disabled and ill senior citizens. The Executive Council voted 4-1 Wednesday to endorse Gov. Maggie Hassan’s call for a special session from Nov. 7-21 to consider the recommendations of a commission that endorsed Medicaid expansion earlier this week. Councilor Chris Sununu, R-Newfields, was the lone vote in opposition. […] The state Constitution provides two methods for calling special sessions: one if the governor and Executive Council ask for one, and the other if a minimum number of incumbent legislators sign a petition requesting it. The council-approved request would limit the agenda for the two-week meeting to expanding Medicaid, as provided under the Affordable Care Act.” [Nashua Telegraph, 10/17/13]
  • In July 2014 Sununu Voted Against a Contract with Two Managed-Care Companies to Allow Medicaid Expansion to Begin. According to the Union Leader, “On a 3-2 vote down party lines, the Executive Council approved a $292 million contract that allows the N.H. Health Protection Program, or Medicaid expansion, to begin Sept. 1. The contract with the two managed-care companies — N.H. Healthy Families and Well Sense — that administer the state’s Medicaid managed care program, sets the rates the state pays to the administrators and the rates the managed care companies pay medical providers for the 50,000 or more low-income adults who qualify for government-paid health insurance under the Affordable Care Act. The contract was not on the Executive Council’s agenda but was added as a late item, and that upset District 3 Executive Councilor Chris Sununu, R-Newfields, who said he saw the contract for the first time two hours before the meeting.” [Union Leader, 7/16/14]

 

Renewable Energy

  • In October 2014 Sununu was the Only Councilor to Oppose $4.1 Million in Financing for a Five-Turbine Wind Farm Project in Berlin. According to the Union Leader, “After an hour-long public hearing, the Executive Council voted 4-1 to approve $4.1 million in financing for Jericho Power LLC, a five-turbine wind farm project in Berlin. […] The only councilor to vote against the bonding was District 3 Executive Councilor Chris Sununu, R-Newfields, who said the project would be the most expensive per-megawatt wind farm in the New England. ‘There is an awful lot of taxpayer money involved in this,’ he said of the project on Jericho Mountain, which is expected to produce a maximum of 14 megawatts of power. ‘It makes no financial sense whatsoever.’ The council voted 4-1 about a year ago to approve a $1 million grant for the plan, which has the backing of Berlin’s elected officials.” [New Hampshire Union Leader, 10/29/14]
  • In January 2014 Sununu was the Only Councilor to Oppose a $1.2 Million Grant from the State’s Renewable Energy Fund for a Solar Project in Peterborough. According to the Union Leader, “The Executive Council on Tuesday approved a $1.2 million grant from the state’s renewable energy fund for a solar project in Peterborough, but not without protest from Councilor Chris Sununu, R-Newfields, whose tough questioning  of project proponents prompted a mild rebuke from the governor. […] The proposal was approved on a 3-1 vote, with Pignatelli, Councilor Chris Pappas, D-Nashua, and Councilor Colin Van Ostern, D-Concord, in favor.” [New  Hampshire Union Leader, 1/16/14]

 

 

Commuter Rail

  • In June 2013 Sununu was the Only Councilor to Vote Against a Public Education Campaign on the Benefits of the Capital Corridor Project; Accused the State Department of Transportation of Advocating  for the Controversial Commuter Rail Proposal. According to the Union Leader, “Executive Councilor Chris Sununu, R-Newfields, accused the state Department of Transportation of advocating for a controversial commuter rail proposal through a request for $40,000 to launch a public education campaign on the benefits of the Capital Corridor project. The council approved the funding for the education effort in a 4-1 vote, but not after some heated debate. ‘It’s silly that we’re going to tell people how wonderful the Capital Corridor is when we don’t know if it’s a good idea or not. That’s why we’re doing a study,’ said Sununu in questioning DOT Commissioner Christopher Clement at the Executive Council session Wednesday. ‘It’s putting the cart before the horse.’ Clement said the transportation department was not trying to influence the public on the plan to extend the existing commuter rail system across the Massachusetts border into Nashua, through Manchester and on to Concord. ‘With all due respect, Chris, that’s exactly what you’re doing,’ Sununu replied. ‘You’re advocating for the benefit of the Capital Corridor project.’” [New Hampshire Union Leader, 6/6/13]
  • In February 2013 Sununu was the Only Councilor to Vote Against a Federally Financed Study Into Extending Commuter Rail Service From Boston Through Nashua and Onto Concord. According to the Nashua Telegraph, “A five-year campaign to conduct a federally financed study into extending commuter rail service from Boston through Nashua and onto Concord hit political pay dirt Wednesday. The Executive Council’s 4-1 vote of approval was the last step needed for a $3.7 million contract with URS Corp. of Salem and San Francisco, which will explore the costs and benefits of rail and report back to state officials by the end of December 2014. Only a year earlier, the all-Republican council turned down this contract on a 3-2 vote. […] Councilor Chris Sununu, R-Newfields, was the lone opponent and said the fiscal reality is the state cannot afford the multimillion-dollar-a-year subsidy that taxpayers would have to pay to keep the trains running. ‘Nobody knows where this money would come from,’ Sununu said. ‘Even in good times, this doesn’t make sense.’” [Nashua Telegraph, 2/7/13]

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