Why I’m running for Governor

Yesterday I announced my campaign for Governor in Manchester’s historic Mill yard. Here’s what I said —

It’s an honor to be with you here today in such an historic place.

Over a hundred and fifty years ago, this very area — the former Amoskeag Mill yard — defined innovation not just of New Hampshire but of America.

It was the textile gins in these building’s that New Hampshire’s first wave of prosperity was built.

I’m here today to announce my candidacy for Governor of our great state.

I seek this office not to oppose any person but to offer new ideas and leadership for New Hampshire’s future.

As we continue moving into this new era — a time of challenges and opportunities — we stand in a place that represents both our past and our future.

This place is testimony that no matter the challenge, our best days are ahead of us.

Since the American Revolution, our state has displayed a unique talent for economic rejuvenation — from cotton and textiles to cloud computing and start-ups.

New Hampshire has and continues to be a leading technology and manufacturing hub.

As our state heads forward into this century, we must place our full energy behind growing the innovation economy, maintaining our quality of life, and ensuring New Hampshire remains a safe and healthy place for all.

I’m running for Governor because as New Hampshire continues its transition to a 21st Century economy, we need a pragmatic, independent leader to keep our state moving forward. I offer myself as that kind of leader.

We are strongest when we come together to solve our most difficult challenges. Yesterday, the Governor and Executive Council placed aside partisan differences to say we must solve the opioid crisis.

Right now, our state has the highest per-capita rate of addiction in the country. That’s not New Hampshire. We can and must meet this scourge head-on, and we will.

I believe New Hampshire’s success in the decades to follow will be determined by the decisions we make the remainder of this decade.

My vision is clear.

First, our children must be provided with a world-class education, starting in early childhood and continuing with career-ready skills that doesn’t come with a mountain of debt.

Second, we need to foster innovation in our business community — innovation to re-position this state as an economic leader in the 21st Century.

We no longer just compete with Boston and New York for jobs — we now compete with Shanghai and New Delhi.

We also need to move forward — now — from our dependence on fossil fuels — that’s the energy of the nineteenth century.

Finally, we need to create quality jobs that allow our kids to build a family of their own right here in New Hampshire.

These are challenges we can and must meet.

Not long ago, this mill yard stood silent. The industries they housed were left behind. But through grit, determination and ingenuity, they once again boast vibrant companies.

Through our continued transformations as a state, we have not lost hold of the fundamental values New Hampshire was founded upon: the freedom to choose ones own destiny and the promise that if you work hard and play by the rules, you will be given the opportunity to succeed.

I have spent most of my life here, and my love for New Hampshire is why I am running for governor.

My story is not unqiue. I was not raised in privilege. My parents divorced when I was five years old, and I was raised by a single mother who worked as a secretary. I know what it’s like to be lost, left behind and left out.

At certain critical junctures in my life, others stood up for me and made a difference. I would not be here today if it wasn’t for others who helped me stand.

I believe now is the time for me to stand up for our state and fight for those who struggle, those left behind and those who have no voice. I will be their voice.

When I served as Deputy Secretary of State and Director of Securities Regulation for New Hampshire, I witnessed first-hand what happens when families are left to battle big banks and greedy companies.

But we did not stand idly by. We did not follow; we led. We were one of the first regulators in the country to address the breakdown of good corporate values in America. We stood up to a New Hampshire company, Tyco Corporation, and said, No — No to greed, No to unfairness, and No to deceptive behavior.

We then took on special interests and fraud wherever we found it. Our small but determined agency fought for hard-working New Hampshire families — including many of our most vulnerable citizens — and protected their savings, their well-being, as well as their fundamental belief in the fairness of America.

Heading up the Securities Bureau was the most rewarding experience of my life. I now want to return to state government to help make it work for everyone.

New Hampshire is a wonderful place. It’s one of natural beauty. A healthy state — one consistently recognized as the best place in America to raise a family.

But we have challenges before us. More than six years after the end of the Great Recession, too many families continue to struggle.

And At a time when many of our young people are forced to leave the state, many businesses have difficulty recruiting a skilled workforce, particularly in rural New Hampshire.

Our roads and infrastructure are better suited to 1960 than 2015.

These are some of the real problems now happening in a place we all love and call home.

The real question before us is this: can we come together to turn these challenges into opportunities?

Can we take New Hampshire to the next level?

This city and this Mill yard proves we can get our economic engine firing on all cylinders.

We can and must keep our young people engaged and employed in our state.

We can and must embrace renewable energy and move away from this state’s dependence on fossil fuels.

We can and must have passenger rail service to this city, and I will offer ideas how to get this done. It’s time for action and not words. We need to roll up our sleeves and have a transportation system that meets the needs of the 2lst century.

And we will end the epidemic of addiction that is so senselessly stealing lives away from us.

Over the next several months, I will be discussing with you how to make a great state an even better place. I welcome your thoughts and ideas.

I have lived here most of my life. Honest, pragmatic leadership is what we seek and what I believe in.

I present myself as who I am: a consensus voice for an independent New Hampshire — someone who understands both the private and public sectors and who also offers leadership experience in our state government.

I would like to end by quoting a New Hampshire original, Robert Frost. In his book, “New Hampshire,” published in 1923, he wrote:

Sea Waves Are Green and Wet,
But Up From Where They Die,
Rise Others Vaster Yet.

New Hampshire, we can be vaster yet.

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