Concord, N.H. – Earlier today Governor Chris Sununu was officially inaugurated as New Hampshire’s 82 Governor. In his inaugural address, Sununu laid out his very generic agenda and priorities for the coming legislative session.
Sununu talked about public education and creating a “work-ready” labor force. No mention of expanding Kindergarten to Full Day throughout the state. He also wants to woo more businesses to move to New Hampshire to create more jobs. Many of the manufactures have openly said they have jobs available but do not have qualified workers to fill those jobs, for the pay they are offering.
Though he did not specifically say he is going to repeal the Medicaid Expansion, though he has said that throughout the campaign, he said we need more competition in the healthcare market. If he plans to repeal Medicaid Expansion he will meet fierce opposition from his fellow Republicans and Democrats who understand that the program is actually saving the state money while ensuring 50,000 Granite Staters have access to healthcare.
Sununu has also been an outspoken advocate for passing the so-called Right to Work legislation despite never being proven to create jobs or help workers in any way.
“WE ARE GOING TO GIVE EMPLOYEES ONCE AND FOR ALL THE FLEXIBILITY THEY DESERVE IN THE WORKFORCE BY PASSING RIGHT TO WORK,” said Sununu (transcribed by WMUR). “LET’S TELL THESE COMPANIES NEWHAMPSHIRE IS OPEN FOR BUSINESS.”
In fact after Wisconsin passed their own Right to Work legislation, they lost over 10,000 jobs the next year.
Democrats offered their congratulations to the new Governor but also offed some sage advice about dismantling key programs within the state.
NHDP Chairman Ray Buckley released the following statement:
“The challenges New Hampshire families are facing need to be addressed over the next two years, from ensuring that 50,000 Granite Staters retain the healthcare they are receiving through our successful bipartisan Medicaid expansion to how we reduce the cost of college for middle class families.
“Unfortunately, Governor Sununu made it clear he wants to make it harder for NH employees to earn a fair wage by tilting the playing field in favor of big corporations, harder for our kids to get a great education by diverting money away from public schools toward private schools, and harder to advance renewable energy by slowing down investments in solar energy in favor of fossil fuels.
“I hope our newly-elected governor will focus on the issues that matter to New Hampshire families and not get distracted by partisan pet issues.”
Senate Democratic Leader Jeff Woodburn released the following statement:
“Later today, I am meeting with Governor Sununu to congratulate him on his inauguration and get to work making New Hampshire a better place by preserving the bipartisan progress we’ve made over the past several years, expanding opportunity for all people, and building a strong economy from the bottom up.”
“Senate Democrats are ready to work with the new governor, as we have with our Republican legislative colleagues, to craft compromises. But I’m concerned that, so far, Governor Sununu has focused on a divisive template of policies that make it harder for people to make ends meet and harder for people to get ahead.”
“To meet our constitutional oaths to ‘faithfully and impartially’ serve, I will urge the governor to hold regular, bi-weekly meetings with legislative leadership of both parties so that we can identify the seeds of agreement that can grow into fruits of our labor — things like renewing our successful NH Health Protection Program and bipartisan infrastructure investment plan—as well as priorities that strengthen families that Governor Sununu promised to support during the campaign– like full-day kindergarten, paid family leave, and reducing the cost of a college education.”
“Granite State working families deserve meaningful policies like these and I’m disappointed we didn’t hear more about these issues today.”
House Democratic Leader Steve Shurtleff released the following statement:
“I congratulate Governor Sununu for his success in the November election and his inauguration as Governor of our state.”
“I look forward to working with Governor Sununu and our Republican colleagues on bipartisan initiatives. The House Democratic Caucus stands ready to find common ground on any policies that benefit the working families of New Hampshire.”
“I was encouraged by the Governor’s statements during the campaign in which he expressed support for full-day kindergarten, paid family and medical leave and other initiatives that align with the priorities of Granite Staters. It was disappointing that those issues, on which the Governor campaigned, were not mentioned today in his Inaugural speech which provides a roadmap for the Governor’s policy agenda for the next two years.”
“Equally disappointing was that soon after speaking of not being divisive, Governor Sununu indicated a top priority would be the enactment of “Right to Work,” which is among the most politically divisive issues among both Democrats and Republicans the legislature.”
“It is my hope that when Governor Sununu provides more detail on the policies he wishes to advance, that those policies are aligned with Granite State families and the values of our great state.”