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On Earth Day, A Reminder of U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte’s Big Oil and Dirty Energy Support

 Oil and Gas Contributions to Ayotte Put Her in Top 10 of All U.S. Senators 

Concord, NH – According to Open Secrets, U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte is one of the top ten recipients of oil and gas contributions in the U.S. Senate this cycle. Ayotte has received $142,025 in funds from oil and gas thus far. Donations include those from Koch PAC, the largest oil and gas campaign contributor in the nation — even surpassing ExxonMobil — as well as ExxonMobil itself and Chevron.

The Koch network in particular is investing heavily in Kelly Ayotte: Koch Industries is listed as Ayotte’s 12th largest contributor over her political career. In the last six months alone, Ayotte has received $10,800 from billionaire conservative and oil refining magnate David Koch and his wife Julia, in addition to the Koch’s hosting a $10,000 a plate fundraiser for her in Manhattan. Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity has already spent more than $1 million attacking Ayotte’s campaign opponent, Governor Maggie Hassan.

At the same time, Ayotte finished the 113th legislative session with a 100% score from Americans for Prosperity on selected “Energy and the Environment” bills, and has an 83% lifetime score from the Koch-funded group. In 2012, Kelly Ayotte voted against repealing $24 billion in tax breaks for the five largest oil companies operating in the United States; the same bill Ayotte opposed would have instead promoted renewable energy and alternative fuels. 

“Kelly Ayotte and her dirty energy friends want to keep our country dependent on fossil fuels instead of growing a clean energy economy that increases jobs and protects our environment,” said Zandra Rice Hawkins, executive director of Granite State Progress. “On Earth Day, and every day, our elected officials should look for opportunities to provide stewardship and vision to protect our natural resources, rather than cozying up to polluters. There is no doubt that dirty energy contributes significantly to climate change. Politicians should address that problem head-on instead of looking to Big Oil for handouts.”


Koch Donations: Open Secrets, U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte, Donors – Career, Accessed 4.21.16 Donations include Koch Industries’ PACs, individual members or employees or owners, and those individuals’ immediate families.; FEC, Friends of Kelly Ayotte, Filing thru 3.31.16; The CT Mirror, Koch brother hosting fundraiser for Blumenthal rival, 10.19.15; WMUR, Updated New Hampshire Primary Source: Record first-in-nation primary turnout confirmed; 542,459 votes cast, 2.20.16; Americans for Prosperity, Scorecard: Sen. Kelly Ayotte, 113th (2013-2014) Score on Energy and Environment (100%), Accessed 4.21.16; Americans for Prosperity, Scorecard: Sen. Kelly Ayotte, Lifetime Score on Energy and Environment (83%), Accessed 4.21.16; Senate Vote 63, 3.29.12

Local Businesses to Offer Women a Discount on Equal Pay Day to Highlight the Wage Gap

 Businesses in Portsmouth, Durham, Concord, and Keene will charge women 79% of their bill to highlight the wage gap that finds women earning only 79 cents to a man’s dollar

equalpayCONCORD, NH – In collaboration with the Stand With Women campaign of NH Citizens Alliance and Granite State Progress Education Fund, local businesses across New Hampshire will mark this year’s Equal Pay Day on Tuesday, April 12th by providing a discount to women equivalent to the percentage in wage gap. Businesses in Portsmouth, Durham, Concord, and Keene will stand in solidarity with women by charging them only 79% of their bill to highlight the wage gap that finds women earning 79 cents to a man’s dollar.

Equal Pay Day is the date each year that symbolizes how far into the year women must work to earn what men earned in the previous year. According to the latest data, female full time workers are paid 79 cents for every dollar paid to a male worker. Pay disparity is worse for women of color: black female full time workers make 60 cents to a white male workers dollar, and Latino and Hispanic women make the lowest at 55 cents. These numbers reflect the difference in men’s and women’s typical earnings, using the median earnings of women and men full-time, year-round workers, and are impacted by the many discriminatory barriers to equal pay—including lower pay for women in the same job; the segregation of women into lower-paying jobs and exclusion of women from higher-paying, nontraditional jobs; bias against women with caregiving responsibilities; and lack of workplace policies to allow workers to care for families without paying a stiff economic penalty.

Five of the participating businesses will offer the discount all day long, on all menu items, and host media availabilities featuring the business owner and/or manager, along with local elected officials and advocates. Please note the following locations and times:

Portsmouth: The Works Bakery Cafe, 9 Congress St. Hours: 6am-5pm

RSVP on Facebook or to sheila@granitestateprogress.org

Durham: The Works Bakery Cafe, 5a Mill Road Plaza. Hours 6am-6pm

RSVP on Facebook or to sheila@granitestateprogress.org

Keene: The Works Bakery Cafe, 120 Main St. Hours 6am-6pm

RSVP on Facebook or to sheila@granitestateprogress.org 

Concord: VIBES Gourmet Burgers, 25 South Main Street. Hours 11:30am-8pm

*** Extra: Join us for a Stand With Women “Unhappy Hour” from 5:30-7:30 ***

RSVP on Facebook or to sheila@granitestateprogress.org 

Concord: The Works Bakery Cafe, 42 North Main St. Hours 6am-5pm

RSVP on Facebook or to sheila@granitestateprogress.org 

Concord: Gondwana & Divine Clothing Co., 13 North Main Street. Hours 10am – 6pm

*** Gondwana has been doing Equal Pay Day discounts for more than 20 years! ***

NH Senate Failure to Pass SB 507 and Strengthen Integrity, Innovation for Voting in New Hampshire

Legislation sought to bring New Hampshire voting, democracy into the 21st century

CONCORD, NH – The New Hampshire Senate voted today against SB 507-FN, authorizing online voter registration, by a vote of 13-11. Statements from voting rights advocates:

“New Hampshire is missing out on an opportunity to bring elections into the 21st century and expand access to voter registration. Thirty-one states and the District of Columbia have, with bipartisan support, implemented this approach to election modernization, and have seen savings in time, money and other resources,” said Brittnie Baker, Staff Counsel at Fair Elections Legal Network. “We need to continue to fight for common sense elections reforms that would help New Hampshire residents participate in elections.”

“New Hampshire’s voter registration system should be modernized and brought online to give every eligible voter an opportunity to participate in our democracy. Citizens can file taxes, apply for jobs, receive financial aid and register vehicles online,” said Paula Hodges, State Director of America Votes-NH. “Allowing for voter registration online ensures our democracy is keeping up with the technological world we live in.”

“Enabling fellow Granite Staters to securely exercise their right to vote should not be a partisan matter,” stated Devon Chaffee, Executive Director of the American Civil Liberties Union of New Hampshire. “Online voter registration has been adopted in blue and red states throughout the country, precisely because it lessens the burden on local election officials and improves the integrity of the election system as a whole.”

“As the “First in the Nation” Primary state with one of the highest voter participation rates in the country, we believe New Hampshire can become a model for the nation in administering inclusive, transparent, and high integrity elections,” said Zandra Rice Hawkins, Executive Director of Granite State Progress & Education Fund. “Updating our voting systems to ensure that all voters have equal access, regardless of income, race, gender, disability, or age strengthens our democracy.”

SB 507-FN had previously passed the Senate on a voice vote, but was re-referred to the Finance committee. Voting rights advocates questioned the steep fiscal note that was attached to the bill, which was more than it cost the State of California to overhaul its entire voting system.

“The League of Women Voters NH is very disappointed with the Senate’s decision to kill the opportunity for New Hampshire to move to online voter registration. This was a good piece of legislation that was undermined by a fiscal note that was not credible. It’s not possible for online voter registration in New Hampshire to cost more than it costs for the entire state of California when most states have found the costs to be modest or nonexistent,” said Liz Tentarelli, President of LWVNH. “More than 30 states now have online voter registration, and election officials across the country have praised the benefits of a modernized voting system. Online voter registration increases voter roll accuracy and security, it reduces workload and costs for municipalities, and it encourages citizens to register and vote.”

The New Hampshire Campaign for Voting Rights is a three pronged plan to strengthen integrity and build transparency into the voting process and improve access to the ballot box. The coalition includes America Votes-New Hampshire, Open Democracy, New Hampshire Civil Liberties Union, League of Women Voters-New Hampshire, NextGen New Hampshire, New Hampshire Citizens Alliance, People for the American Way, Granite State Progress & Education Fund, and Fair Elections Legal Network.

Urgent Call to Action for New Hampshire Legislators on International Women’s Day

On International Women’s Day we celebrate the accomplishments of the women’s rights movement and call on our local legislators to continue to take action on gender parity

CONCORD, NH –International Women’s Day is celebrated worldwide today, March 8, 2016. Statements from Granite State Progress Education Fund and NH Citizens Alliance are below. 

Statement from Granite State Progress Education Fund Executive Director Zandra Rice Hawkins:

Granite State Progress“On International Women’s Day we applaud the accomplishments of Governor Maggie Hassan, U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen, and Congresswoman Annie Kuster who have continuously championed women’s rights and equality. We also applaud the dedicated leaders within the New Hampshire House and Senate who are working toward creating a better and more inclusive future for women and girls in the Granite State. We specifically want to highlight the legislators who have stood up to support and sponsor bills such as SB 488, which prevents discrimination against pregnant women and their families in the workplace, and HB 1346, which eliminates the sub-minimum tipped wage that disproportionately impacts the economic security of women and people of color. Bills like these will help end discrimination against women, and pave the way for equal participation in all aspects of professional and personal lives.”

Statement from NH Citizens Alliance Executive Director Kary Jencks:

NH Citizens Alliance“This week the House will convene to vote on some of the most oppressive reproductive rights bills against women our state has seen since the Bill O’Brien legislature. Bills such as HB 1328, HB 1623, HB 1625, and HB 1636, which all seek to limit or ban abortion, and HB 1684, which would remove funding from any health facility that offers abortion services, jeopardize a woman’s right to self-determination and economic security. We urge these legislators to take today to really think about their constituents and to reflect on whether they plan to Stand with Women or Stand in the Way during the House session.”

NH Senate Commerce Committee Passes SB 488, Pregnant Workers Fairness Act

Bipartisan vote calls for an end to workplace
discrimination against pregnant women

Pregnant Woman (Image John Ted Daganato Flickr)CONCORD, NH – The New Hampshire Senate Commerce Committee voted today to pass SB 488, the New Hampshire Pregnant Workers Fairness Act. The bipartisan bill is a companion bill to the federal Pregnant Workers Fairness Act sponsored by both of New Hampshire’s US Senators, Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D) and Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R). 

SB 488 would guarantee the rights of pregnant women in the workplace. It calls on employers to offer reasonable accommodations for pregnant workers, including more frequent or longer breaks, temporary transfer to a less strenuous or hazardous position, job restructuring, and other temporary modifications.

“Despite existing protections, pregnant workers in the United States still face discrimination,” said Kary Jencks, executive director of NH Citizens Alliance. “Pregnant workers are too often forced out of their jobs and denied reasonable accommodations that would enable them to continue working and supporting their families. Pregnancy discrimination complaints are actually on the rise nationally, and the nearly 70% of New Hampshire women who work throughout their pregnancy deserve workplace protections that guard against discrimination.”

“No woman should have to choose between her job and a healthy pregnancy,” said Zandra Rice Hawkins, executive director of Granite State Progress & Education Fund. “We applaud the Senate Commerce committee for standing with women and their families to ensure they have the workplace protections they need to remain in the workforce. The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act seeks to end discrimination and promote healthy pregnancies and the economic security of pregnant women and their families.”

SB 488 passed Senate Commerce Committee with only minor changes, including removing the section stating that “the employer shall have the burden of proving undue hardship.” The bill is expected to be voted on by the full Senate next week. If it becomes law, New Hampshire will join fifteen states, the District of Columbia and four cities that have already passed laws requiring some employers to provide reasonable accommodations to pregnant workers.

The prime sponsor is Sen. Martha Fuller Clark (D-Portsmouth). Co-sponsors include Senator Molly Kelly, Dist 10; Senator Bette Lasky, Dist 13; Senator David Boutin, Dist 16; Rep. Tom Sherman, Rock. 24; Rep. Cindy Rosenwald, Hills. 30; Rep. Becky McBeath, Rock. 26; and Rep. P. Gordon, Rock. 29.

The Stand With Women or Stand in the Way campaign of NH Citizens Alliance and Granite State Progress Education Fund believes that instead of protecting outdated workplace policies that discriminate against women and limiting reproductive rights, our priority in New Hampshire should be to guarantee fair opportunities for women to succeed and to take care of their families.

NH House Kills Planned Parenthood Investigation And Defunding Bill

Planned_Parenthood_logo.svgBipartisan majority rejects HJR 3, which called for an investigation into Planned Parenthood and defunding for all health centers providing abortion services

87 Republican Representatives join Democratic Colleagues in Rejecting Attacks on Reproductive Health Provider

Today, a bipartisan majority in the New Hampshire House rejected HJR 3, a bill that called for a state investigation into a variety of inflammatory and disputed allegations directed at Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers.  The bill also would have blocked funding for women to get basic preventive services at Planned Parenthood health centers across the state — including affordable birth control, cancer screenings, HIV testing and other essential care. The measure was soundly defeated on a vote of 227 – 100.

“Planned Parenthood has been a trusted source of high-quality, compassionate and affordable health care in New Hampshire for 50 years — and that’s not going to change, no matter what our opponents throw at us,” said Jennifer Frizzell, vice president of the Planned Parenthood New Hampshire Action Fund.

“Today we saw our elected leaders from both parties stand up for New Hampshire women and families and reject the false and fraudulent attacks that are coming from a group of extreme legislators. That’s because despite what some politicians and pundits might say — access to reproductive health care is not a partisan issue in the Granite State,” continued Frizzell.  

“New Hampshire is a solidly pro-choice state and we applaud the House for standing up for their constituents to reject HJR 3. HJR 3 relied on the edited videos and claims of extreme, ideologically driven organizations that seek to interfere in a woman’s access to the full range of reproductive health options. We continue to stand with our allies at Planned Parenthood and other community health centers as they face a barrage of attacks from extreme politicians and organizations. Instead of protecting outdated workplace policies that discriminate against women and limiting reproductive rights, our priority in New Hampshire should be to guarantee fair opportunities for women to succeed and to take care of their families, and this vote is a step in the right direction,” said Kary Jencks, executive director of NH Citizens Alliance.

“Having children has huge personal, health, and economic impacts on women and their families, so guaranteed access to reproductive health care, including birth control, abortion, pre-natal and maternity care, is tied inextricably to a woman’s economic security,” said Zandra Rice Hawkins, executive director of Granite State Progress & Education Fund. “We thank Planned Parenthood and other community health centers for their dedication to ensuring women and their families, particularly those in medically underserved areas, have access to quality health care. Today’s vote against a nationally orchestrated smear campaign was the right one.”

Today’s vote comes just days after a 3-month investigation wrapped up in Texas, where the grand jury cleared Planned Parenthood of breaking any law. Of note, that same grand jury did hand down indictments for two individuals who were involved in making the allegations against Planned Parenthood public via covert recordings and illegal tactics. These findings and the similar exoneration of Planned Parenthood affiliates in more than 10 other state investigations in recent months has led to a national call for the GOP to give up its crusade against Planned Parenthood and the reproductive health care services it provides.

“The citizens of our state want their elected officials to keep us moving forward – not backward – on women’s health. Today’s vote demonstrates that legislators from both parties reject these coordinated attacks that seek to end access to safe, legal abortion, ” concluded Frizzell.

More than 14,000 women, men and young people rely on Planned Parenthood health centers in New Hampshire for high-quality, affordable health care. With 33 percent of Planned Parenthood health centers providing care in rural or medically underserved areas statewide, Planned Parenthood serves as an essential source of primary and preventive health care in New Hampshire.

On 43rd Anniversary Of Roe v. Wade, NH Health Providers Push Back On War On Women’s Health

Women Protesting Roe vs Wade

NH’s Women’s Health Providers and Advocates Push Back
Against Assault on Women’s Health in 2016
Sixteen Separate Bills Form Broad Agenda to Ban Abortion

Concord, NH — Women’s health providers, patients and advocates from across the state gathered in Concord this afternoon to sound an alarm about the unprecedented number of attacks on women’s health introduced in the 2016 legislative session. “As women’s health providers and advocates for reproductive health and freedom we are united to defeat this broad agenda to ban abortion and eliminate reproductive care,” stated Jennifer Frizzell of Planned Parenthood, on behalf of the group of allies.

This week marks the 43rd anniversary of the landmark Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision. Extreme anti-women’s health lawmakers are using the occasion to kick off public hearings for a package of legislation that would make the constitutional protections of Roe meaningless for New Hampshire women and families.

“For more than forty years, the U.S. Supreme Court has affirmed that under Roe v. Wade, the constitution protects every woman’s right to make her own personal medical decisions about abortion. Yet some politicians in New Hampshire have made it clear with this year’s legislative agenda that they will stop at nothing to end access to safe, legal abortion,” said Devon Chafee Executive Director of the ACLU of NH.

This agenda is at odds with recent polls that show support for access to safe, legal abortion is higher in New Hampshire than any other state in the country and that more Republicans here consider themselves pro-choice than pro-life on issues like abortion and funding for Planned Parenthood.

Despite the views and values of their constituents, a handful of extreme Republicans continue their assault on women’s health care. They have introduced a legislative package consisting of 16 bills that aim at dismantling women’s preventive care and ending access to safe, legal abortion.

 “Planned Parenthood of Northern New England will not back down from these ruthless political attacks. The extremist legislators forcing this agenda are putting women’s lives and health in danger. The stakes for women’s health and rights are higher than ever this year.  These restrictions are part of a broader national agenda to end access to safe, legal abortion. And this is not what the people of New Hampshire want from their elected officials,” stated Jennifer Frizzell, VP for Public Policy at the Planned Parenthood New Hampshire Action Fund.  “At Planned Parenthood, we will stand up to this dangerous legislation on behalf of the women, men and young people whose health and well-being is at stake and we will not shut our doors,” continued Frizzell.

According to new data from Guttmacher, politicians across the country have enacted 288 restrictions on safe, legal abortion at the state level since the 2010 midterm elections–despite the public’s overwhelming support for women’s access to safe, legal abortion. In New Hampshire, a group of extreme politicians have introduced a devastating legislative package consisting of 16 bills that aim at dismantling women’s health.

New Hampshire has a strong tradition of respecting women and doctors, not politicians, to make personal, private decisions about pregnancy and childbearing. Additionally, the Granite State currently has some of the best public health outcomes in the country for women, including the lowest teen pregnancy rate, and the best perinatal and maternal health outcomes. The anti-women’s health legislation introduced in 2016 would jeopardize care for New Hampshire women and reduce access for New Hampshire communities.

“Having access to the tools necessary to support choices around childbearing reduces unintended pregnancies, helps women space their childbearing, and leads to healthier babies and women.  By taking those services away, New Hampshire legislators would be creating substantial risk that women will face the serious mental and physical health risks of being forced to carry unwanted pregnancies to term, or resort to unsafe abortions,” stated Katie Robert, President of the NH Public Health Association.

“On the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, providers like the Concord Feminist Health Center are speaking out against politicians who would take us backwards and make it impossible to get safe and legal abortion. We simply can’t let that happen in New Hampshire,” concluded Dalia Vidunas, Executive Director.

Polls consistently show that the majority of Americans support access to safe and legal abortion and Planned Parenthood health centers. Since July, there have been 14 national polls measuring support for Planned Parenthood–and every single one of them show strong support for Planned Parenthood and access to reproductive health care. A recent Bloomberg Politics national poll found that 67 percent of Americans surveyed said the Supreme Court was right to rule that women have a constitutional right to abortion and agree with the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade. A VOX/PerryUndem poll found that more Americans now consider themselves pro-choice than pro-life. Sixty-eight percent of Millennials don’t want to see Roe overturned, and 72 percent of Republicans think abortion should be available.

The landmark Roe v Wade decision issued on January 22, 1973.

(Featured image is from today in history)

Local Community Groups Host Women’s Economic Roundtable January 12th

African American waitress serving lunch --- Image by © Matt Hess/Golden Pixels LLC/Corbis

African American waitress serving lunch — Image by © Matt Hess/Golden Pixels LLC/Corbis

ROC (Restaurant Opportunities Centers) United, along with Granite State Progress Education Fund, New Hampshire Citizens Alliance and other national and local allies, invite you to join us for a roundtable discussion on economic security for women and their families. This discussion will particularly focus on key issues that women in the restaurant industry face, including: low wages, lack of paid family leave and earned sick time policies, and virtually no access to affordable childcare. 

Tuesday, January 12th
10:00 am to 2:00 pm
to be held at|
Puritan Conference Center, 245 Hooksett Road, Manchester 

Background: The restaurant industry is the fastest growing industry in the nation. Nearly 70% of tipped restaurant workers are women. Not only does the industry reflect the same antiquated and limited workplace policies we see across low-wage industries, but the restaurant industry presents particularly egregious challenges when it comes to earning a living wage because of the tiered wage system that denies tipped workers the same right to minimum wage that other workers receive. Because these workers are paid only $2-3/hour, tipped workers are often forced to live off tips from their customers rather than wages from the employer. In this industry, like elsewhere in the service sector, the customer is always right. Therefore, without one fair wage for all workers, many tipped employees must endure disrespect and mistreatment from customers in order just to make a living.

The roundtable discussion will follow short presentations from Presidential candidate surrogates on what they plan to do to address fair wages, antiquated leave policies and affordable childcare in order to advance gender equity.  Following the candidate presentations and the moderated roundtable discussion attendees will participate in a lunch discussion. 

Speakers for the event include Saru Jayaraman, Co-Founder and Co-Director of ROC United; Ellen Bravo, Executive Director of Family Values at Work; State Representative Jackie Cilley, sponsor of the One Fair Wage bill in New Hampshire; State Representative and childcare provider Mary Jane Wallner; Nina Mujakovic, owner of Old Europe in Concord; and Executive Councilman and small business owner Chris Pappas.

Please RSVP to Sheila Vargas at sheila@granitestateprogress.org or (603) 848-3229.

New Hampshire Issue Advocacy Groups Join Forces, Rally Ahead of Democratic Presidential Debate

Rally and Downtown March Called on Democratic Candidates to Articulate Vision for a Clean Energy Future, Invest in Economic Security for Families and Small Businesses, and Put Voters Ahead of Special Interests

2015-12-19 march 1MANCHESTER, NH – Today, more than 20 issue advocacy groups gathered in Manchester to share a collective vision for a better future in advance of the New Hampshire Democratic Primary Debate.  The march and rally, titled “The Future We Want,” made its way down Elm Street in a show of unity. The march began at the Radisson Hotel, where leaders from across the region discussed how the activist community is coming together to demand action on the issues that matter to New Hampshire and the nation.

“There are so many great organizations doing important work in the state,” said Mike Padmore, State Director for NextGen Climate New Hampshire. “Every group here is working together for justice and progress, by protecting our planet, restoring democracy through campaign finance reform, supporting reproductive rights, investing in economic security for working families and defending the refugees seeking safety and a better life.”

Close to 200 people attended the event. Participants discussed how their work supports a unified vision to move our state and country forward and the importance of working together to ensure a fairer and more just future for all Americans. New Hampshire has a long tradition of using its First-in-the-Nation Primary status to vet candidates on the issues that matter most to Americans and for months Granite State “bird dogs” – issue advocates that follow the candidates and pin them down on the tough questions – have worked the Democratic Primary field. Rally speakers pointed to tonight’s Democratic Primary Debate, happening just two miles away at St. Anselm College’s New Hampshire Institute of Politics, calling it an opportunity for candidates to be champions of justice and progress.

“In New Hampshire, we have a unique opportunity to be in the spotlight of the national conversation in the months leading up to the First in the Nation primary” said Will Hopkins, Executive Director of New Hampshire Peace Action. “With that opportunity comes an important responsibility to engage with the candidates and articulate a vision for the future that demands strong leadership on the issues that matter to Granite Staters.”

The participating organizations from today’s rally and march will continue to work together to articulate and demonstrate a fair, just, and progressive vision for America during the Presidential Primary.

2015-12-19 march 2


NextGen Climate NH is a non-profit, non-partisan dedicated to averting climate disaster and promoting prosperity for all Americans. NextGen is calling on our elected leaders to get America to 50% renewable energy by 2030.

350 Action is pushing presidential candidates during the New Hampshire Primary to keep fossil fuels in the ground. It empowers New Hampshire residents to use creative direct action and bird dogging to influence our leaders.

Granite State Progress is a progressive advocacy organization that addresses issues of immediate state and local concern. Granite State Progress works as a communications hub for the progressive community to provide a strong, credible voice in advancing progressive solutions to critical community problems.

People For the American Way is dedicated to making the promise of America real for every American: Equality. Freedom of speech. Freedom of religion. The right to seek justice in a court of law. The right to cast a vote that counts. The American Way. Our operational mission is to promote the American Way and defend it from attack, to build and nurture communities of support for our values, and to equip those communities to promote progressive policies, elect progressive candidates, and hold public officials accountable.

Moms Clean Air Force is a community of parents working together to combat air pollution, including the urgent crisis of our changing climate – to protect our children’s health.

The American Friends Service Committee’s “Governing Under the Influence” project is a non-partisan, educational effort to raise awareness about the excessive power held by the ultra-wealthy and major corporations, especially those that profit from militarism and incarceration.  To date the project has trained more than 1000 NH people to be effective “bird dogs,” brought its giant GUI banners to dozens of political events, sponsored educational programs with hundreds of participants, and engaged all major presidential candidates in substantive discussions about nuclear weapons spending, the immigrant detention mandate, the influence of the military industrial complex, and other issues.

The cross-partisan NH Rebellion has mobilized thousands of citizen rebels to #FightBigMoney in politics by walking the talk for democracy all across the Granite State – 30,000 miles and counting. #NHRebellion educates candidates and voters on how our democracy could be fixed through its We the People pledge,  including overturning Citizens United, ending the Legislator to Lobbyist revolving door, requiring donation transparency, and other reforms. #NHRebellion is part of Open Democracy, the nonpartisan organization founded by legendary reformer Doris “Granny D” Haddock.

The New Hampshire AFL-CIO is a strong statewide voice for all working people, bringing together the unions of New Hampshire under one banner to fight for economic and social justice in our workplaces and communities.

Rights and Democracy is bringing people together to take action to build healthy communities and make the values of our communities guide the policies of our government. Together, we create change through grassroots organizing, educating and mobilizing around the issues that affect our communities, recruiting and training candidates to run for office, and working through the political and electoral process to advance progressive policies that lead to happy, healthy, and just communities for everyone.

New Hampshire Sierra Club represents over 15,000 Members and Supporters who care about the environment and the future of the Granite State. NHSC supports pollution-free clean energy future that can benefit the local economy and create jobs, like energy efficiency, wind and solar energy. Our goal is to have a zero carbon polluting economy by the year 2050.

The members of New Hampshire Peace Action are dedicated to making a contribution to world peace. We envision a world in which nuclear disarmament, mutual security, global understanding, international cooperation and respect for human rights create social, economic, and environmental benefits for all humanity.

Planned Parenthood New Hampshire Action Fund is an independent, nonpartisan, not-for-profit membership organization formed as the advocacy and political arm of Planned Parenthood of Northern New England in New Hampshire. The Action Fund engages in educational and electoral activity, including legislative education, grassroots organizing, and legislative advocacy. Follow us on Twitter.

After nearly 40 years NH Citizens Alliance continues to lead the movement for social and economic justice in the Granite State. We focus on creating a more engaged electorate through issue education, leadership development and voter engagement and mobilization. Central to our work is a women’s economic justice framework. We must take action now to ensure that women have equal rights and receive fair treatment on the job, in health care and in the new economy.

Better Future Project works to build powerful grassroots movements to address the climate crisis and advance a rapid and responsible transition beyond fossil fuels in Massachusetts and beyond.

350 Massachusetts for a Better Future is building a powerful statewide social movement to confront the climate crisis, hold our politicians accountable and undermine the destructive influence of the fossil fuel industry.

 The UNH Peace and Justice League is a social justice advocacy group.  We have worked on issues ranging from the student debt crisis at UNH to the nationwide issue of money in politics.

Divest UNH is pressuring the University of New Hampshire to divest their endowment from fossil fuels.  No one, especially universities, should be profiting of the devastating effects of climate change.  Our goal is not just to push the University of New Hampshire to divest but to create a long lasting student movement to fight for climate justice.

At the Organic Garden Club we manage an organic farm on campus.  Our goal is to provide a place for students to learn how to garden and to educate our community on where their food comes from.

The UNH Student Environmental Action Coalition is a collaborative of sustainability initiatives and committees seeking to promote a better environment and a stronger community

350NH is a climate movement of neighbors. We work as a community to turn off new fossil fuel infrastructure and turn on New Hampshire’s potential for a renewable energy future.

NH Campaign For Voting Rights Launches Three-Pronged Platform To Innovate Voting

NH Coalition(1) 

Concord, NH — New Hampshire advocacy groups and legislators announced a three pronged plan to strengthen integrity and build transparency into the voting process and improve access to the ballot box. The New Hampshire Campaign for Voting Rights currently includes America Votes-New Hampshire, Open Democracy, New Hampshire Civil Liberties Union, League of Women Voters-New Hampshire, NextGen New Hampshire, New Hampshire Citizens Alliance, People for the American Way, NAACP New England Area Conference, Granite State Progress and Fair Elections Legal Network.

The campaign’s platform includes three state legislative bills being introduced in the 2016 session:

  1. Implementing a statewide online voter registration system in 2017;
  2. Ensuring every voter has the same opportunity to vote on Election Day by standardizing polling hours from 6AM until 8PM;
  3. Creating an innovation grant system administered by the New Hampshire Secretary of State to support towns and cities to ensure they have the supplies, voting equipment for voters with physical impairments, absentee ballot envelopes and technical support to implement streamlined polling place and registration processes.

Former New Hampshire Charitable Foundation President and Open Democracy Advisory Board Member Lew Feldstein noted, “As the First-in-the-Nation primary state, New Hampshire has a strong reputation for voter participation. Nonetheless we have seen just one in five eligible voters consistently cast ballots in local elections, as documented in the Open Democracy Index. This campaign believes New Hampshire can become a model for the nation to administer inclusive, transparent and high integrity elections. We believe voting must be equally accessible to all citizens regardless of their income, race, gender, age or zip code. We support a voting system that is accessible and consistent for all.”

Plymouth State student and native New Hampshire voter Craig Cavanaugh explained, “I register for school, pay my taxes, cell phone bill and credit cards online. It just makes sense that the state would find a way to update the voter rolls year round so that when I graduate and update my mailing address, I can also go online and update my voter registration.”

Durham Town Council member and State Representative Wayne Burton (Strafford 6) suggested that, “the biggest barrier to working people, who are often taking care of aging parents and helping their children at the same time, is finding the time to vote before or after work.” He continued, “It all boils down to accessibility. If we want to prioritize civic engagement, we must equalize the playing field and support towns like Durham to keep their polling places open and work to reduce long lines with advance online registration. Your voting experience shouldn’t depend on your zip code or ward.”

State Senator David Pierce (District 5) closed the press conference by noting, “Cities and towns are the incubators of democracy. New Hampshire has a unique system where we elect volunteer Supervisors of the Checklist, Moderators and Town Clerks who have so many other responsibilities on their plates. The state legislature and Secretary of State must work together to bring New Hampshire online and ensure our elections processes are accessible to everyone – including people with physical impairments.”

Twenty-three states currently use online voter registration. Five more states will implement it this year, bringing that number to 28 by 2017 – the year when the proposed New Hampshire online voter registration bill would be implemented if passed this legislative session. Furthermore, 38 states have standardized polling hours for statewide elections. New Hampshire is also the only New England state that does not ensure that voting equipment is made available for those with physical impairments for every election, including municipal elections.

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