MANCHESTER, N.H. — Democratic gubernatorial candidate Maggie Hassan has been declared the winner in a hotly contested race to replace retiring New Hampshire Governor John Lynch.
Hassan and her opponent ended a fierce campaign that focused on improving the economy, taxes and social issues. Her challenger Republican Ovide Lamontagne, a business attorney from Manchester and Tea Party ally supported repeal of the state’s same-sex marriage law in favor of civil unions but would have allowed keeping existing same-sex marriages.
Lamontagne also opposed government regulations that would have required employers to provide insurance coverage for contraception, and he declared his intent to defund Planned Parenthood because its services include abortions.
Hassan, a former three-term state senator from Exeter, has been a strong advocate for same-sex equality along with being opposed to efforts to cut funding from Planned Parenthood.
Both candidates also pledged to veto a broad-based income or sales tax, but Lamontagne questioned the sincerity of Hassan’s pledge because she supported an income tax a decade ago running for the state Senate, while renouncing broad-based taxes in later campaigns.
“Governor-elect Hassan’s victory is vital to preserving New Hampshire’s popular marriage equality law and we thank her for her continued commitment to the LGBT community,” said Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign, in a statement tonight.
“She will no doubt continue the great work of Gov. Lynch in ensuring that all loving and committed couples in New Hampshire are able to experience the joys of marriage,” said Griffin.