Dembocratic Governor John Lynch of New Hampshire, a staunch abortion advocate, announced today he would not seek reelection in 2012. News of Lynch’s decision comes just days after earth-shattering Republican victories in special elections in New York and Nevada.
While Lynch enjoys comfortable favorability, President Obama and other Democrats are increasingly falling out of favor with New Hampshire voters. Lynch won his fourth term in 2010 earning 53% of the vote, despite Republicans winning the State House, State Senate and a US Senate seat. (Unlike most states, NH Governors serve two-year terms.)
With President Obama at the top of the Democratic ticket in 2012, Lynch’s reelection prospects would have been tenuous at best. Now a wide-open race, the New Hampshire governor race will become one of the races to watch in 2012. It could be a very important pick up for pro-life advocates. Electing a pro-life governor would open the door to passing life-saving pro-life legislation in the state.
Throughout his time in office, Gov. Lynch has worked tremendously hard to thwart the efforts of pro-life advocates. In 2007, he signed a bill repealing New Hampshire’s parental notification law.
However, in 2011 with Republicans controlling both chambers of the legislature, passed a new version of the statute with even stronger mechanisms to ensure enforcement. Despite enormous support by members of the House and Senate and numerous polls indicating public approval of parental notification, Lynch vetoed the bill. NARAL Pro-Choice New Hampshire praised Lynch for the move.
The bill then returned to the Legislature, which successfully overrode Lynch’s veto. (The House overrode the veto by a 266-102 vote; the Senate vote was 17-7) Over 40 states have parental involvement laws, which have been proven to be constitutional, a point even generally pro-abortion Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor affirmed. “States unquestionably have the right to require parental involvement when a minor considers terminating her pregnancy,” Justice O’Connor wrote.
Just this week after the New Hampshire Executive Council voided a contract with Planned Parenthood, which allocated state taxpayer funds to the abortion business, Lynch welcomed the intervention of President Obama and HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.
Marjorie Dannenfelser of the Susan B. Anthony List told LifeNews.com, “Instead of honoring the decision of New Hampshire’s Executive Council, Obama has once again allowed his unwavering support for the largest provider of abortions in our country to take precedent. The people of New Hampshire deserve to have the representatives they elected make the decisions they were elected to make without fear of President Obama usurping those decisions to curry favor with his political ally – Planned Parenthood.”
Gov. Lynch made this statement on the Obama Administration forcing taxpayers to fund Planned Parenthood; “These are important health services for women, and it’s a good thing they’re available again here in New Hampshire.”
Call it political savvy or cowardice, Lynch’s decision to forgo a reelection campaign, is great news for the pro-life movement.
A number of pro-life Republicans could enter the race including former US Senate candidate Ovide Lamontagne, former US Senator John Sununu and 2010 GOP gubernatorial nominee John Stephen. State Senate Majority Leader Jeb Bradley is also considering the race.
Democrats who have openly considered bids even prior to Lynch’s announcement include former state director of the Bureau of Securities Regulation Mark Connolly, former state Senate Majority leader Maggie Hassan and 2008 Senate candidate Steve Marchand.