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Is Maggie Hassan Fundraising With A Koch Brothers Lobbyist?

This morning, this headline came across my desk: Hassan Raises Money with Koch Lobbyist

After seeing this, and reading the article, I was still not convinced that our Maggie would be taking money from a Koch brothers lobbyist.  So I decided to dig a little deeper.

The entire article is based on the fact that Maggie attended a fundraiser hosted in part by David A Castagnetti. The Free Beacon connected the fact that Castagnetti’s lobbying firm lobbied for Koch Industries from 2007-2013.  The also say that Castagnetti was named as the Koch Industries’ lobbyist, but offer no proof of the claim.

The fact is that lobbying firms like Mehlman, Vogel and Castagnetti, are major players in Washington and lobby for dozens of groups every year.  In 2011, Mehlman, Vogel and Castagnetti, lobbied for nearly sixty different corporations, including Koch Industries.  More recently Castagnetti’s firm has lobbied for Everytown For Gun Safety and Sandy Hook Promise.   

Another fact that the Free Beacon conveniently omitted is that Castagnetti has been Chief of Staff to Senator Max Baucus (D-Mont),  Rep. Norman Mineta (D-Calif.) and Rep. Ed Markey (D-Mass.).  Casagnetti describes himself as a “Democrat who understands how to talk to business.”

Castagnetti also has a long history of working with, and for, prominent democrats.  This includes fundraising.  Open Secrets notes that in this cycle Castagnetti has given $80,000 in campaign donations and $75,000 of that to democrats.

Let me just recap this a little more accurately than the Free Beacon.

Maggie Hassan attended a fundraiser, hosted by proven and prominent democrat, who also happens to one of top lobbyist in Washington D.C., and has lobbied on behalf of hundreds of different groups from Adobe to Yahoo.

If anything this highlights the convoluted nature of our political lobbying system and how it is intertwined with campaign fundraising.

Kelly Ayotte’s “Sweetheart Deal” For Wall Street Comes At The Expense Of NH’s College Students And Families

Conservative American Enterprise Institute Joins Growing
Chorus Criticizing Ayotte’s Giveaway to Wall Street

Concord – In Washington’s latest giveaway for Wall Street, Kelly Ayotte is pushing a “wolf in sheep’s clothing” student loan that would hurt New Hampshire’s college students and families. Even the conservative American Enterprise Institute think tank agrees Ayotte’s bill is really just a “sweetheart deal” for Wall Street lenders.  

Unfortunately, given Ayotte’s record of repeatedly voting to cut Pell Grants, voting against a measure to prevent federal student loan rates from doubling, and opposing a separate measure to make it easier to refinance student loans, it’s hardly surprising that experts say Ayotte’s bill would benefit Wall Street lenders at the expense of students and families.

As Congressman Eric Swalwell of California wrote in an op-ed, “If Senator Ayotte and her colleagues were serious about addressing the student debt crisis, they would be protecting the interests of the 40 million individuals with student loan debt, not the banks.” 

“Maggie Hassan has been a leader in working to make college more affordable and reduce the burden of student loan debt, fighting to freeze in-state tuition at the university system for the first time in 25 years and lowering tuition at New Hampshire’s community college,” said Campaign Communications Director Aaron Jacobs. “Meanwhile, Kelly Ayotte is once again putting her corporate special interests before New Hampshire, leading the charge on Washington’s latest giveaway for Wall Street lenders at the expense of New Hampshire’s students and families.”

In an explainer on the harmful effects of Ayotte’s bill, the Center for American Progress (CAP) also notes that her bill would also undermine important consumer benefits and protections for borrowers: “As bad as the legislation would be for taxpayers and borrowers in federal direct loan programs, it also has the potential to harm borrowers who take advantage of the refinancing option. In order to take advantage of refinancing under the proposed legislation, borrowers would have to give up important benefits that are assured under the federal student loan programs.” 

CAP added, “These would undoubtedly include the ability to repay a loan through an income-contingent repayment plan, as well as the right to have any outstanding balance on a student loan cancelled after 10 years of public service with a nonprofit organization or government agency or after 20 years or 25 years generally.”

EMILY’s List Puts New Hampshire Senator Kelly Ayotte “On Notice”

Kelly Ayotte

Image from Emily’s List http://republicansonnotice.tumblr.com/

WASHINGTON D.C. – EMILY’s List, the nation’s largest resource for women in politics, put New Hampshire Senator Kelly Ayotte “On Notice” for 2016. “On Notice” is a list of incumbent Republicans at all levels of government who will be held accountable for their anti-woman, anti-family records in the 2016 elections. 

“Senator Kelly Ayotte has proven time and again that her extreme Republican colleagues can depend on her to help them advance their anti-woman agenda and to stand with them in the way of policies that give working families a fair shot,” said Stephanie Schriock, president of EMILY’s List. “No matter how much Senator Ayotte tries to whitewash her record, there’s no escaping the fact that she opposes raising the minimum wage, refused to support paid leave for working families, voted against the Paycheck Fairness Act four times, cosponsored and voted for legislation to defund Planned Parenthood, and introduced legislation that would make affordable birth control less accessible even for women with health insurance. Senator Ayotte is a staunch supporter of policies that are downright dangerous for women and families in New Hampshire and across the country, and that’s why EMILY’s List is putting her ‘On Notice.’”

Sen. Ayotte’s Record:

Introduced GAP Act, Which Would Not Strengthen Equal Pay Laws and Weaken Protections for Employees. “And then, just for kitten-heel kicks, she and some of her fellow lady Republicans introduced their own adorable ‘Equal Pay’ bill, which wouldn’t actually strengthen equal pay laws so much as weaken them by creating extra loopholes for employers. It’s like the same thing, only different.” [Wonkette, 10/15/15] 

(1) Voted Against the Paycheck Fairness Act. In June 2012, Ayotte voted against a procedural vote to move forward with S. 3220, Paycheck Fairness Act, a bill that would amend the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (also known as the Equal Pay Act), “to revise remedies for, enforcement of, and exceptions to prohibitions against sex discrimination in the payment of wages.” The Paycheck Fairness Act would require a clarification in reasons for differences in wages paid to men and women doing the same work. The motion was rejected 52-47. [S. 3220, Vote #115, 6/05/12] 

(2) Again…Voted against the Paycheck Fairness Act. In April 2014, Ayotte voted against a motion to address the Paycheck Fairness Act. According to Congressional Quarterly the vote was a “Motion to invoke cloture (thus limiting debate) on the Reid, D-Nev., motion to proceed to the bill that would require employers to demonstrate that wage gaps between men and women with similar qualifications and in similar jobs have a business justification. It would prohibit employers from retaliating against employees who share salary information and authorize the Labor secretary to seek additional compensatory or punitive damages in a sex discrimination action. The bill also would require the Labor Department to provide training and collect wage information.” The motion was rejected by a vote of 53-44. [S 2199, Vote #103, 4/09/14]

(3) And again…Voted against the Paycheck Fairness Act. In September 2014, Ayotte voted against a bill to strengthen federal equal pay laws for women. [S. 2199, Vote #262, 9/15/14]                                                       

(4) And again. In March 2015, Ayotte voted against Senator Mikulski’s proposal to “establish a deficit-neutral reserve fund relating to amending the Equal Pay Act of 1963 to allow for punitive damages, limit the any factor ‘other than sex’ exception, and prohibit retaliation against employees who share salary information.” The amendment failed 45-54. [S. Con. Res. 11, Vote #82, 3/24/15] 

Voted for Blunt Amendment, Extreme Legislation Allowing Employers to Deny Health Care Coverage for Moral or Religious Reasons. In March 2012, Ayotte voted against tabling S. Amdt. 1520, also known as the Blunt amendment. The amendment would amend the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act to “protect the rights of conscious with regard to requirements for specific items and services.” In other words, employers would be able to deny health care coverage for moral or religious objections. The amendment was attached to S. 1813, MAP-21, a transportation reauthorization bill. The motion passed 51-48. [S. Amdt. 1520 to S. 1813, Vote #24, 3/01/12] 

Cosponsored and Voted for a Bill to Defund Planned Parenthood. In July 2015, Ayotte signed onto a bill to end federal funding to Planned Parenthood. In August 2015, she voted for the defunding measure. The motion to proceed did not pass 53-46. [S. 1881, Vote #262, 8/03/15; Cosponsored 7/29/15] 

Ayotte Argued That Roe v. Wade Should Be Overturned. According to the Nashua Telegraph, “Ayotte said the landmark Supreme Court decision Roe v. Wade that legalized abortion should be overturned, but states should regulate abortion rather than adopt a constitutional change.” [Nashua Telegraph8/20/10] 

Voted for a National Abortion Ban. In September 2015, Ayotte voted for a bill that would prohibit abortions in cases where the probable age of the fetus is 20 weeks or later and would impose criminal penalties on doctors who violate the ban. It would provide exceptions for cases in which the woman’s life is in danger as well as for pregnancies that are a result of rape if, as amended, for pregnancies that are a result of rape against an adult woman, the woman received counseling or medical treatment for the rape at least 48 hours prior to the abortion. An exception would be provided for pregnancies resulting from rape or incest against a minor if the rape or incest had been previously reported to law enforcement or another government agency authorized to act on reports of child abuse. [HR 36, Vote #268, 9/22/15] 

In 2010, Ayotte Opposed Employers Offering Paid Sick Leave to Workers. According to the Nashua Telegraph, “Hodes endorsed raising the minimum wage to include increases in cost-of-living, giving unions the option of organizing by collecting names of supporters rather than through a secret ballot vote and mandating employers offer paid sick leave to their workers. Ayotte opposed all three proposed changes in federal labor laws.” [Nashua Telegraph, 9/23/10]

2014: Ayotte Voted Against Bill to Increase the Federal Minimum Wage To $10.10. [S. 2223, Vote #117, 4/30/14] 

  • Increasing the Federal Minimum Wage to $10.10 Would Have Meant a Raise for More than 100k Workers in New Hampshire. Increasing the federal minimum wage to $10.10 would mean a raise for 113,000 New Hampshire workers. [Economic Policy Institute12/19/13]

2015: Ayotte Voted Against an Increase in the Minimum Wage. [S.Amdt. 881 to S.Con.Res. 11, Vote #93, 3/26/15] 

The “On Notice” list can be found at http://republicansonnotice.tumblr.com and EMILY’s List will be communicating about those on the list to its network of over three million members nationwide. “On Notice” will continue to be updated throughout the election cycle and will feature incumbents at all levels of government who have exhibited extreme anti-woman and anti-family positions through statements, policy, and voting records. 

EMILY’s List, the nation’s largest resource for women in politics, has raised over $400 million to support pro-choice Democratic women candidates – making it one of the most successful political organizations ever. We recruit and train candidates, support strong campaigns, research women’s issues, and turn out women voters. We’ve trained over 9,000 women to run and helped elect over 100 women to the House, 19 to the Senate, 11 governors, and over 700 to state and local office. Since its founding in 1985, almost one-third of the candidates EMILY’s List has helped elect to Congress have been women of color – including every single Latina, African American, and Asian American Democratic congresswoman currently serving.

EMILY’s List Endorses Maggie Hassan for Senate in New Hampshire

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today EMILY’s List, the nation’s largest resource for women in politics, endorsed Maggie Hassan for Senate in New Hampshire.

“Maggie Hassan is a tireless champion for New Hampshire women and families,” said Stephanie Schriock, president of EMILY’s List. “Throughout her career of public service Maggie has fought to create jobs, expanded health insurance coverage to over forty thousand Granite Staters, defended women’s access to health care, and made college more affordable. Her extraordinary leadership as governor was critical in passing two bipartisan budgets that give working families a fair shot. Extreme Republicans depend on Kelly Ayotte to advance their failed agenda, but Maggie is running for Senate to fight for New Hampshire women and families in Washington. With control of the Senate in the balance, the stakes could not be higher for New Hampshire and for women across the country – and the EMILY’s List community of over three million members is thrilled to stand with Maggie Hassan.” 

Maggie Hassan is running to represent New Hampshire in the U.S. Senate, where she’ll fight for hardworking women and families in the state. When her son Ben was diagnosed with cerebral palsy 26 years ago, Maggie realized that the reason he would be able to go to school with the other children in their community was “because of the advocates and families who had come before us.”  Shortly after Ben’s diagnosis, Maggie became an advocate herself, balancing her job as an attorney with working with Concord politicians to make better policies for children. Growing up, her father taught her that “policies that don’t help people are bad policies,” and Maggie has spent her career in public service motivated by that same belief.

From her time in the New Hampshire state legislature to her years serving as the state’s governor, Maggie has shown she knows what to do to get things done—and she’s done it with pragmatism and compassion. Because of Ben’s diagnosis, issues like equal pay, access to public education, and access to affordable insurance are deeply personal for her. Maggie is pro-choice and strongly supports the right of women to make their own reproductive health care decisions. As governor, she worked to expand access to Medicaid coverage for some of New Hampshire’s most vulnerable citizens and, under her watch, New Hampshire was named one of the best states in the country for child well-being. When she is elected, Maggie will bring her New Hampshire values with her to the U.S. Senate, believing that “the equal devotion to individual freedom and community [that] we share in New Hampshire is what makes America unique in the world.” 


EMILY’s List, the nation’s largest resource for women in politics, has raised over $400 million to support pro-choice Democratic women candidates – making it one of the most successful political organizations ever. We recruit and train candidates, support strong campaigns, research women’s issues, and turn out women voters. We’ve trained over 9,000 women to run and helped elect over 100 women to the House, 19 to the Senate, 11 governors, and over 700 to state and local office. Since its founding in 1985, almost one-third of the candidates EMILY’s List has helped elect to Congress have been women of color – including every single Latina, African American, and Asian American Democratic congresswoman currently serving.


Suddenly Sen Ayotte Supports Working Pregnant Women But What About All Working Moms?

It is official Governor Maggie Hassan announced she is challenging Senator Kelly Ayotte for her seat in the US Senate. Let the games begin!

Senator Ayotte is coming out swinging with her first online ad entitled “Workplace Fairness,” that focuses on her new legislative proposal, co-sponsored by Senator Shaheen, which would help to end workplace discrimination for pregnant women.

I don’t say this often but I actually agree with Sen. Ayotte that something needs to be done to protect pregnant workers from workplace discrimination and provide pregnant women alternative work during their pregnancy, however I have been pushing for this type of legislation for years now.

Senators Shaheen and Ayotte introduced this legislative in June of this year after the Supreme Court ruled that UPS discriminated against Peggy Young by not offering her light duty work after her doctor instructed her not to lift heavy things due to her pregnancy.

Here is the kicker, this new legislation is actually old legislation submitted in a new legislative term. The bill, the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, was actually submitted in September of 2012 and again in May of 2013.

In her new video, Sen Ayotte fails to mention that she refused to support the very same bill not once but twice when it was previously introduced since Ayotte has been in Washington.

Why the change of heart? What is different about this bill now?

It is not so much that the bill has changed it is that Sen. Ayotte is facing a strong progressive candidate in Maggie Hassan.

Suddenly as the campaign ramps up Sen. Ayotte supports the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, but what happens after that expectant mother delivers her baby?

Sen Ayotte has repeatedly said that paid sick leave is “an issue that should be addressed by employers rather than mandated by the government.”

What is the difference between supporting pregnant women in the workplace and supporting parents in the workplace? If you support Pregnancy Fairness why not paid sick leave.

Ayotte did introduce her own paid leave bill with Mitch McConnell earlier this year, but her bill was nothing but an election year stunt that would force workers to choose between overtime pay and leave time.

Let us not forget that Sen. Ayotte has a terrible record supporting women and women’s health.

  • Ayotte opposes the paycheck fairness act
  • Ayotte supports repealing the Affordable Care Act which made it law that new mothers have the right to pump breast milk at work in a safe place, and that employers cannot fire or discriminate against nursing moms.
  • Ayotte supports the misguided Hobby Lobby decision.
  • Ayotte has voted multiple times to allow employers to deny women access to contraception.
  • Ayotte introduced a sham birth control bill that would increase costs for women and is opposed by the American Congress of OB-GYNs.
  • Ayotte has voted repeatedly to defund Planned Parenthood and other family planning centers, which provide critical health services including breast exams.

I don’t have to tell you – but I am going to anyway – Senator Ayotte’s new challenger, Governor Hassan, has been a staunch supporter of working women and women’s health.

Hassan signed into law a Paycheck Fairness bill, expanded Medicaid to give more Granite Staters access to quality healthcare, and in her first term worked to restore the devastating cuts to Planned Parenthood.

Gov. Hassan continues to fight the Republican led Executive Council’s cuts to Planned Parenthood in New Hampshire.

“The council’s vote to defund Planned Parenthood will hurt the health and economic well-being of thousands of Granite Staters. Moving forward, I will continue to fight to ensure that women and families have access to the important health services that are essential to the economic security and vitality of our families,” said Hassan.

Despite what Sen. Ayotte is saying in her poll-tested advertising, she is not the champion for women she claims to be. She is the same old partisan hack who has fueled the continued gridlock in Washington.

Maggie Hassan Announces Her Run For US Senate Against Kelly Ayotte

Maggie Hassan Pledges to Take Her Bipartisan Approach, Common Sense, and Commitment to Problem-Solving to the U.S. Senate

Concord – Pledging to take her bipartisan approach, common sense, and commitment to problem-solving and results to the Senate, Governor Maggie Hassan today announced her candidacy to represent New Hampshire in the United States Senate.

Click here for Maggie’s full video message to Granite Staters.

“In order to continue working to realize our state’s full potential we need a response from Washington that meets the progress we’re making here at home,” said Governor Maggie Hassan. “Washington has given in to powerful special interests and lobbyists who rig the system for themselves and against the middle-class, and I believe we can do better for New Hampshire families.”

As Governor, Maggie Hassan has worked to bring people together to build a stronger, more innovative New Hampshire where education and small businesses drive job creation – promoting a business-friendly environment that has New Hampshire’s unemployment rate at the lowest level since 2008.

A determined fighter for New Hampshire families, Maggie believes we need a response from Washington that meets the progress we’re making here in the Granite State.

“Washington has lost its way on too many of the priorities that matter to New Hampshire. You can count on me to take my bipartisan approach, common sense, and commitment to problem-solving to the Senate to get results for New Hampshire families,” added Hassan.

Executive Councilor Chris Sununu Announces His Campaign For Governor

Yesterday it was announced that Executive Councilor Chris Sununu is officially running for Governor of NH.  Sununu told the Concord Monitor:

“As governor, I will work to re-establish an economic climate that will provide dependable, high-paying jobs, and develop pro-growth initiatives to stop the loss of skilled workers and young people to other states,” he said in a statement.

Sununu called for education reform, providing more money for charter schools, performance-based pay for teachers and reinstating school building aid. He also said he would “veto a sales or income tax.”

Many working families and especially women in the Granite State are very familiar with Councilor Sununu.  He recently voted to defund Planned Parenthood leaving thousands of women without access to healthcare.  He has also opposed expanding Medicaid and blocking the expansion of rail service to New Hampshire.

“New Hampshire women should not be forced to seek important health services from an organization that is immersed in scandal and currently being investigated by Congress,” Sununu wrote in a letter to Health and Human Services Commissioner Nick Toumpas. “They deserve more choices and greater access to health care.”

Executive Councilor Colin Van Ostern responded to the Councilor Sununu’s announcement:

“Executive Councilor Chris Sununu’s criticisms today of our state, his hits on Governor Hassan, and his pledge to return the state to what it was like in his youth are simply not the path forward to a brighter future for New Hampshire. In the two and a half years I have served next to Chris on the state Executive Council, he has voted to restrict access to basic health care for thousands of New Hampshire women, against key renewable energy projects, against commuter rail to Boston, and against the bipartisan, business-endorsed law that expanded health care to tens of thousands. A brighter future for our state needs leaders who look forward — as Governor Hassan does — not backwards into the past.”

The New Hampshire Republican Party told the Concord Monitor:

“Republicans are pleased that an extremely formidable candidate like Chris Sununu is already declaring his candidacy while qualified candidates like Rep. Frank Edelblut are also considering running,” Chairwoman Jennifer Horn said in a statement. “We expect a positive and productive primary that will produce a strong nominee who will take back the corner office in 2016.”

The New Hampshire Democratic Party also released a statement after the announcement:

“Chris Sununu voted to restrict access to birth control and cancer screenings for thousands of women who rely on local Planned Parenthood health centers and opposed the successful bipartisan expansion of health care to over 41,000 New Hampshire citizens. He’s stood in the way of numerous renewable energy projects that would cut energy costs and create jobs and has done everything he can to stop commuter rail from Boston to central New Hampshire and the jobs that will come with it. He also supported the fiscally irresponsible GOP budget that would create a $90 million hole in our state’s budget.”

“New Hampshire can’t afford another Sununu’s crusade to take us backwards, undermine our economic progress, and hurt women and families – and luckily, after Republicans have lost six straight campaigns for Governor in this state, that’s going to happen again if his father’s hand-picked candidate makes it to next fall.”

It is very early in the campaign so it is still unknown who will be running for Governor.  There are still questions as to whether NH’s current Governor, Maggie Hassan, will run for a third term or whether she will run against Senator Ayotte for U.S. Senate.

Fact-Checking Walt Havenstein

walt havensteinFACT CHECK: New Hampshire ALREADY has one of the BEST “Business Tax Climates” in the Nation

Fact: Despite Walt Havenstein’s misleading claims, the very study his campaign has cited – the Tax Foundation’s State Business Tax Climate Index – shows that New Hampshire’s business tax climate ranks 7th best in the country (and number one in New England).

The Council on State Taxation (COST) also tallied “all of the taxes paid by businesses in a given state, not just corporate income taxes, but property, sales, and personal income taxes as well” and found “that figure was 4.2 percent in FY 2012, markedly lower than the national average of 4.8 percent and less than 38 other states.” [NHFPI, 8/6/14]

FACT CHECK: So-Called “Right to Work”

Fact: Despite Havenstein’s claims, so-called “right to work” really means “right to work for less.”

The Economic Policy Institute’s report, “’Right-to-Work’ Wrong for New Hampshire,” explains that “Contrary to what RTW backers have claimed, the scientific analysis of right-to-work laws shows that they lower wages and benefits for both union and nonunion workers alike without exhibiting any positive impact on job growth.”

(Read NHLN coverage of Right to Work (for Less) here and here.)

FACT CHECK: Havenstein’s Misleading and Dishonest Budget Attacks

Fact: Governor Hassan has repeatedly pledged that she would veto an income or sales tax if one were to reach her desk.

Walt Havenstein’s false attack ignores that agencies are required by law “to submit both a maintenance budget that includes the cost of existing services going forward and a budget that incorporates new costs such as additional personnel or new legislatively mandated programs or technology.” [Union Leader, 10/14/14]

Havenstein’s misleading attack also ignores that Governor Hassan told state agencies their budget requests are non-starters, and already instructed agencies to submit lower proposals. [Union Leader, 8/7/14]

FACT CHECK: Havenstein’s Highway Fund Plan Cuts Troopers, Ignores Constitution

Fact: Walt Havenstein’s plan to cut the Department of Safety’s funding would take troopers off the road and make New Hampshire’s highways less safe.

The New Hampshire Constitution says that the highway funds shall be used for “the construction, reconstruction and maintenance of public highways within this state, including the supervision of traffic thereon.”  [NH Constitution, Part Second, Article 6-a]  The reference to the “supervision of traffic” allows highway funds to be given to the Department of Safety to fund state troopers.

In her bipartisan budget, Governor Hassan worked to maintain New Hampshire’s status as one of the safest states in the nation by putting more troopers on the road. By cutting the Department of Safety’s highway funding, Havenstein would reverse this effort and pull troopers off New Hampshire’s highways.

FACT CHECK: Havenstein’s Failed Record as CEO of SAIC

Fact: Failed CEO Walt Havenstein drove SAIC into the ground, the company lost millions, shed thousands of jobs, and saw its stock value nose-dive.

Despite Havenstein’s attempts to duck responsibility for the company’s performance during his disastrous tenure, the Nashua Telegraph pointed out that, “there’s little to dispute the company’s stock and job loss performance.”

Speaking of the strategy Havenstein put in place at SAIC to push for big government contracts, the Washington Post added, “The company struggled under the strategy, watching its profit and revenue decline.”

FACT CHECK: Over a Year Into Havenstein’s Tenure as CEO, SAIC Gave a 5% Raise to Consultants at Heart of Massive CityTime Fraud Scandal

Fact: During Walt Havenstein’s time as CEO of SAIC, the U.S. Department of Justice discovered that his company was involved in a massive, $500 million fraud scheme against taxpayers.

Despite Havenstein’s claims that he took action and held people accountable, the New York Daily News reported that, “In early December 2010, only weeks before federal agents launched the first arrests in the scandal, the city’s Office of Payroll Administration permitted SAIC to give 5% across-the-board pay increases to all consultants supplied by Technodyne.” [NY Daily News, 11/21/13]

The employees and owners of the TechnoDyne consulting firm were at the heart of the massive CityTime fraud scheme. Before the U.S. Department of Justice discovered the scheme, SAIC employees funneled $400 million in taxpayer dollars to TechnoDyne. [US DOJ Press Release, 6/20/11]

The across-the-board pay increase for all TechnoDyne consultants came over a year after Havenstein became CEO of SAIC on September 21, 2009. At the time of the raise, the CityTime project was already hundreds of millions of dollars over budget. [NY Times, 12/15/10]

See here for public documents showing that SAIC gave a five-percent raise to the TechnoDyne consultants on December 9, 2010, just six days before the U.S. Department of Justice’s first round of arrests in the case.


Failed CEO Walt Havenstein Falsely Claims Hobby Lobby ‘Would Never Apply’ in New Hampshire

In Temple Adath Yeshurun Debate, Havenstein Demonstrates His Cluelessness on New Hampshire State Law, the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby Decision, and Workers’ Rights

MANCHESTER—Failed CEO Walt Havenstein doubled down on his support for the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision that allows an employer to deny a woman health insurance that covers contraception. Havenstein also demonstrated his cluelessness on New Hampshire state law by falsely claiming the Hobby Lobby decision would “never apply to begin with” in New Hampshire.

“Walt Havenstein is either intentionally misleading voters, or he simply doesn’t understand New Hampshire’s laws,” said State Representative Candace Bouchard, who chairs the House Reproductive Rights Caucus. “Contrary to Havenstein’s false statements, the anti-choice Hobby Lobby decision does apply in New Hampshire and it means that certain employers here can deny women contraception coverage.”

At the Temple Adath Yeshurun debate, Havenstein reiterated his support for the Hobby Lobby decision. Adding, “In New Hampshire, because of our laws, [the Hobby Lobby decision] would never apply to begin with.” Havenstein’s Communications Director Henry Goodwin stated on Twitter that “No one would lose access” to contraception in New Hampshire under Hobby Lobby because the state’s “insurance mandates mean it can’t happen.”

Both Havenstein’s and Goodwin’s comments inaccurately describe New Hampshire’s laws, the Hobby Lobby decision, and the decision’s impact on New Hampshire women. The state mandate requiring health insurers to provide contraception coverage excludes employers that self-insure. The Hobby Lobby decision allows these self-insured New Hampshire employers to deny employees contraception coverage. Many large companies choose to self-insure, including Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., which has a location in Manchester and no longer has to provide contraception coverage to its employees there under the Supreme Court’s decision.

“Not only did Havenstein double down on his support for the misguided Hobby Lobby decision, but he’s also said that the radical anti-woman NHGOP platform – which would outlaw some types of contraception and in vetro fertilization – would be his ‘guideline’ for decision-making. If one thing is clear, it’s that Walt Havenstein can’t be trusted on women’s health care,” added Representative Bouchard.

Click here for the full video of Havenstein’s false claims about the Hobby Lobby decision.


Havenstein: “I can use that platform as the guideline for me for making decisions.”

“’I can use that platform as the guideline for me for making decisions.’ The platform is not binding, Havenstein added, but it forms as a “guideline” for decision-making. As the Republican gubernatorial nominee, Havenstein also said he has an ‘obligation’ to support the party toward victory.” [Concord Monitor, October 12, 2014]

New Hampshire GOP Adopts Fetal ‘Personhood’ Into Platform

“Fetal personhood measures, which have been defeated in several states, would grant legal rights to zygotes from the moment of fertilization. The measures are extremely controversial because they would criminalize abortion without exceptions and could ban some forms of contraception and in vitro fertilization.” [Huffington Post, September 22, 2014]

Havenstein Supports Limiting Access to “Life-Saving Aspect of Women’s Health Care”

“Contraceptive services are a fundamental and at times life-saving aspect of women’s health care. By ruling the way it did, the Supreme Court has opened the door for religion and politics to control access to those services. Despite their protestations to the contrary, that is exactly what Brown and Havenstein are championing.” [Concord Monitor Editorial, 7/2/14]

Havenstein Praises Supreme Court’s Decision on the Massachusetts Buffer Zone Law

“Havenstein praised the court’s decision and condemned the New Hampshire law Gov. Maggie Hassan signed that takes effect on July 10.” [Nashua Telegraph, 6/30/14]

Havenstein Unwilling To Comment On Anti-Choice Bills Before The Legislature

The Union Leader also reported that Walt Havenstein’s campaign would not answer a series of questions regarding Havenstein’s stance on various anti-choice bills before the legislature. [Union Leader, 4/21/14]

Havenstein Signed the Koch Brothers’ Pledge to Block Affordable Care Act and Medicaid Expansion

Havenstein signed the Koch Brothers-backed Americans for Prosperity New Hampshire pledge, which commits that he’d work to repeal Medicaid expansion and block measures that help women access affordable health services. [WMUR, 7/30/14]

Governor Hassas Praises Labor At NH AFL-CIO Labor Day Breakfast


Governor Hassan as well as many others took time out of their busy schedules to stop and honor Labor at the New Hampshire AFL-CIO’s annual Labor Day Breakfast.

Labor Day is the one day a year when the entire nation stops to look back and praise the achievements of organized labor throughout history.  Some, like Governor Hassan, respect and honor the hard work that union members do every day.

“You all make up the highly skilled workforce that makes up the backbone of our economy,” Hassan said.

Unions have always fought for better pay and better working conditions, and that leads to better pay and better working conditions for all Granite Staters.

I am proud to stand before you as your Governor and say that, with your support, we have been able to come together, and we have begun to reverse the devastating cuts and misguided policies of the last legislature,” said Hassan.

Governor Hassan has also shown she supports working families by pushing for, and signing, legislation like “Paycheck Fairness,” that work to reduce the income inequality between men and women.  She also worked to freeze in-state tuition at the University of New Hampshire schools.  She proudly announced that next year the Community College System of NH would actually lower tuition by 5%.

There was one piece of legislation that Governor Hassan was eager to see, that never made it to her desk, and that was an increase in the NH Minimum Wage.  The House passed a modest increase over two years, and Governor Hassan was very supportive of that legislation. However, when the bill got to the Senate, it was killed by a party line vote.  The Republican’s in the Senate, killed that bill and every Granite Stater should know it.

We need to ensure that this November we elect leaders, like Governor Hassan, who will stand up for working families, who will fight for a minimum wage increase, who will fight to keep expanding our healthcare options, and fight against the corporate greed that is infecting our legislature.  We need to ensure that we elect leaders who will oppose Right To Work (for less) in all its forms.

Below is the unedited address given by Governor Hassan at the NH AFL-CIO Labor Day Breakfast.

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