CONCORD, N.H. – New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu on Tuesday announced that he will be running for Governor in 2022, ending months of anticipation.
Sununu served on the New Hampshire Executive Council from 2011 to 2017 and was elected as governor in 2016, 2018 and 2020, defeating Democrats Colin Van Ostern, Molly Kelly and Dan Feltes, respectively.
If elected, he will become only the second modern New Hampshire governor with four terms, following John Lynch.
Republicans across the country urged Sununu to run against Maggie Hassan for one of New Hampshire’s two U.S. Senate seats next year.
In a Nov. 9 news conference Sununu said he felt he could do more for the state of New Hampshire as governor than as a senator, citing the difference in speed between the two jobs and gridlock in Washington. He also said he believes several other Republicans could defeat Hassan next year.
“We’re not quite done with the job here,” Sununu said.
Following the announcement, several New Hampshire-based organizations opposing Sununu released statements.
“We are at a crisis point – access to abortion is in jeopardy across our country. Despite continued public support for keeping abortion care safe and legal, Chris Sununu has doubled down on his efforts to restrict Granite Staters’ freedom and constitutional rights. From the Executive Council to the corner office, from defunding Planned Parenthood to signing New Hampshire’s first abortion ban in modern history, Chris Sununu has consistently chipped away at reproductive rights. It’s time to retire Sununu’s antiquated attacks on abortion access – not give him two more years to further restrict our reproductive freedom,” said Planned Parenthood NH Action Fund Vice President of Public Affairs Kayla Montgomery.
“Let’s be clear about why he didn’t run: his approval ratings are in free fall after signing an abortion ban and completely mismanaging our state’s handling of the pandemic. He has never been so unpopular and so vulnerable, and he is in trouble. Granite Staters are sick and tired of Chris Sununu’s record of failure as Governor and I look forward to electing a Democratic Governor in 2022 who will do what Sununu has failed to do in five years: fight for Granite Staters,” said New Hampshire Democratic Party Chairman Ray Buckley.
“Chris Sununu has made it clear to voters over his tenure as governor that he is anti-choice, anti-abortion, anti-healthcare, anti-public education, anti-public health, pro-COVID, pro-extremism, pro-white nationalism, and pro getting into bed with the most radical factions of his party. He has failed to lead our state toward a stronger, healthier, and more inclusive New Hampshire. From failing to take meaningful action against antisemitic elected officials in his own party to outright campaigning with secessionist militia leaders and anti-abortion extremist politicians, Chris Sununu’s administration has enabled hatred and disinformation in New Hampshire to flourish. It is clear Granite Staters reject Sununu’s divisive and cowardly agenda and we will continue to work hard to make sure constituents know about Complicit Chris Sununu’s dangerous record,” said Granite State Progress Executive Director Zandra Rice Hawkins.
“For years, Granite Staters have watched Chris Sununu put his anti-choice, special interest agenda first while the people of New Hampshire pay the price. It is no surprise with such a record of failure, he would not feel he could win a Senate race against a candidate as strong as Maggie Hassan,” said New Hampshire Senate Democratic Leader Donna Soucy. “After having signed into law the most restrictive abortion ban in modern New Hampshire history, which includes no exceptions for rape or incest, forces women to get costly and medically unnecessary ultrasounds, and includes criminal penalties for doctors, Chris Sununu will have an extremely difficult time winning reelection here after leaving so many New Hampshire families behind. I look forward to working with our Democratic candidates to reclaim the Governor’s office and send Chris Sununu back to the private sector.”
“Chris Sununu uses his political office to push an agenda that benefits special interests, his donors, and himself at the expense of Granite Staters — and that’s exactly why he is running again for governor. This weekend, New Hampshire hit COVID highs unseen since last January, and under Sununu’s leadership remains the least vaccinated state in New England and the only state in the country to reject millions in federal funds to end the pandemic,” said New Hampshire House Democratic Leader Renny Cushing. “More than that, Sununu’s decision to veto 90 bills over five years — more than the previous 11 years combined — demonstrates his sheer inability to work across the aisle for Granite Staters. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to determine that another term for Sununu would be disastrous for New Hampshire.”
Sununu also received praise following the decision.
“I have been proud to work closely with Governor Sununu for the past five years and of the tremendous success that we’ve achieved together including lowering taxes, creating jobs, getting through the pandemic, expanding school choice, and protecting our freedoms,” said New Hampshire State Senate President Chuck Morse. “I’m looking forward to continuing to work closely with Governor Sununu in moving our state forward.”