N.H. Legislature shifts to right - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

N.H. Legislature shifts to right

Lebanon, New Hampshire - November 3, 2010

New Hampshire had some close races this political season and aside from Democrat John Lynch getting re-elected as Governor, the Republicans also picked up U.S. House and Senate seats. Charlie Bass took back the 2nd District Congressional seat he once held and Kelly Ayotte cruised to victory in the U.S. Senate race.

Democrats in Lebanon were busy cleaning up their party headquarters Wednesday morning. Liberals in this area of the state like state Rep. Laurie Harding, who was re-elected to her fourth term, did relatively well. "We wish the state was more like the Upper Valley, but the reality is that it's not and we need to be sensitive to that," she said.

As a whole, Democrats running for state office in the Granite State took a beating. The party went from having a majority in both the House and Senate, to being in the minority in both. "We are certainly concerned about some of the really fine pieces of legislation that we have passed over the last four years," Rep. Harding said.

That's because Republicans now have a super majority, meaning they have gained enough seats to override a Governor's veto. Repealing New Hampshire's marriage equality law may be at the top of that list. "It's a very, very devastating day for Democrats in New Hampshire," Rep. Harding said.

"It's a fabulous day, It is fabulous. I mean we are one happy state right now," said Karen Cervantes, who is a life-long republican in Lebanon. She attributes at least part of the big swing to the right to the gay marriage law. "I think is was definitely one of them and I am hoping that they will bring it up again and they will repeal it because I think that gays have a right to their civil rights, but not to marriage," she said.

"That to me would be tragic. I believe the state should stay out of people's private lives," Rep. Harding said.

But it's the people who have the power on election day and according to Cervantes, the people have spoken. "The Republicans and our supporters -- because they are not all Republicans -- are looking at how things are being run and are saying no, no more," she said.

A repeal of the marriage equality bill has already been filed and some Democratic lawmakers said they expect the issue is likely to come up shortly after the session reconvenes next year.

Adam Sullivan - WCAX News

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