Governor’s Casino Revenue Gamble Faces Skepticism From Her Own Party

Concord, NH – As Governor Hassan prepares to testify today on gambling legislation, her irresponsible casino licensing revenue scheme is facing increasing criticism from members of her own party.

“Governor Hassan is constructing a fiscally irresponsible house of cards that could collapse at any moment. She is basing New Hampshire’s financial integrity on a non-existent source of revenue that is even facing opposition from members of her own party,” said NHGOP Chairman Jennifer Horn. “If Governor Hassan is having difficulty convincing Democrats to support her disastrous budget, then its time for her to come up with a ‘Plan B.’” Granite Staters deserved to know how their governor will address the $80 million deficit that could result from her failed leadership and fiscal irresponsibility.”

Since Governor Hassan delivered her budget address last week, Democrats have voiced skepticism on the prospects of her proposal.

“I continue to have grave reservations with using gambling,” liberal Senator Martha Fuller Clark (D-Portsmouth) told the Portsmouth Herald following Governor Hassan’s budget address (2/14/2013.) “That's the conflict for me. I worry that we're allowing gambling to come to the state, (and it) will divert a huge amount of money earned in the state (to) a problematic industry,”

In a series of tweets aimed at Democrat Party leaders, State Representative Peter Sullivan (D-Manchester) sharply criticized Governor Hassan and her casino revenue scheme.

“Dem party leaders pressuring legislators to back casino solely to protect Hassan's hide,”tweeted Representative Sullivan. “Casino gambling is NOT a Democratic issue. Hope@ChairmanBuckley and @nhkathysullivan remember that...I just don't want to see any thumbs on the scale from party officers. Gov. Hassan isn't NH’s only Dem.”

Representative Sullivan also indicated that Governor Hassan’s budget gambit is already facing widespread opposition among House Democrats.

“House response to Governor's casino proposal can charitably be called underwhelming, he tweeted. “ Governor is badly overestimating House Dem support. Outside Manch/Nashua, very thin.”

Democrat Party activists have also criticized the tactics that Governor Hassan is using to promote her budget.

“I find disingenuous the implication…that we can’t fund needed services without gambling. That kind of blackmail rhetoric will turn off lawmakers rather than get them on board,” said liberal BlueHampshire (3/18/10) blogger Dean Barker. “NH should not be in the business of holding children’s welfare hostage to whether the slot machine industry gets their way.”

In addition to criticism from Democrats, Governor Hassan’s budget proposal has also faced widespread skepticism and scorn from editorial pages across New Hampshire including The Union LeaderConcord MonitorKeene SentinelNashua TelegraphPortsmouth Herald and Foster’s Daily Democrat.