MANCHESTER – In a conference call with reporters today, former U.S. Senator Warren Rudman discussed what is at stake for New Hampshire families in the upcoming election, and why John Sununu is the only candidate who can address the biggest economic crisis in a generation and hold the line on spending. Rudman, a well respected bipartisan statesman and co-founder of the Concord Coalition, praised Senator Sununu’s vote for the economic rescue bill and record of accomplishment in the Congress.

“I have followed John Sununu’s career very closely when he was in the House, as well as encouraged him to run for the Senate, and I can only say that he is one who has been willing to be independent, to cast very tough votes and stand up for what’s right for the country and what’s right for the people of New Hampshire,” said Senator Rudman.

In praising John Sununu’s leadership on the economy, Senator Rudman cited his early calls for greater oversight of our financial markets and proposals to reign in mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. In 2003, and again in 2005 and 2007, Senator Sununu introduced legislation to strengthen regulations for Fannie and Freddie, because he understood the threats they posed to the integrity of our financial system. In 2006, he also introduced the National Insurance Act to establish a federal role in the oversight and regulation of insurance markets and firms like AIG. That year, he also supported the Credit Rating Agency Reform Act, which passed the U.S. Senate, to protect investors, taxpayers and the public interest by fostering accountability, transparency, and competition in the credit rating industry.

Senator Rudman also commended Senator Sununu’s decision to vote in favor of the economic recovery legislation, because New Hampshire families would have been devastated by a severe credit crunch if Congress failed to address the turmoil in our financial markets.

“It wasn’t an easy vote but it was the right vote,” said Senator Rudman. “To vote no is to essentially put your head in the sand and say we will let all of these financial institutions fail. There is no question it would have had a ripple effect across the entire economy,” said Senator Rudman. “You couldn’t vote against that bill and look a constituent in the face who can’t get a car loan, has their credit card limits reduced, can’t get a mortgage loan, small companies can’t borrow credit to make payrolls and say it was the right vote. It would have totally been the wrong vote.”

Rudman also criticized Jeanne Shaheen for her failure to solve New Hampshire’s school funding crisis, the biggest issue that came up during her administration, and her support for the bloated $300 billion Farm Bill. Senator Sununu was one of only 15 senators to vote against the legislation because it was loaded with pork barrel spending and unnecessary tax breaks for big agribusiness.

“Anybody from New Hampshire who could vote for that Farm Bill – that’s just an abomination,” said Senator Rudman.

During his first term in the Senate John Sununu has consistently stood up for taxpayers and opposed wasteful government spending. He opposed the 2003 and 2005 energy bills which were loaded with unnecessary tax subsidies to oil companies, and included other reckless spending. He was also one of only 15 senators to stand up and vote against the infamous “Bridge to Nowhere,” and he has called for a one year moratorium of wasteful earmarks that would have prohibited Congress from funding similar pork barrel projects.