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The Good, The Bad, The Ugly - 6/13/24: The NH Legislature Concludes This Term

by Phil Hatcher


With the legislative session having come to an end, this will be our last Sunday Action Alert of the year. If you have any feedback for how we might Action Alerts better, please email Jodi Langellotti, the Dover Dems communications team chair, or Nancy Vawter or Robbie Warach, the Dover Dems co-chairs.

Thank you


Courtesy: NH Bulletin

Thursday was a good day for Democrats in Concord!



Courtesy: Google Images
  • The bill to prohibit sanctuary cities was killed! Click here to read more on the debate and vote:


Click here to read Gary Rayno’s analysis in InDepthNH of what happened on Thursday:


We were gathered for Sen. Watters' campaign kickoff when our state reps started rolling in, straight from the debate and votes in Concord. They had smiles on their faces and an extra bounce in their step. It was wonderful to see them have a good day, after the very long slog that this session has been.

 

Please remember to take a minute to contact your reps and thank them for their hard work on our behalf: https://www.dovernhdemocrats.org/our-elected-officials

 

Rep. Bill Conlin was particularly fired up. He said he could not wait to start campaigning door to door. He said our message should be very simple: We represent EVERYONE!


  • We don't care if you wear your baseball cap forwards, backwards, sideways, or inside out. We even try to do what is best for people wearing red MAGA hats. EVERYONE. We work for the common good.

  • Trump's repeated promises to focus on legislation to rebuild our nation's infrastructure were pathetic, and fodder for the late-night comics. His true focus was not on Everyone, but on The Few, on tax cuts for the wealthy. But Biden's infrastructure legislation is proving to be truly transformative, with funding going to EVERYONE: to red districts, to blue districts and to purple districts. And watch the MAGA maniacs who voted against the legislation now hypocritically try to take credit for the projects in their districts.

  • The Party of Lincoln has degenerated into the Party of Trump. Lincoln said that our nation was "dedicated to the proposition that all men [i.e. EVERYONE!] are created equal." Trump says, "What's in it for me?"


So, like Rep. Conlin, let's try to use Thursday's successes to motivate us to spread the word far and wide on what we could do for EVERYONE if Democrats are successful in taking the NH governorship, the NH House, the NH Senate, the NH Executive Council, and the US House, while holding the US presidency and the US Senate. Just imagine!

 

But, though the legislature is done (except for possibly reconvening in the fall to consider overriding vetoes), we still have work to do. Because we need to lobby the governor as he considers the bills that reach his desk. (Contact info for the governor is given at the bottom of this email.)

 

Here are some of the topic areas in which the governor will need to make decisions on bills:

 

Bail Reform

 

A bipartisan compromise, HB 318, is on its way to the governor.

American Friends Service Committee had this to say: We’re glad to see that the House and Senate voted to adopt the CoC report for HB 318, wrapping up a year’s worth of negotiations to address concerns – some founded and others unfounded – related to the bail reforms approved in 2018. The proposal was approved by voice vote in the House and by unanimous roll call vote in the Senate. https://afsc.org/programs/new-hampshire 

 

Affordable Housing

 

The legislature was largely unsuccessful in addressing the housing crisis, but one bill, HB 1400, is on its way to the governor. 603 Forward this to say: HB 1400, which helped fix burdensome parking requirements for housing, passed! The amended bill isn’t exactly what we originally hoped for but it’s progress none the less. Read more about HB 1400 https://www.603forward.org/hb1400-statement


Food Security

Courtesy: Google Images

A bill, SB 499, to boost child food assistance in the summer is on its way to the governor. NH Hunger Solutions says: Over 37,000 kids will go hungry every summer if NH doesn't implement the Summer EBT program. Summer EBT is a federally funded program that would bring over 4.5 million federal dollars per year to NH for feeding hungry kids during the summer. Many children depend on school meals but don't have access to these meals in the summer. Summer EBT connects these children to the nutrition they need when school isn't in session. Please contact the Governor and urge him to SIGN SB 499 into law! https://nhhungersolutions.org/

 

Voting Rights

 

HB 1569, which is very similar, but worse, to HB 1370, is on its way to the governor. The Dover Dems Voting Rights Action Group asks you to contact the governor and request he veto this radical bill. Here is what the League of Women Voters of New Hampshire says: The evil stepsister of HB 1370, HB 1569, will head to the governor’s desk sometime soon. Thank you to all who emailed, phoned, or wrote postcards urging a veto of HB 1569. If you haven’t yet, please do so now. https://www.lwv.org/local-leagues/lwv-new-hampshire

 

LBTGQ+ Rights

 

This is yet another reminder that we all need to contact the governor and demand that he veto the bills passed by the legislature that attack LBTGQ+ rights. Here is how our friends at New Futures characterize those bills:


  • Discrimination in Public Spaces: HB 396 would allow for discrimination against transgender people by banning them from using restrooms or locker rooms and participating in sports that align with their preferred gender identity. Bans such as these prohibit transgender youth from participating in typical daily activities and make them feel unwelcome in their communities, which leads to poorer mental health outcomes.

  • Sports Ban for Transgender Girls: HB 1205 would ban transgender girls from playing on school sports teams that align with their gender identity at public middle and high schools. It is unclear how this bill would be enforced, which could lead to intrusive and damaging inquisitions on any student-athlete. 

  • Censorship in Schools: HB 1312 attempts to silence discussions of gender and sexuality in the classroom by implementing a two-week advance notice of any curriculum including those topics. When LGBTQ+ youth feel support, acceptance, and open representation within their homes, schools and communities, they have much better mental health, educational and social outcomes.

  • Restricting Access to Medical Care for Transgender Teens: HB 619, as amended, would ban gender-affirming surgery for transgender youth and prohibit doctors from referring care for transgender youth to out-of-state doctors. Transgender youth, like all youth, have the best chance to thrive when they are supported and can get the doctor-prescribed medical care they need when they need it. Gender-affirming care is evidence-based and supported by medical authorities like the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Medical Association.


Here is how to contact the governor:

Gov. Chris Sununu

603-271-2121

 

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