First on NH1 News: Hassan campaign criticizes Ayotte over votes against 'critical' highway funding
CONCORD – Maggie Hassan’s Senate campaign is touting the two-term Democratic governor’s work to fix New Hampshire’s highways, roads and bridges while criticizing Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte for past votes “against critical funding.”
The release, which was obtained by NH1 News and will be widely distributed on Monday, comes at the start of Infrastructure Week. It highlights the transportation bill Hassan signed into law during her first term in the Corner Office, which included funds to finish the expansion of Interstate-93. The campaign calls plan “the most significant state-level investment in 23 years.”
The campaign’s also touting Hassan’s 10-year transportation plan for New Hampshire, which was approved last week by the state Senate, and the governor’s efforts to bring high-speed rail from Boston to Nashua and Manchester.
"Throughout her time as Governor, Maggie Hassan has focused on fixing our aging infrastructure to ensure that all New Hampshire citizens and businesses have the reliable highways, roads and bridges that they need to thrive," Hassan campaign press secretary Meira Bernstein said in a statement.
Hassan’s campaign is criticizing Ayotte for being what they say is only member of the New Hampshire congressional delegation to vote against a highway funding bill that included federal funds to widen I-93, and for supporting a measure that would have cut $20 million in funding to replace the Memorial Bridge in Portsmouth.
Bernstein added that the senator “has a record of voting with the Koch Brothers' political arm while New Hampshire's transportation infrastructure pays the price. New Hampshire needs a Senator who will work to ensure we have an infrastructure system that matches our 21st century economy. Kelly Ayotte is not that Senator.”
It's no surprise that the Ayotte campaign disagrees.
Ayotte campaign spokeswoman Liz Johnson told NH1 News that "Kelly recently helped pass a long-term highway bill that funds important projects like the widening of I-93, and she led additional measures to repair New Hampshire's roads and bridges."
"This is yet another desperate attempt by Governor Hassan to distract from the fact that she was out of state for 12 days last month and has failed to keep her promise to focus on her job as governor," she added.
The race between Ayotte and Hassan is one of the most high profile, expensive, and negative Senate showdowns in the country this year.
Infrastructure Week is a national week of events that aims to elevate infrastructure as a critical issue that impacts all Americans and raise awareness of the country’s infrastructure problems.