NH Gov. Judd Gregg Runs For Senate
CONCORD, N.H. (AP) _ Gov. Judd Gregg announced he’s running for the U.S. Senate today, a week after Sen. Warren Rudman decided to step down.
″I believe I can continue the tradition of Yankee frugality and common sense epitomized by Warren Rudman. I believe I can step up and immediately hit them between the eyes,″ Gregg said at a Statehouse news conference.
″I may not be the most flamboyant person in government, but I think the people of this state know what I’ll do.″
He said he supports term limitations, a line item veto, a cut in Social Security taxes, no unfunded mandates, cutting entitlement programs and defense spending, and reforming health care.
Republican Senate hopeful Larry Brady has been attacking Gregg since declaring his own candidacy Thursday. Today, he stepped up the rhetoric.
″It’s interesting that the governor never once mentioned jobs in New Hampshire, never once did he mention the thousands upon thousands of jobs that have been lost″ in his tenure, Brady said after Gregg’s announcement.
Brady also attacked Gregg as being out of touch with New Hampshire’s suffering and ″part of the problem with Washington.″ He said he aims to tap voters’ anger against political insiders in campaigning against Gregg.
Gregg, 45, was elected governor in 1988. Before that, he was a four-term congressman and a member of the Executive Council from 1979-81.
Reminded that when he left Congress, he said he was frustrated because he didn’t think he could get things done, Gregg said:
″When I left Washington it was a mess, and it got worse,″ he said. ″I believe I can go to the Senate and make a difference quickly.″
Gregg’s announcement sets off a free-for-all for the governor’s office. On the Democratic side, former state party Chairman Ned Helms and four-term state Rep. Arnie Arnesen already have announced their candidacies. Franklin Mayor Brenda Elias and former U.S. Rep. Norman D’Amours are considering running.
Within minutes of Gregg’s announcment, Senate President Ed Dupont, a Republican, called a news conference to discuss his plans. And former Attorney General Steve Merrill has said he will run. Others considering a run include former Senate President William Bartlett, state Rep. Elizabeth Hager and state Sen. Gordon Humphrey.
For Rudman’s seat, other than Brady, unknown Republican lawyer Rob Rabuck of Concord and John Rauh, unsuccessful 1990 Democratic U.S. Senate candidate, of Sunapee, already have declared their candidacies.
Rudman said last week that he is frustrated with Congress and won’t seek a third term.