Chris Sununu and Colin Van Ostern face off during the first televised gubernatorial general election debate, on Oct. 5, 2016 in Henniker

Oct 7, 2016 6:00 AM

First on NH1 News: NHDP targets Sununu over employees hours in new digital ad

NH1 News Political Director

CONCORD – The New Hampshire Democratic Party is going up with a digital ad on Friday that charges Republican gubernatorial nominee and Waterville Valley Resort CEO Chris Sununu with limiting the hours of some of his employees at Waterville Valley in order to deny them heath care.

The spot, which was first reported by NH1 News, is part of a week-long push by the state party to attack Sununu over his record at the ski resort.

The internet commercial includes a clip of Sununu from a meeting last month of the Nashua Chamber of Commerce saying “I lay awake at night fretting about the health care plans for my employees.”

The ad then includes an on screen message that says “Chris Sununu cut employees’ hours to deny them health insurance altogether.”

That’s followed by a clip of Sununu from Stratham’s Wiggen Memorial Library in June saying “I have to tell employees we have to keep your hours down to 29 hours.”

The ad then asks “If this is how Chris Sununu runs his ski resort, how will he run New Hampshire.”

The web spot follows a Tuesday news conference by the NHDP where former AFL-CIO President Mark MacKenzie accused Sununu of trying “to dodge the Affordable Care Act.”

"If Chris Sununu's concern about his employees' healthcare plans is keeping him up at night, we've got a simple fix that will have him sleeping soundly: stop slashing their hours to avoid providing them healthcare," NHDP Chair Ray Buckley added in a statement to NH1 News.

In an interview Tuesday with NH1 News, Sununu responded to the Democratic attacks.

“We've constantly had to manage through Obamacare. Obamacare is a disaster. We've never laid a single person off. And I give my team at Waterville great credit for managing through these costs,” Sununu said.

“Look at the state of New Hampshire alone who has limited their workers, thousands, thousands of their workers, to 29 hours or less. it's not right. It’s happening all across the state,” he added.

The NHDP says they’re spending money to run the spot for a week on Facebook. While this is the state party’s first ad on this topic, the Democratic Governors Association’s independent expenditure’s launched two commercials on the same issue.

Sununu and Democratic nominee Colin Van Ostern, a fellow member of New Hampshire’s Executive Council, are running to succeed Democratic Gov. Maggie Hassan, who’s challenging Republican U.S. Sen. Kelly Ayotte rather than running for a third term in the Corner Office.

READ: Latest poll numbers in New Hampshire

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