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NH News

Sununu To Again Nominate MacDonald for Chief Justice Position

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Jack Rodolico/NHPR
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Gov. Chris Sununu announced Wednesday that he will re-nominate Attorney General Gordon MacDonald to serve as the next Chief Justice of the state Supreme Court.

MacDonald was previously nominated for the job by Sununu in 2019, but Democrats who controlled the majority on the Executive Council at that time blocked his appointment, citing concerns about his previous work in Republican politics, his position on abortion rights, and his lack of judicial experience.

Sununu has left the chief justice seat vacant since then, declining to bring forward another nominee.

In November’s elections, Republicans won a 4-1 majority on the Executive Council, making MacDonald’s nomination much more likely this time.

"Gordon has served this State with distinction as Attorney General for the last four years, and I am honored to nominate him to lead our State's highest court," Sununu said in a statement. "From suing polluters to leading the fight against Massachusetts’ unconstitutional taxation of our citizens in the United States Supreme Court, Gordon has never been afraid to take the action that he believes is right, even when that course may not be the easiest. Our Department of Justice has continued to thrive under Gordon’s leadership and I am confident that, if confirmed, Gordon will lead our Judicial Branch with distinction.”

If confirmed, MacDonald will take a seat left vacant by the retirement of former Chief Justice Robert Lynn, who was elected to the New Hampshire House of Representatives in November. 

“I am grateful to Governor Sununu for the confidence he has placed in me and for the prospective opportunity to serve the people of New Hampshire in this extraordinarily important role,” said MacDonald in a statement.

MacDonald previously worked in private legal practice, and served as chief of staff for former Republican U.S. Senator Gordon Humphrey.

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