First Maggie for NH TV Ad Highlights Governor’s Family Story That Helped Draw Her to Public Service
CONCORD – Maggie for New Hampshire today announced its first television ad of the campaign, “Got Involved,” highlighting how the challenges and opportunities that Governor Maggie Hassan’s family has experienced helped inspire her to enter public service.
Maggie Hassan was drawn to public service as an advocate fighting to ensure that children like her son Ben, who experiences severe disabilities, would be fully included in their communities and have the same opportunities that all parents want for their children. And she has continued working ever since to build a stronger, more innovative New Hampshire where all of our citizens are included in our economic success and prosperity.
“All families have challenges, what’s really important is that they also have community,” said Maggie. “That’s one of the reasons I got involved in public service. Because it made it so clear to me how much you can accomplish when you work together. “
Working across party lines, Maggie froze tuition at the university system for the first time in 25 years while lowering it at community colleges, strengthened job training programs, expanded health coverage to nearly 50,000 Granite Staters, and fought for women’s access to safe and affordable health care. In the Senate, Maggie will stand up to corporate special interests who have rigged the system in Washington and keep fighting for bipartisan solutions to help ensure that all Granite Staters have the opportunity to get ahead and stay ahead.
The six-figure ad buy will run on New Hampshire and Boston broadcast stations as well as on cable and online.
Maggie Will Continue Working to Support Job-Creating Small Businesses, Encourage Innovation, and Expand Economic Opportunity for all Granite Staters
CONCORD – During small business week, New Hampshire small business leaders say Governor Maggie Hassan’s bipartisan leadership to support job-creating small businesses and encourage innovation makes her the best choice to represent New Hampshire in the U.S. Senate.
“Small businesses are the backbone of our state’s economy, and as Governor, I have always fought to support job-creating small businesses, encourage innovation, and expand opportunity for all Granite Staters,” said Governor Maggie Hassan. “Unfortunately, Washington has given in to corporate special interests that rig the system for themselves and against the middle class, and I’m running for United States Senate to fight to ensure that Washington does better for all of New Hampshire’s families and small businesses.”
As Governor, Maggie fought to enact two fiscally responsible, bipartisan budgets that protected critical economic priorities while holding the line against an income or sales tax, and she has made the tough choices to consistently manage the state budget to a surplus. She froze in-state tuition at New Hampshire universities for the first time in 25 years and reduced tuition at community colleges, cut taxes for research & development and small businesses and developed the award-winning “Live Free and Start” initiative to support start-up companies and help them access capital, enabling them to launch and grow. She signed a bipartisan transportation funding bill that invests in road and bridge projects across the state, including finishing the expansion of I-93, and she has also supported job training programs to help ensure that our workers are ready for good jobs in the changing global economy.
In the Senate, Maggie will continue fighting for the priorities that will support small businesses, encourage innovation, and expand opportunity for working families: fixing our roads and bridges; making college more affordable so all hard-working Granite Staters have the skills they need to get ahead and stay ahead; and eliminating tax breaks for Big Oil and outsourcers so we can provide tax credits for small businesses that create jobs here and cut taxes for middle class families.
See below for what a few New Hampshire small business owners have to say about why they support Maggie for Senate:
Executive Councilor Chris Pappas, Puritan Backroom, Manchester – “As both an Executive Councilor and a small business owner, I know Governor Hassan has a deep commitment to helping small businesses thrive. Governor Hassan understands that small businesses are essential to a flourishing economy throughout New Hampshire, and she has fought to ensure that businesses owners have the support we need to innovate and grow. I know that Governor Hassan will continue to be a strong advocate for our small businesses in the United States Senate, and I am proud to support her.”
Mark Kelley, White Mountain Lumber, Berlin – “A strong economy in the North Country is critical for our people and our entire state, and Governor Hassan has worked tirelessly to ensure our small businesses are getting ahead. Governor Hassan has made critical investments in businesses development, infrastructure, and transportation which have helped spur our economy and create jobs. The Governor has been committed to fighting for small businesses and economic development in the North Country and across our entire state, and I know she will continue to make our voices heard and get results in the United States Senate.”
Adria Bagshaw, The WH Bagshaw Company, Nashua – “I’m proud to support Maggie Hassan for U.S. Senate because she understands the issues that are important to small businesses like mine. Washington could use her common-sense, collaborative approach, and New Hampshire could use a Senator like Maggie Hassan who understands the importance of investing in business priorities like our infrastructure and education system while holding the line against a sales or income tax.”
Mary Collins, former State Director of the New Hampshire Small Business Development Center, of Wolfeboro – “Maggie Hassan knows what it takes to help our small businesses thrive and grow, and even more importantly, she has a proven record of delivering results. From strengthening investments in higher education and job training programs, to passing legislation to fix highways, roads and bridges, to making it easier for start-up companies to launch and grow, Maggie has shown that she can work across party lines to get results for small businesses. Now, we need her to take her bipartisan approach to the U.S. Senate where she will always fight to support small businesses and get things done.”
Mary Jo Brown, Brown & Company Design, Portsmouth – “Governor Hassan’s record of supporting higher education shows she understands the needs of small businesses here in New Hampshire. She’s also committed to ensuring equal pay for equal work which would give working families, and our economy as a whole, a much-needed boost. That’s why I’m proud to join her campaign for Senate. I know she’ll bring her Granite State priorities and collaborative approach to Washington to deliver real results.”
Senate Republicans are flipping off the President of the United States by refusing to conduct a confirmation hearing for his nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court.
By doing this, the majority party in the Senate is saying it doesn’t acknowledge that Barack Obama is the legitimate, twice-elected U.S. President with the right and duty under the U.S. Constitution to nominate justices to fill vacancies on the high court.
Just as significantly, by doing this, Republicans are refusing to accept the decision of 65 million Americans who went to the polls in November of 2012 and re-elected Barack Obama as U.S. President. President Obama is the first commander in chief since 1956 to win 51 percent of the vote twice. Republicans are thumbing their noses at those citizens, the majority, who voted for President Obama. The GOP is expressing deep derision for the American democratic process by obstructing the duly elected President of the United States from fulfilling his Constitutional obligations.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell ~ Image by DonkeyHotey/Flickr
Before the late Justice Antonin Scalia’s body was cold, truly, less than an hour after his death was announced, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell placed self-serving politics above grace, sympathy and constitutionality. Forsaking public expression of condolence to Scalia’s widow and nine children, McConnell announced instead that Republicans would prevent the sitting President, who at that point still had a year minus three weeks and three days left to serve in office, from naming a replacement for Scalia.
“The American people should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court Justice. Therefore, this vacancy should not be filled until we have a new president.”
That’s because Republicans don’t like the guy the American people used their voice to choose to be the current president. So Republicans want to give the American people another chance to do what Republicans want them to do.
Ignoring McConnell’s attempt at power-usurping, President Obama last week nominated Chief Judge for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit Merrick B. Garland to fill Scalia’s vacancy.
Despite Hatch’s prior support for Garland, the Senator has not called on McConnell to schedule the confirmation hearings that are the next step in a normal nomination process. No, like McConnell, Hatch wants to wait to see if he likes the voice of the American people in November better than when they spoke in 2008 and 2012.
The assertion from McConnell and fellow Republicans that the “American people should have a voice” is doubly duplicitous coming from the party that has spent the past five years trying every trick in the book to deny large swaths of Americans their right to express their voice at the ballot box with all manner of voter-suppression legislation.
It is Republicans trying to make students and old people and poor people jump through ridiculous and onerous hoops to exercise their sacred right as citizens to vote. Apparently Republicans don’t want to hear these people’s voices, probably because so many are the voices of Democrats.
The truth about this let-the-American-people-have-a-voice gambit slipped out of the mouths of indiscreet Republicans after President Obama nominated the moderate Judge Garland. Hatch and Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake are among the GOPers who revealed that they might hold confirmation hearings for Judge Garland after the Presidential election.
Not if a Republican is elected, of course. But if the American people choose Bernie Sanders or Hillary Clinton, either of whom is likely to nominate someone far more liberal than Judge Garland, then the Republicans would immediately go for the moderate Garland.
If the GOP Senators did that, they would be ignoring the voice of the American people – people who had just voted for someone more liberal. That would be the voice of the American people that McConnell proclaimed was so very, very important before Justice Scalia’s body was cold.
The court McConnell is playing with is crucial to working people. Before Justice Scalia died, for example, there was every expectation that his conservative bloc was going to outlaw fair share fees paid by workers in the public sector who choose not to join their union but who benefit from services provided by collective bargaining. This is a case called Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association.
Private sector unions like mine knew that conservative groups would come after us next. Their intent is to starve workers out. If right wingers and their corporate backers can deprive labor organizations of fees for services provided, then workers won’t have the money they need for good research before collective bargaining or good lawyers to represent them in grievances against employers. Then big corporations win every time. And workers fall further and further behind.
Now, however, Friedrichs will likely end in a 4-4 stalemate, reverting back to the lower court ruling, where the conservatives eagerly agreed to lose in their excessive hurry to get their appeal before their sure-bet Scalia. In the end, they outsmarted themselves.
The U.S. Constitution states that the President “Shall nominate, and by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, shall appoint. . . judges of the Supreme Court.” It doesn’t say, “except when the President is a Democrat and the majority in the Senate is Republican.” It doesn’t say, “except in Presidential election years.”
In fact, the Senate has confirmed six Supreme Court justices in election years since 1912. In the most recent case, when Republican President Ronald Reagan nominated Anthony Kennedy, a majority Democrat Senate confirmed him, unanimously, in the Presidential election year of 1988.
Antonin Scalia prided himself in being a strict Constitutionalist. If McConnell wants to stop the late justice from spinning in his grave, then the majority leader needs to order the Senate to perform its Constitutionally-mandated job by conducting a confirmation hearing for Judge Garland followed by a vote on his nomination to the Supreme Court.
Ayotte Campaign Lurches Rightward With Endorsement From Anti-Women’s Health Extremist, Failed Candidate Ovide Lamontagne
Lamontagne Also Opposes Public Kindergarten, Believes New Hampshire Should Opt Out of Medicare
Concord, N.H. – Today, Kelly Ayotte’s turbulent campaign made another lurch to the extreme right by securing the endorsement of failed perennial candidate and anti-women’s health extremist Ovide Lamontagne.
And women’s health isn’t the only issue on which Lamontagne’s views are far out-of-step with New Hampshire voters. He opposed bringing public kindergarten statewide and believes New Hampshire should opt out of Medicare and it should be turned into a block grant system.
“Kelly Ayotte’s receiving endorsements from extremists like Ovide Lamontagne is a sure sign that her campaign turbulence has her playing defense—and a very shaky defense at that,” said New Hampshire Democratic Party Press Secretary Melissa Miller. “There’s a reason Lamontagne has lost every office he’s run for, and that should have Ayotte very concerned for her chances in November—New Hampshire voters don’t take kindly to anti-women’s health extremists playing politics with access to needed care.”
Former NH State Senator Jim Rubens Challenges
Sen. Ayotte to a debate on American worker wages
A poll released today by the conservative group Americans for Limited Government and independent pollster Pat Caddell shocked the establishment about voters’ attitudes on the 2,000 page Trans-Pacific Trade Partnership agreement. The shocker: 66% of Republicans oppose the TPP. Some highlights from the results:
– 69% of Republicans say they would be more likely to vote for a candidate for U.S. Congress who promises to put a stop to the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
– 63% of Republicans oppose an effort to pass TPP in a special session of Congress.
– 85% GOP voters agree that “political leaders are more interested in protecting their power and privilege than doing what is right for the American people.”
– 76% of Republicans say “the same political elite who have been rigging the political process in Washington are the same ones that have been rigging trade deals that hurt Americans, but benefit themselves.”
-77% of Americans oppose a Republican leadership effort to vote on TPP in a lame-duck session.
– An astoundingly low 4 percent of GOP voters think that free trade deals have been “more of a benefit to the U.S.”.
Jim Rubens issued the following statement in response to the poll results:
“Since the first drafts were leaked in 2014, I have publicly opposed the TPP. I am firmly on the side of American workers. It’s time for the U.S. Senate to take the side of American workers and against the crony capitalists and their bought-and-paid-for politicians who want to export American jobs and drive down American wages.
“Conservative Republicans are way out front in opposition to the TPP. It’s unfortunate that Sen. Kelly Ayotte not only supports this crony capitalist agreement, but she voted last May to give President Obama fast-track trade authority to grease it through Congress. New Hampshire is among the top 10 states most hurt by our trade deficit with China, having lost over 22,000 jobs over the decade ending 2011. It’s clear that voters think that Washington career politicians are selling them out.
“Many people have referred to the TPP as ‘NAFTA on steroids’ because this deal benefits other countries at the expense of American workers who are being replaced by cheap foreign labor. 85% of GOP voters have lost faith in the Washington political class because of their blatant crony capitalism. I’m running for senate to give voters a way to stop this wholesale sell out of the American worker.”
In the press conference discussing the poll results, pollster Pat Caddell predicts there will be significant primary losses based on this issue.
Rubens challenges Sen. Ayotte to a debate on TPP and how to get American wages rising again.
In what is quickly becoming a pivotal issue in the 2016 US Senate elections across the country, Senator Ayotte has taken a firm stance against approving a new nominee to the Supreme Court.
Boston.com writes that, “the New Hampshire senator’s decision to align herself with her Republican colleagues in refusing to take action on a potential Supreme Court nominee, according to a poll out Wednesday, is not helping her chances. At a two-to-one rate, Granite Staters say Ayotte’s stance on the issue make them less likely to vote for her, according to a new Public Policy Polling poll.”
Firing back at Ayotte, Maggie for NH today released a new web video highlighting that Senator Ayotte has failed a critical test by putting her party leaders before her constitutional duty and refusing to even consider a Supreme Court nominee.
“The people of New Hampshire expect their United States Senators to be independent-minded problem solvers willing to rise above their party, especially at moments of great consequence for our nation,” said Maggie for NH Campaign Manager Marc Goldberg. “This Supreme Court vacancy is one of those rare moments in Kelly Ayotte’s career – a true test of her independence and her leadership qualities – and by siding with her party over justice for Granite Staters and Americans, Ayotte has failed that test.”
“The President has a constitutional obligation to nominate and the Senate has an obligation to advise and consent, ultimately decide whether to confirm the nominee.
And that they would immediately say that they just don’t want to do their jobs, speaks to the frustration that the people of our country and in New Hampshire have with the dysfunction in Washington. And I’m very concerned that my opponent is a part of that dysfunction.
…What I think everyone in Washington should start focusing on is what matters to hardworking Americans, not to the political party, and not to the special interests who are calling the shots right now in Washington.”
Last week we celebrated the 7th anniversary of President Obama signing the Lilly Ledbetter Act to fight the gender wage inequality. Some, including my own Senator, Kelly Ayotte, are still fighting against the hard working women of the Granite State by opposing legislation to close the gender wage gap.
According to the National Women’s Law Center, women make 76 cents for every dollar earned by men in New Hampshire. The numbers are worse for minority women: African American women earn 65 cents and Latinas 70 cents for every dollar earned by white, non-Hispanic men.
“The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act marked a critical step forward in the fight to ensure women receive equal pay for equal work, but the fight is far from over,” said NH Democratic Party Press Secretary Melissa Miller. “Women are still paid an average of 79 cents on the dollar for full-time work compared to men, while politicians like Kelly Ayotte stand on the wrong side of progress by obstructing efforts to close the wage gap to appease their special interest backers like the Koch Brothers.”
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.
Ayotte’s opposition to equal pay legislation does not stop there. In April of 2014, Ayotte voted to block a “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,” wrote CQ magazine.
“Yet again, Kelly Ayotte has shown that she could not be more out of touch when it comes to the issues that matter to women and families. Time and time again, she’s voted against the wellbeing of New Hampshire women—and her record of voting to block gender equality in pay is especially shameful,” said Marcy Stech, communications director for EMILY’s List.
Just to show how much she cared Senator Ayotte voted against Paycheck Fairness legislation multiple times and in turn submitted her own legislation to make the problem worse.
“Ayotte votedagainstPaycheck Fairness a whole bunch of times. 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,” wrote Kaili Joy Gray for Wonkette.
“It is troubling that Senator Ayotte has gone so far out of her way to oppose this basic economic equality – voting four times against the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would help ensure that women can earn equal pay for equal work. And even worse, she is now trying to cover up her record with a sham bill rife with loopholes that would continue allowing employers to prevent the sharing of salary information and keep women from determining when they are being paid less than their male counterparts.,” said Maggie for NH Campaign Treasurer Kathy Sullivan.
“In November, New Hampshirites have a clear choice to elect a true champion in Maggie Hassan, who will move forward solutions for New Hampshire women – and make sure that they are finally paid what they deserve,” said Stech.
“Lilly Ledbetter took her fight for equality and fairness all the way, powering through opposition to change the laws that held her back. And so will women across the Granite State. New Hampshire women deserve a Senator who will fight for progress and economic security for their families, not a Senator who hides behind sham legislation while standing in the way of equality and fairness,” added Miller.
CONCORD – As Kelly Ayotte continues her undisguised attempt to mislead Granite Staters about her record of voting to undermine New Hampshire’s environment and beautiful natural resources, Ayotte voted this morning to oppose efforts to protect clean drinking water for millions of Americans. Ayotte was the only New England Senator to oppose these important clean water protections.
Try as she might to fool voters, Ayotte’s dismal environmental record speaks loud and clear: Ayotte has voted with the Koch Brothers 94% of the time on the environment, including voting multiple times to protect tax breaks for Big Oil and voting to block the Environmental Protection Agency from ever having the ability to reduce greenhouse gases. And Ayotte’s record has earned her a lifetime score of 23% from the League of Conservation Voters – even worse than Scott Brown’s lifetime score of 38%.
“It’s deeply troubling that Kelly Ayotte was the only New England Senator to vote against against important efforts to preserve our beautiful natural resources and protect clean drinking water for millions of Americans,” said Maggie for NH Communications Director Aaron Jacobs. “But siding with corporate special interests over New Hampshire’s environment is nothing new for Ayotte, who has fought to protect tax breaks for Big Oil and votes with the Koch Brothers 94% of the time on environmental issues.”
“Governor Maggie Hassan has always been a strong champion for New Hampshire’s environment, and in the Senate, she will fight to put the Granite State’s beautiful natural resources first, not special interests,” added Jacobs.
Concord, N.H. — As Donald Trump works to maintain his status as the New Hampshire Republican frontrunner, he’s taking a familiar page from the Kelly Ayotte playbook: securing Sarah Palin’s endorsement.
Back in the summer of 2010, the Nashua Telegraph reported that Palin endorsed Kelly Ayotte for Senate, posting on Facebook: “It’s my honor to endorse a Granite State “mama grizzly” … “New Hampshire is lucky to have Kelly Ayotte as a candidate for the U.S. Senate this year.”
“Kelly Ayotte owes her 2010 election in no small part to Sarah Palin’s far-right endorsement that helped deliver the Republican primary for Ayotte, and Granite Staters should be deeply concerned that Palin is now seeking to deliver the New Hampshire Republican primary for Trump too,” said Maggie for NH Communications Director Aaron Jacobs. “As Kelly Ayotte repeatedly doubles down on her pledge to support Trump if he’s the nominee and even refuses to criticize Trump for his dangerous and outrageous comments, it’s hardly surprising that Ayotte’s top 2010 campaign surrogate Sarah Palin is now endorsing Trump as well.”
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