“As a proponent of smart, clean energy and as a resident of southern New Hampshire, I was pleased to see that Kinder Morgan has decided to suspend its pipeline project indefinitely. This was a win for our communities and for the health of our state’s environment. I would like to thank everyone involved in the fight against this pipeline over the past several months, and in particular the grassroots activists who brought this issue to public officials’ and the media’s attention.”
Friday, March 4, 2016
Gilmour to run for state Senate seat
By CHRIS GAROFOLO
NASHUA – Former state Sen. Peggy Gilmour informally announced Thursday that she will run for her old seat in the Legislature this fall.
Gilmour, a Hollis Democrat, has twice served in the chamber before she lost in 2014 to Republican Kevin Avard, who defeated her in a midterm election where the GOP dominated races in the state.
The Senate District 12 includes Wards 1, 2 and 5 in Nashua, as well as Brookline, Greenville, Hollis, Mason, New Ipswich and Rindge.
“I did represent that district in the past, and I worked very hard to try and understand the issues particularly that related to state government that impacted those communities,” Gilmour said.
“I feel strongly that we need good, sensible voices in our government, and I think sometimes that’s missing,” she added. “I think we all have a responsibility for good and representative government.”
A registered nurse, Gilmour previously served as vice chairwoman of both the Senate Health and Human Services Committee and Transportation Committee. She also spent time on the Ways and Means Committee, touting her leadership in reforming New Hampshire’s health care system, establishing a small business tax credit and advocating for new domestic violence laws.
“I noticed that someone with my background was not any longer in the senate. I was really the one who carried the health care background pretty exclusively, and that’s gone,” she said. “And there certainly are a lot of important issues around health care that continue to come before the Legislature.”
Gilmour was elected in 2008, ousted in 2010 by Republican Sen. Jim Luther, but defeated him in a 2012 rematch. In a closely watched race in a Republican-leaning district, Avard upset the Democrat by a 10,839 to 10,517 margin, according to the New Hampshire Secretary of State’s office.
While Gilmour handily won in her hometown of Hollis and all three Nashua wards, Avard doubled her votes in New Ipswich and Rindge. She attributed the 2014 loss in part to the district’s redistricting that added more conservative towns.
Avard, a former city councilor in Franklin in 2000, first entered the Legislature in 2010 and ran for the state senate four years later. He serves on the Senate Education Committee and the Health and Human Services Committee this legislative session.
“I’m already campaigning. We’ve been off and running and talking to people; I’m very enthused about this race,” Avard said, citing a bipartisan record that included his bill to suspend the state’s death penalty.
“I think I’ve lived up to all my promises that I campaigned on – giving people a voice … giving people at least options on Common Core,” he said. “I’m very eager to continue serving in this office.”
Said Gilmour: “I think we are very, very different in our outlook on things and how we view the role of communities in education and health care.”
Nashua Telegraph Editorial
“It’s not difficult to understand why Nashua’s Kevin Avard failed to win re-election to the New Hampshire’s House of Representatives two years ago after being swept into office during the 2010 Republican landslide that propelled House Speaker Bill O’Brien into power – and eventual infamy.
Under O’Brien’s tutelage, Avard marked his political territory by voting to repeal the state’s same-sex marriage law and supporting legislation to allow individuals and businesses to deny services to gay couples.
Avard kept perfect time with the GOP leadership’s effort to disembowel New Hampshire’s judiciary by voting for state judges to be commissioned for renewable seven-year terms and to exempt legislative acts from judicial review.
And when O’Brien attempted to grease the wheels to allow Cancer Treatment Centers of America to set up shop in New Hampshire, Avard backed legislation that would have exempted destination specialty hospitals from the state’s certificate of need process while allowing them to be excused from paying the Medicaid enhancement tax.
Avard believes that stellar record deserves a promotion, and so he’s seeking the New Hampshire Senate District 12 seat held by Democratic incumbent Peggy Gilmour. In contrast, Gilmour has a legislative record worthy of praise.
Gilmour co-sponsored legislation to bar discrimination based on sexual orientation that cleared the Senate. She co-sponsored a new law that requires insurers to allow people to purchase 90-day supplies of prescription drugs at the pharmacy of their choice. She co- sponsored improvements to the state’s pay equity law. She co-sponsored a new law establishing a senior citizens bill of rights. We could go on.
There’s a pattern here. On one hand is a former legislator with a record of limiting human rights, undermining the constitutional principle of separation of powers, and enabling political cronyism. On the other hand is a sitting legislator with a record of supporting human rights for all, improving the lives of health care patients and seniors, and reaching across the political aisle to forge bipartisan solutions.
Peggy Gilmour is the slam-dunk choice for New Hampshire Senate District 12.”
..there’s nothing like it, and I feel so fortunate to represent Senate District 12. Our beautiful surroundings and active community truly is the best in the state! I got to see much of the district this past weekend, and to witness everything that makes New Hampshire great. From Nashua block parties, to the opening of the new D.O.G. park, to Hollis and Mason Old Home Days – it was wonderful to see so many of you involved!
The past few weeks have been as high-paced as ever as the newly elected legislators gear up for the 2012-2014 biennium. But I wanted to take a moment to tell you about what’s been going on in Concord.
At Organization Day on December 5th, New Hampshire’s new State Senators and Representatives were sworn in by outgoing Governor Lynch – he will be dearly missed, but we are excited to welcome Governor-Elect Maggie Hassan to the corner office.