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Feb 24, 2016 12:00 AM

Landrigan: Critics say Bill Gardner isn't doing enough to support NH's local elections

CONCORD - Does New Hampshire do enough to help the disabled vote in local elections? Some people are saying no and called upon the state to do more.

"The bill seeks to have the Secretary of State to do his job which he is not doing today,’’ Democratic State Sen. David Pierce said.

Critics of Secretary of State Bill Gardner are using some strong words as they pursue legislation that forces him to give more support to local elections.

"There are several things that happened in municipal elections in November that violated law,’’ Pierce said.

They claim one blind voter in Concord had to have someone else fill out the ballot because the state lacks machines for the disabled to vote in private.

"We should not continue to deprive voters of their constitutional right to a secret ballot because the secretary of state does not want to do his job," Pierce continued.

Gardner supporters insist that the state has kept a great image and that he's the nation’s longest serving election official.

"We’ve run at the direction of the secretary of state among the cleanest elections in the country and I would hope we would note that," Republican Senate Majority Leader, Jeb Bradley said.

They also insist that Gardner is putting a reform plan in place.

Ultimately, the Senate voted 16-7 to kill this bill marking another political victory for Gardner.

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