- Associated Press - Wednesday, August 10, 2016

MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) - In a story Aug. 10 about a debate among Democratic gubernatorial hopefuls, The Associated Press reported erroneously that Mark Connolly went further than his primary rivals in backing a ban on military-style assault weapons. Colin Van Ostern also said he supports such a ban. The story also erroneously said that Steve Marchand favors increasing the state’s business enterprise tax and lowering the business profits tax. Marchand favors lowering the state’s business enterprise tax and increasing the business profits tax.

A corrected version of the story is below:

New Hampshire Democratic gubernatorial hopefuls debate

Three men seeking the Democratic nomination for New Hampshire governor drew distinctions Wednesday on marijuana policy, business taxes and gun control

By HOLLY RAMER

Associated Press

MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) - Three men seeking the Democratic nomination for governor drew distinctions Wednesday on marijuana policy, business taxes and gun control.

Former state securities regulator Mark Connolly, former Portsmouth Mayor Steve Marchand and Executive Councilor Colin Van Ostern faced each other for the third in a series of debates organized by New England College and hosted by WGIR radio.

While all three support decriminalizing the possession of small amounts of marijuana, only Marchand supports fully legalizing its recreational use, in part because he believes doing so could produce $30 million in annual revenue. He used the issue to argue that his opponents have failed to be specific about how they would pay for their various proposals and criticized Van Ostern for saying marijuana legalization is a low priority compared to the state’s heroin and opioid abuse crisis.

“If you’re serious about doing this, you have to look at marijuana legalization as an element of it,” Marchand said. “We’ve got to be able to walk and chew gum at the same time with public policy, or we shouldn’t be governor.”

The candidates also disagreed on the future of the state’s two main corporate taxes: the Business Enterprise Tax and the Business Profits Tax, both of which were lowered in the most recent state budget.

Marchand favors lowering the state’s business enterprise tax, essentially a tax on a business’ wages, and increasing the profits tax, which targets income earned from business activity. Connolly said he opposes the recent decision lowering the rates but would leave them alone if he’s elected. Van Ostern likewise said he wouldn’t change them.

“The last budget was the result of compromise, and I don’t think going back to unravel that compromise is going to advance our state or our economy,” he said. “What is absolutely critical for a growing New Hampshire business is predictability. They do not deserve to be treated like a yo-yo at the end of a string.”

On gun control, all three back universal background checks before gun purchases. Connolly and Van Ostern also said they back a ban on military-style assault weapons.

“We are the ‘Live Free or Die’ state. That’s our heritage, but I think we need to do more than that,” Connolly said.

The three men are among five Democrats and five Republicans hoping to replace Gov. Maggie Hassan, a Democrat who is running for U.S. Senate.

The primary is set for Sept. 13.


Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times welcomes your comments on Spot.im, our third-party provider. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.

 

Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide