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Final Gubernatorial Debate Highlights Differences In Leadership Style, Economic Plans

Sara Plourde

  Republican gubernatorial hopefuls Walt Havenstein and Andrew Hemingway held their last debate Friday. They differed on how they say they would lead and improve the state’s business climate.

Political activist and serial entrepreneur Andrew Hemingway, when asked how his business experience would inform his style of governance, said New Hampshire is a small-business state.

“We do not need more big business voice in concord. We need the voice of the mechanic that I met in Merrimack just a few weeks ago who said ‘I can’t get to Concord to testify. I can’t get to Concord. I don’t feel like I have any representation.’ I will represent the voice of the small business owner. ”

Conversely, former billion-dollar defense contractor CEO, Walt Havenstein said his executive experience makes him uniquely suited to preside in the corner office.

“The Governor of our state is the chief executive officer of our state. And the state bureaucracy, the state machinery is a big business in one sense. And the ability to lead in that bigger sense is very, very important.”

When Havenstein said his plan would bring the state’s economy back to where it was 15 years ago, Hemingway argued that the economy of the past is never returning. Hemingway also differed with Havenstein by saying he’s against abortion and that the state’s Medicaid expansion law should be repealed.

Before becoming a reporter for NHPR, Ryan devoted many months interning with The Exchange team, helping to produce their daily talk show. He graduated from the University of New Hampshire in Manchester with a major in Politics and Society and a minor in Communication Arts. While in school, he also interned for a DC-based think tank. His interests include science fiction and international relations. Ryan is a life-long Manchester resident.
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