The Burton Bailout.


Some weeks ago I contacted Executive Councilor Ray Burton and Senator John Gallus to see if they are endorsing John Stephen to be the next governor of New Hampshire. Today I got 50% of my request:

Burton is endorsing John Stephen.

I’ve received this information from a friend that attended a question and answer session for Stephen at Presby Plastics Inc. Presby manufacturers septic systems and components in the Whitefield Industrial Park near the Mount Washington Regional Airport in Whitefield, N.H. They employ some 35 people. From what I now understand Stephen appeared surrounded by his staffers and supporters, including the long-time Executive Councilor from Bath. I’m not sure that the event even qualified for a Q & A designation as Stephen merely gave a fluff speech in his typical, undefined themes and then took questions from his friends and supporters in the crowd. Many of the questions and responses were nothing more than a way to create an environment of blame for Governor Lynch and all that has gone wrong in New Hampshire. Of course the only solutions Stephens mentioned are tunes that play well with the voters like cutting spending.

Which is unrealistic and irresponsible.

My source stated that it was difficult to be recognized by Stephen and that when he finally got through not only did Stephen not answer the question poised he didn’t even take the time to consider the ideas as policy or possible direction for the future. Apparently this happened on a few questions and finally the candidate had to be bailed out by the ever experienced Councilor Burton. I don’t have the exact words of either the question(s) or the responses, but I do know the content and I’ll speculate that it went very close to this:

Question: “Commissioner Stephen do you support expanded rail service in New Hampshire like commuter rail into Nashua or even building a needed rail siding into the Whitefield Industrial Park?"

Stephen: “It’s not a question of supporting any type of transportation project; it’s a matter of building an infrastructure for the future of the state.”

Burton Responds: “Well in New Hampshire we need an effective transportation system of highway, rail and air. But for rail to be effective there would need to be a customer.”

Stephen should have been able to answer this question on his own, especially the commuter rail project but he didn’t. A major transportation policy idea and Stephen simply glosses it over. This isn’t leadership in any type of form. I’ve termed the Burton Bailout as an answer and it really isn't.

Answering a question with an explanation isn’t an answer. This is what teachers do.