By Representative Andy Renzullo (R-Hudson-Litchfield-Pelham)
Be careful what you wish for, you might just get it. Four years ago the voters wanted change. In 2006, the Democrat party took control of both houses of the New Hampshire Legislature to add to their control of the Governor’s office. Like riding with a teenager sporting a new muscle car, it was pedal-to-the-metal and the New Hampshire House took a screeching left turn. Some things were comical, like the bill passed by the House (and killed by the Senate after much public ridicule) which would have made it a criminal offense to release a helium-filled balloon. Other things were profound, like denying parents the right to be notified when their minor child is given an abortion. New Hampshire citizens are very tolerant. However, they also treasure their traditional values and control of their own lives.
In the last election, the Democrat House majority was cut by 17 seats even tough the Democrats swept the federal elections. Why? Because voters were becoming alarmed by the profligate spending and social engineering. Sensing the peasants with the pitchforks may be catching up to them, they’ve pulled out all the stops in trying to steamroll their hard left agenda into law before voters speak again. Let’s pick 2 recent bills.
The biggest news is the passing of a Gay Marriage Bill by the New Hampshire House. While New Hampshire Democrat House leadership had told the press that Gay Marriage was a vote of “conscience,” the pressure brought to bear on dissident members whose “conscience” vote didn’t match the “conscience” vote of Democrat leadership was immense. After the bill was defeated on the first vote, several wayward representatives suddenly found “enlightenment” and changed their vote to allow passage. The rumor that additional splints and arm slings had to be rushed to the House nurse’s office to treat the many cases of “twisted arm syndrome” could not be verified.
The drive to make New Hampshire into San Francisco East didn’t stop at gay marriage. On that same day the House defeated, on a close vote, a transgender protection bill, colloquially referred to by opponents as the “bathroom bill”. While adding people who behave, act or appear as the opposite sex to the list of groups given special protection in the New Hampshire civil rights statutes, this confusing and poorly written bill became the poster child of political correctness run amok. While denied by proponents, there was real concern that a person, incurring a sexual identity crisis, could actually be afforded the right to access facilities that are restricted to members of the opposite sex, to wit: bathrooms and locker rooms - hence the term “Bathroom Bill.” Seeing that arm twisting tactics worked on the gay marriage bill, the social architects dragooned a 92 year-old representative who didn’t vote “correctly” to request reconsideration of the vote. And the arm twisting worked. After a 4-hour debate, the “bathroom bill” passed by one vote, but not before House Speaker Terie Norelli made an impassioned speech to rally her troops. Oh, and by the way, the extreme left majority in the House defeated an amendment that would have protected bathrooms! So it really is the “bathroom bill..”
Now it’s possible that some may agree with some of these actions by those in charge of the New Hampshire House. But, I dare say, few would argue that those in power in Concord have an agenda far more radical and different than New Hampshire’s traditional values. Even if the Senate kills these bills or the Governor vetoes them, does the New Hampshire House really reflect the attitudes and values of New Hampshire’s citizens? When you think of New Hampshire the movie image that comes to mind should be “On Golden Pond,” not “The Rocky Horror Picture Show.” Well, four years ago the voters wished for change. Be careful what you wish for, you might just get it. Be careful what you wish for, you might just regret it.