Letter: We need a new leader in secretary of state’s office

Published: 12/3/2018 12:01:07 AM

As the race for secretary of state heats up, you may have seen a letter released by former governors supporting the incumbent, Bill Gardner. It is an interesting choice to tout your endorsements from mostly Republican leaders of the past, especially considering the issues of recent years.

While Secretary Gardner has served New Hampshire honorably, his record on voting rights is pathetic. He lacks the basic accountability necessary to run a government office, is in favor of laws that suppress the student vote and is unwilling to modernize. Modernization is not simply updating the website, which is badly needed, it is also making it easier for entrepreneurs to create new businesses across the state.

For example, a new business must file separate paperwork and obtain different ID numbers from various agencies like Revenue, Labor and Environmental Services. We need to coordinate new registrations across state agencies, and make it easier for growth in our state. We need to digitize correspondence in the office, and make it easier for candidates to file financial statements.

As a former state representative, I know how difficult interacting with the secretary of state’s office can be. We need a leader willing to take ownership of both successes and failures. Secretary Gardner continues to make crucial mistakes around voter suppression laws and the vital role of his office. We must demand more.



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