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Aaron Gill for NH House Deering Weare

2016: In the Papers

Concord Monitor, November 3, 2016 - Candidate Profiles for Hillsborough County District 2

Concord Monitor, October 26, 2016 - Letter to the Editor by Aaron Gill Aaron Gill for State Rep

Concord Monitor, June 6, 2016 - Letter to the Editor by Aaron Gill Conversion Therapy and the Damage Done

The Messenger, August 19, 2016 - Candidate Profile

Concord Monitor, August 16, 2016 - Letter to the Editor by Aaron Gill I support Gateway to Work program

Concord Monitor, July 4, 2016 - Letter to the Editor by Aaron Gill A Better Voice


2016: Endorsements

Human Rights Campaign The Human Rights Campaign represents a force of more than 1.5 million members and supporters nationwide. As the largest national lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer civil rights organization, HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are ensured of their basic equal rights, and can be open, honest and safe at home, at work and in the community.

Aaron is the first NH House candidate ever endorsed by HRC.

Human Rights Campaign Website

Victory Fund The Victory Fund seeks to change the face and voice of America's politics and achieve equality for LGBT Americans by increasing the number of openly LGBT officials at all levels of Government. Since 1991, the Victory Fund has helped thousands of openly LGBT candidates win election to local, state and federal offices.

Victory Fund Website

Aaron Gill for NH State Rep - Victory Fund Endorsement Press Release

Victory Fund Press Release

Aaron Gill's Victory Fund Candidate Profile

Sierra Club-NH Founded by legendary conservationist John Muir in 1892, the Sierra Club is now the nation's largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization -- with more than two million members and supporters. Their successes range from protecting millions of acres of wilderness to helping pass the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, and Endangered Species Act. More recently, they've made history by leading the charge to move away from the dirty fossil fuels that cause climate disruption and toward a clean energy economy.

Aaron Gill for NH State Rep - Sierra Club Endorsement Press Release

Sierra Club-NH Website

Teamsters Local 633 Teamsters Local 633 was chartered in 1934. Since that time they have grown to over 4,700 members working in New Hampshire for several different employers. Their members work in such fields as Anheuser-Busch brewery workers, UPS, warehouse, freight drivers, police departments,correctional officers, court security officers, public works employees, several municipalities, airport maintenance, school principals, concrete drivers, pipeline workers, bus drivers, sheriffs' deputies and dispatchers, race track employees, power plant and beer distribution workers.

Teamsters Local 633 Website

NH AFL-CIO The New Hampshire AFL-CIO is a diverse social justice organization that is committed to the dignity of all and united in the struggle to improve the lives of working families and our communities. As a strong statewide voice for all working people, the New Hampshire AFL-CIO brings together the unions of New Hampshire into one labor movement that fights for economic and social justice in our workplaces, and communities.

NH AFL-CIO Website

NH AFL-CIO list of endorsed candidates

AFT-NH AFT-NH represents approximately 4,000 teachers, school support staff, city and town employees, police officers, library employees, and higher education faculty. AFT-NH is a member of the New Hampshire AFL-CIO that boasts membership of over 40,000 working men and women. AFT-NH is the state affiliate for the American Federation of Teachers with more than 3,000 local affiliates nationwide, 43 state affiliates, and more than 1.3 million members.

AFT-NH Website

AFT-NH press release

SEA SEIU Local 1984 The State Employees Association represents over 10,000 public and private sector workers in New Hampshire. Their members all committed to defending and improving the services they provide. Members include the plow truck drivers who keep New Hampshire's roads safe, the nurses who care for New Hampshire's parents and grandparents in county nursing homes, at Glencliff Home, and at the Veterans' Home, the front line human services workers who keep New Hampshire's children and elderly safe from harm, and the corrections and law enforcement officers who protect New Hampshire's citizens and maintain order in state and county facilities.

SEA SEIU Local 1984 Website

SEA SEIU Local 1984 Canvass in Weare against Rep. Kurk

SEA SEIU Local 1984 List of Endorsed Candidates


2012: Endorsements

Victory Fund : Only three NH candidates endorsed

Professional Fire Fighters of New Hampshire

NH AFL-CIO

AFT-NH

NH State Employees Association: SEIU Local 1984

NH Sierra Club One of only 35 NH House candidates endorsed

NEA-NH


2012: Letters
Concord Monitor Candidate Profile November 2, 2012

Goffstown News, October 25, 2012 - Letter to the Editor by David Greiner Thank you (NH-GOP) for raising my taxes

Goffstown News, October 18, 2012 - Letter to the Editor by Aaron Gill N.H. deserves representation free from out-of-state interests

Goffstown News, October 18, 2012 - Letter to the Editor by Kemlo Aki Aaron Gill is dedicated to representing everyone

Concord Monitor, October 15, 2012 - Letter to the Editor by Don Johnson Gill is the clear choice for House

Goffstown News, October 11, 2012 - Letter to the Editor by John McCausland Vote Aaron Gill for District 39 state representative

October 11, 2012 - DLCC names Gill for State Rep campaign one of the 'most essential' state house races in the country

Goffstown News, October 4, 2012 - Letter to the Editor by Tim McKernan Oust Republicans from the House in the general election

Goffstown News, July 19, 2012 - Letter to the Editor regarding Mark Warden's voting record

Messenger, July 13, 2012 - Letter to the Editor regarding Voter ID

June 7, 2012 Press Release: Announcing Aaron's candidacy


2012: Letters to the Editor: Concord Monitor

I'd Like a Seat in the House
November 1, 2012

My name is Aaron Gill, and I'm running to be your state representative in Hillsborough County, District 39 for Deering, Goffstown and Weare.

I'm a 36 year old small business loan underwriter for a New Hampshire community bank, a conservation commission officer, property taxpayer, husband, and lover of Volkswagens, drumming, and gardening.

As you might have guessed, I'm also keen on local politics. Over the past two years, I've seen some extreme behavior coming from the people's House, and I'm quite certain these actions do not represent the character and wishes of my neighbors.

We're a pragmatic people, who understand the folly of being pennywise and pound foolish, like purposely denying Federal matching funds to fulfill a personal agenda, resulting in the downshifting of costs to property taxpayers. We also know when we've been lied to, like the House focusing on a social agenda after campaigning on a fiscal one.

By and large yes, we appreciate the value of a dollar, but we also understand education is the key to our economic future, roads and bridges are necessary for New Hampshire's robust commerce, and a fair distribution of our tax burden is only right.

We also know that government should stay out of our bedrooms, our bodies, and our personal relationships.

If you're unhappy with the actions of your State Representatives, please vote for fresh voices. I'd love your vote. For more information on my campaign, please visit NHGill.com. Thank you.

AARON GILL
Deering

Right-to-Work is Wrong for NH
September 21, 2012

The Taft-Hartley Act of 1947 outlawed the requirement of union membership as a condition of employment. Yet that's what proponents of the so-called right-to-work legislation claim to be stopping. So what is the point of right-to-work?

A May 2011 U.S. Dept of Labor study revealed that workers in states with right-to-work laws are paid 9.4 percent less than states without them. It appears lower wages is the point behind right-to-work, so why would New Hampshire ask for that?

Simple: New Hampshire didn't ask for it. House Bill 474, the primary right-to-work legislation offered in the O'Brien House, was substantially written by ALEC, an extremely partisan Washington-based special interest group funded by the Koch Brothers and other large corporations.

How did ALEC's model legislation get into the New Hampshire House? Simple: Several state representatives are in its circle. For example, Free Stater Mark Warden asked New Hampshire taxpayers to reimburse him $300 for attending an ALEC conference in December 2010. Warden voted for right-to-work in the last session and recently stated that passing right-to-work is one of his top priorities.

New Hampshire doesn't need out-of-staters telling us what to do. Warden's Free State ideology and ALEC's right-to-work legislation are wrong for New Hampshire. That's why I'm running against Warden for state representative in Deering, Goffstown and Weare.

AARON GILL
Deering

Women's Health Isn't a Partisan Issue
August 26, 2012

Women's services are not a partisan issue.

Title X, which provides for public support of family planning services, was signed into law by Republican President Richard Nixon, with the intended purpose of promoting healthy, stable families by allowing individuals to decide when to have children. These commonsense prevention services have several additional societal benefits. In May 2010, the Guttmacher Institute released a report indicating for every $1 spent on family planning, taxpayers save $3.74. Additionally, by reducing unwanted pregnancies, family planning services help reduce abortions. These benefits reflect traditional conservativism, made possible in a bill signed by a Republican president.

In 1998, 120 Republicans and 121 Democrats passed SB 175, ensuring equal access to contraception in health plans offered by all employers throughout New Hampshire. This bipartisan bill encountered no arguments from religious organizations.

Despite the benefits to conservative ideals, and wide bipartisan support over many decades, New Hampshire House Republicans, in concert with their federal counterparts, have recently sought to restrict funding for family planning services (HB 228), to allow religious institutions to deny contraceptive coverage (HB 1546), and to require doctors to provide false and misleading information to women (HB 1659).

It's time the New Hampshire values of decency, civility and common sense return to Concord. The actions of the House Republican majority do not reflect the values of most New Hampshire citizens. Like many of you, I support equal access to women's services, and that's why I'm running for state representative for Deering, Goffstown and Weare.

AARON GILL
Deering

I Support Education
August 6, 2012

New Hampshire's public schools are performing well. According to NAEP assessments, we have the highest proportion of proficient or advanced students in the country. Additionally, New Hampshire is the top performing NECAP-tested state in most categories. No doubt, we've been providing our children a quality education.

So why did Republicans in the New Hampshire House spend the past two years attacking our schools? The first step was weakening public education. House Bill 595 was an attempt to eliminate compulsory school attendance. HB 631 would have eliminated universal kindergarten. HB 429 attempted to lower the dropout age. HB 542 allows parents to object to material, even if it's factual, and requires the school to develop a special curriculum for their child.

The next step was de-funding public schools. HB 340 was a tax abatement for parents of children in private school. HB 1 cut state college and university support by 48 percent, even though New Hampshire already ranked last in such support. HB 1607 yanks $130 million from public schools over the next 10 years and effectively gives your tax money to private or religious schools instead.

Let's not forget the relentless denigration of teachers.

That's shameful. Public education built this country, and our teachers are sacrificing their earning potential to prepare the next generation of leaders. I am running for state representative for Deering, Goffstown and Weare because I believe in public education. I would not have supported these bills, and my opponent Rep. Mark Warden did.

AARON GILL
Deering

Free Staters go too Far
June 28, 2012

I instantly fell in love with New Hampshire when I moved here in 2002. The combination of natural beauty and frugal Yankee pragmatism got me. I'm here for life.

I moved here for work, not part of a Yale graduate student's sociology experiment. Such is the journey of Free State Project members. The group's goal is to move 20,000 libertarians to New Hampshire, get them involved in politics and change our state to their ideals.

Many are already here. Eleven known Free Staters running as Republicans were elected to the New Hampshire House in 2010. This is partly why I'm running for state representative in Deering, Goffstown and Weare. After all, we are New Hampshire and we can govern ourselves.

I'm not suggesting all Free Staters think alike, or everything they do is bad, but their adherence to libertarian ideology guides their votes and often goes too far. For example, their ideal solution for the marriage equality question was HB 569, which would have eliminated all marriages and replaced them with domestic unions.

In another example, HB1511 would have loosened restrictions on convicted felons possessing weapons. The sole sponsor of this bill was my opponent, Rep. Mark Warden, and eight of 58 favorable votes were from the 11 Free Staters.

Loosening restrictions on convicted felons possessing weapons? Eliminating all marriages? That's not New Hampshire; that's going too far. Imagine what happens when 20,000 Free Staters move here, get elected and vote!

If elected, I'll vote for New Hampshire common sense instead.

AARON GILL
Deering

Why I'm running for the House
June 12, 2012

We have high standards in New Hampshire, and we expect a lot from our citizen legislators.

We expect their personal conduct to reflect the character of New Hampshire residents, that the work of the people will be conducted openly, fairly and consistently, and that our neighbors in Concord will make independent decisions.

Most important, we expect members of the House to represent us free from the constraints of pledges, free from rigid ideology, and free from the goals of out-of-state interests.

I filed to run for state representative in Hillsborough County, District 39, covering Deering, Goffstown and Weare because Speaker Bill O'Brien's House did not meet New Hampshire's standards.

Over the past two years, we have watched the House majority leader resign after falsifying records, the closing of the House gallery to the public and Washington-written legislation pushed on New Hampshire with leadership's consent.

Some legislators are operating under a Free State Project decree to move to New Hampshire, get elected to our House of Representatives and make our state in their image.

This denigration of New Hampshire occurred under O'Brien's guidance. Beyond the shame of New Hampshire's repeated mocking in the national media, his legacy is rising property taxes, laid-off hospital workers, higher in-state tuition, and baseless attacks on public workers, teachers, unions and marriage equality.

We are New Hampshire, and we can do better. Let's bring common sense back to Concord.

AARON GILL
Deering

Shameful Rhetoric from Lawmaker
March 21, 2012

Republican Rep. David Bates of Windham doesn't like gays being married in New Hampshire. He's been on a mission for two years.

In 2010, Bates led a statewide, town meeting warrant article petition drive asking voters to define marriage on the November ballot. Bates's mini-referendum could only manage 26 percent support.

In 2011, Bates led an effort to put a constitutional amendment in the hands of voters, thus requiring a two-thirds majority to enshrine discrimination in the state Constitution. He dropped the effort in November.

Now Bates is again leading the charge to strip civil rights from our neighbors. Today, the House will debate HB 437. His amendment would subject the civil rights of gay citizens to majority rule this November.

In support of his bill, Bates is citing transmission rates of sexually transmitted diseases among gay couples, arguing the state shouldn't adopt a public policy that is dangerous to people's health. This is shameful. We expect our representatives to do better.

New Hampshire proudly supports the civil rights of all citizens. The marriage laws of this state do not infringe on anyone's rights, do not deny equal treatment under the law, and do not require Bates's attention.

I urge all representatives to vote against Bates's pet project, which continually wastes time and taxpayer money to the detriment of New Hampshire's dignity. If I were a state representative, I would.

(The writer is a candidate for the New Hampshire House.)

Tax Credit Plan Will Hurt Public Schools
February 15, 2012

Republicans in Concord are proposing a $2,500 tax credit for parents of students attending private schools through House Bill 1607. This bill will subsidize a portion of private school tuition by removing public funds from New Hampshire's schools, where our children currently receive a higher quality of education than from most other states.

This is poor policy, and I oppose this bill.

How bad are New Hampshire schools? They're not bad - they're among the best in the country. After reviewing the National Assessment of Educational Progress and New England Common Assessment Program reports, it's clear New Hampshire is one of the top performing states nationwide in nearly every category and grade level.

What would this tax credit buy? The cost of religious schooling runs $5,000-$8,000, while secular private schools can run up to $25,000. The proposed $2,500 credit will not cover the cost of tuition, let alone transportation. More than likely, the beneficiaries of this credit will be those who could afford to cover these costs without the credit in the first place - a nice tax cut indeed.

How would this affect our public schools? The likely result is a decrease in public school funding without a matching decrease in costs.

Who covers the resultant shortfall? Homeowners will give parents of private schoolchildren a tax credit by paying higher property taxes.

Why are we doing this?

I can't think of a single good reason.

(The writer is a candidate for the New Hampshire House.)

Unfair to Deering
January 14, 2012

Any way you look at it, Hillsboro and Deering are sister towns. Through the Hillsboro-Deering school system, our kids play and learn together. We buy our gas, groceries and takeout from the same businesses, we drive the same roads, and we read the same local paper - we are socially connected.

It seems logical that our representatives in Concord should represent both towns, but that's not the redistricting plan proposed by House Republicans. For the upcoming decade, the plan allocates three representatives for Deering and Weare to share, plus a floterial district with Goffstown.

Deering residents are silenced under this Republican plan, politically linked to a town whose population is four times larger, and to which no social connection exists.

The process of redistricting was retained solely by Republicans, and was not shared with Democrats or the public until the final working version was revealed. Only the few who worked on the plan know why Deering and Hillsboro were not paired together, which should have been the logical starting point.

Because of the state and federal laws ignored, this Republican redistricting plan will surely go to the courts, wasting taxpayer money the party claims to cherish.

A redistricting process where adults exchange ideas and reach compromises best suited to the reality of each town's social connections, by obtaining input from all possible sources, while fulfilling state and federal requirements - without a court order - isn't too much to ask from our elected representatives.

GOP Should Support Repeal
December 12, 2011

Republicans should support repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act based on two conservative principles:

1. States' rights. Republicans have championed the 10th Amendment for decades. The 2008 national GOP platform specifically quotes the 10th Amendment, mainstream Republican politicians like Rick Perry outwardly advocate states' rights, and even Speaker Bill O'Brien believes in nullification.

DOMA violates the 10th Amendment by ignoring any state definition of marriage that conflicts with the federal DOMA definition.

(Despite this, Speaker John Boehner has pledged up to $1.5 million in taxpayer money to defend DOMA.)

2. Job-killing regulation. Republicans love to attack Democrats for this. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor released his top 10 "job-killing regulations" list in August, Romney's economic plan centers on reducing regulations, and O'Brien this year called the minimum wage "job-killing regulation."

DOMA requires employers to bear the cost and administrative burden of treating same-sex, married employees differently from straight, married employees, as many federal benefits rely on marital status. DOMA creates a two-tiered system of haves and have-nots, which requires lengthy calculations and expensive tax implications for employees.

Additionally, all Americans believe in a core principle, enshrined forever in the fabric of America by Thomas Jefferson, that "all men are created equal."

I encourage New Hampshire Republicans to contact Sen. Kelly Ayotte and tell her you support the Respect for Marriage Act, co-sponsored by Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, which repeals DOMA, restores states' rights and reduces regulatory burdens on employers. It's the right thing to do.

Tax System is Hurting New Hampshire Students
October 11, 2011

A small but vocal group of me-first residents consistently threatens the progress of the Hillsboro-Deering school system because the education of our children is tied to their property taxes.

The miniscule short-term benefit of blindly chopping a school budget by $1 million to 2 million, or denying modest changes to teachers contracts, erodes the desire of many qualified educators to work here and undermines the success of the school's turnaround plan.

You cannot expect exceptional teachers to stay in an environment dominated by continuously threatened pay cuts and public attacks on their character.

Our children's futures shouldn't be punished because of the way we have chosen to fund public education: a system of poor incentives creating angry mobs of shortsighted ne'er-do-wells storming school budget hearings and throwing temper tantrums to save a few bucks on their property taxes.

This is not the way to ensure the future economic strength of our state, yet we continue to allow the uninformed and disinterested to make educational decisions based on a tax bill.

It's time for Concord to comply with the Claremont decision.

If high property taxes upset you so much that you've chosen to destroy our children's education, please focus your anger on New Hampshire's regressive tax structure instead.

It provides the wealthy with lower tax rates at the expense of the working class, creating a caustic environment with poor incentives for the less affluent school districts.

Federal legislation remedies inequity
March 22, 2011

I am writing to thank Sen. Jeanne Shaheen for cosponsoring the Respect for Marriage Act of 2011, to ask Sen. Kelly Ayotte to support it, and to ask Reps. Frank Guinta and Charlie Bass for their support once passed to the House.

My husband and I, New Hampshire residents and citizens of the United States, were married in Toronto during 2007. Our marriage is valid and recognized in our home state, yet because of the Defense of Marriage Act, our marriage is neither valid nor recognized by the federal government. Because of this 10th Amendment violation, we are denied various benefits available to our heterosexual counterparts including joint tax filing, access to Social Security benefits, and tax-free estate passage. Most egregiously, we are relegated to second-class status. The Respect for Marriage Act of 2011 remedies this inequity.

While I do not advocate public voting on civil rights, I would like to remind our representatives of the support New Hampshire's citizens have shown for marriage equality. On Feb. 17, hearings were held by the House in Concord to repeal marriage equality through three separate bills. That day, supporters of equality, per the committee sign-in sheet, outnumbered supporters of those bills by a 13-1 margin. New Hampshire's overwhelmingly passionate support is unquestionable.

I am asking my Republican representatives in Washington to rise above politics and defy their party in support of this legislation and their constituents. Provide equal access to the pursuit of happiness: Support the Respect for Marriage Act of 2011.

No Marriage for Anyone?
February 16, 2011

Elected Republicans in Concord have proposed eliminating all marriages - not just same-sex marriages - and replacing them with domestic unions in House Bill 569.

Over the past few years, Republicans argued that allowing gays to marry would somehow harm to the institution of marriage. Now, Republicans are actually trying to destroy New Hampshire marriages.

The world we live in today: "Mom, Dad - my boyfriend and I are getting married!"

The Republican vision of tomorrow: "Mom, Dad - my boyfriend and I are signing a contractual obligation at the town hall!"

Is the thought of two men being married together so horrible, so terrible, so world-crushing that New Hampshire Republican leaders would rather strip marriage from every New Hampshire citizen than continue to allow gays to marry?

New Hampshire marriage law as it stands harms no one, yet provides equal access for consenting adults.

Thanks to Gov. John Lynch, religious institutions are not forced to perform a marriage they disagree with. There is nothing here to change, fix or waste taxpayer money discussing further.

Call or write your elected representatives and tell them to stop wasting time and taxpayer money trying to strip civil rights from New Hampshire citizens and to focus on job growth and balancing the budget instead.

Schoolteachers Deserve Respect
January 23, 2011

Americans should respect teachers. Their responsibility to educate the population and enable the next generation of leaders and innovators insists on cultural deference. Yet many publicly slander the profession by questioning their motives and insisting they are overpaid. The current catchphrase is "part-time work with full-time benefits." I can't think of an accusation more ignorant or denigrating.

Educating requires a tremendous amount of work outside the classroom including planning, evaluating, grading, meeting with parents, and endless professional development. Any teacher trying to work only during classroom hours would be woefully unprepared, fall behind and immediately become an ineffective educator. Teaching is like cramming 12-months of work into a nine-month period.

Let's not forget what happens in the classroom, where a teacher will often be called on to be a counselor, mediator, coach, police officer and mother figure. They break up fights, get yelled at by kids and get threatened by parents. They are forced to defend what meager salary they are provided compared to their level of education, and are subjected to public voting on their contracts. It's exhausting, stressful, and demeaning.

I don't have children, though someday we will adopt. As a parent, I will respect and support those who have dedicated their lives, and sacrificed their earning potential, to educate my child, my neighbors children, and the future of this country. We are all beneficiaries of an educated citizenry.

There is no honor in denigrating education professionals.

Voter Suppression
December 10, 2010

Tea Party Nation President Judson Phillips recently stated that voting rights should be restricted to property owners, which would leave non-property-owning taxpayers without a voice in the representative democracy they help pay for and young service members without a voice in the country they help protect with their non-property-owning lives.

This is another example in a rich conservative tradition of voter suppression. Most notably, in this past election, Republicans ran ads in Nevada telling Hispanics "Don't vote." And in 2002, New Hampshire was home to a GOP-funded phone-jamming scandal. History reminds us of literacy tests and poll taxes. Current tactics include under-staffing polling places in poor areas to ensure long lines and enacting photo ID laws, which disproportionately affect minority and elderly voters who may not routinely keep such IDs.

This is a collective group of Americans who recently appear desperately attached to the founding fathers and personal liberty. I do not understand why these same conservatives think it's acceptable to engage in voter suppression in direct contradiction of the founders' belief in a government of the people.

We Live in a Great State
October 11, 2010

New Hampshire has the fourth lowest unemployment rate at 5.7 percent - lower than 5.8 percent in January 2008, and down from 7.7 percent in February 2010. This may have something to do with our wide array of business activity including manufacturing, financial services, and green energy initiatives.

Perhaps our high rate of employment is related to our high rate of education? According to the U.S. Census, 32.5 percent of New Hampshire citizens have obtained a bachelor degree or higher - ninth in the country.

According to the Tax Foundation, New Hampshire has the 5th lowest overall tax burden as a percentage of state income at 7.6 percent. Perhaps this is because our state politicians are not career politicians, due to a small stipend rather than a living salary. Perhaps this is because the majority of the state's income is tied to one tax, rather than imposing income or sales taxes.

In New Hampshire, we live and let live. We live in the first state to provide marriage equality without a court order and did so while protecting religious institutions.

Additionally, New Hampshire boasts beautiful scenery with the changing of the leaves - especially in our state parks and mountain regions.

Please remember when voting for your local representatives that New Hampshire is outperforming most other states. Low unemployment, low taxes, equal rights, high levels of education and beautiful scenery: What a great time to live in New Hampshire.

Why I Don't Vote Republican
September 23, 2010

America is the world standard for equality and opportunity. Our actions are watched by all as examples of what is right, just and guaranteed by our dynamic Constitution. It is these principles that American soldiers have fought for and died to protect - for centuries. It is within this context that the actions of all 41 Republican senators on Sept. 21 are distinctly un-American.

The GOP unanimously voted to block debate on a bill to repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," which denies gay and lesbian American citizens the opportunity to serve their country openly, as they are able to do in many other industrialized nations with honor, and without incident. What message do the actions of these Republican senators, including Judd Gregg, send to the rest of the world?

I have not and will not vote Republican, precisely because the GOP seems to think denying equal rights to minorities is acceptable.