CONCORD – Following a series of three recent resignations that had dropped the their majority in the New Hampshire House of Representatives to 293 members, Republicans have regained a seat with the return to their caucus of Fred Leonard (R-Rochester).
In a formal letter to Speaker William O'Brien, Leonard, who had left the party in January and registered as an Independent, indicated that he was rejoining the caucus following a period of deep reflection. "I understand that we can't always have what we want and it's important to pick the side that best fits our beliefs, so I am going to re-engage and do the best I can to help make a difference. I am proud to be a conservative and to be a small part in helping the people and businesses of New Hamsphire," said Leonard.
House Majority Leader D.J. Bettencourt was happy to welcome Rep. Leonard back to the fold. "Fred has always been a strong conservative voice within our caucus. I respected his reasoning for leaving the caucus in January, but I am extremely happy with his decision to rejoin the cause," said Bettencourt. Leonard, a freshman representing the city of Rochester, is a member of the House Labor, Industrial and Rehabilitative Services committee.
"He has been a great asset in terms of moving our Republican agenda forward and helping us achieve important accomplishments, such as passing over 30 bills reducing regulations on N e w Hampshire businesses, making the tough decisions to fix the structural overspending in the budget and passing retirement reform all so state government can live within its means . He has also been very active in fighting for smaller government and lower taxes for many years in Rochester and that certainly fits well into our Republican Agenda," added Bettencourt.