As the state representative for Ward 1 here in Keene, I believe the majority of my constituents, and the city of Keene over all, prefer candidates with liberal and progressive values. Electing me and an all Democratic delegation to the Statehouse is evidence of that and I’ve remained committed to those values in Concord. While I understand that municipal elections are supposed to be nonpartisan and I appreciate the intention behind it, I believe we need to look at what the candidates’ voting records and public comments have to say about their values and where they are politically.
The mayoral race has two candidates, both city councilors with voting records and public commentary that point to where their values lay on the political spectrum. Looking at three examples where Mitch Greenwald and George Hansel presented themselves differently will illustrate clearly that one of them is closer in line with Keene’s left of center values and better-suited to be Keene’s next mayor. Spoiler alert … It’s Mitch.
First, Gov. Sununu’s record 57 obstructionist vetoes. Mitch wrote a letter to the editor condemning all of his vetoes, including of the budget that included property tax relief to Keene, as well as his egregious attacks on measures that are pro-environment and pro-democracy (specifically his veto of an independent redistricting commission). George also wrote a letter to the editor, but only supported overriding two vetoes on good, pro-environment bills.
Second, net neutrality. In January of last year the City Council voted to send a nonbinding resolution to the New Hampshire congressional delegation opposing the federal government’s repeal of the net neutrality regulations. Mitch voted in favor of sending a message supporting the protection of Internet users to our representatives and senators in D.C. George voted against it.
Third, minimum wage increase. Mitch supports a minimum wage increase to $15, whereas George advocated against raising the minimum wage at all when he ran for state representative.
There are other instances where their liberal and conservative values are contrasted, such as the City Council vote on a resolution on immigration enforcement, and I think they all illustrate why Mitch Greenwald better represents the values of Keene than George Hansel and why Mitch is getting my vote.
15 Harrison St., No. 1
(This writer, a Democrat, represents Keene’s Ward 1 in the N.H. House.)