RYE — State Sen. Tom Sherman is leaning heavily on his experience at Concord and his credentials as a doctor to announce Monday that he is running for governor.
Sherman, 64, of Rye, is the state’s first well-known Democrat to announce a gubernatorial campaign in 2022. If he wins the party’s nomination, he will challenge three-term Republican Governor Chris Sununu , 47 years.
Sherman announced last month that he would explore a run for governor. His announcement that he is campaigning for the state’s top civil servant touted his record “of expanding access to health care, lowering prescription drug costs, keeping our elections fair and safe, and to protect our firefighters and drinking water from harmful chemicals.”
Sherman also targeted Sununu in a prepared statement.
“I’m running for governor because right now a lot of families are struggling with rising costs, and under Governor Sununu we’re getting even further out of the way,” Sherman said. “The state to live free or die has always valued individual responsibility and dedication to our communities, but Governor Sununu signed the most extreme abortion ban in state history and legislation aimed at censoring our teachers. We need to get back on track and focus on the real issues facing Granite Staters – rising property taxes, the availability of child care and affordable housing, protecting public education and the high cost of energy.
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Sherman, is a gastroenterologist with over 30 years of experience. He is in his second two-year term representing Seacoast District 24 in the State Senate, serving the cities of Greenland, Hampton, Hampton Falls, Kensington, New Castle, North Hampton, Newton, Rye, Seabrook, Stratham and South Hampton. Previously, he served two terms as a state representative in the House. He was elected to the Senate in 2018 and re-elected in 2020.
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“I’ve had a lifetime of service since I was in high school working in an ambulance to go to medical school, where I designed a clinic at a shelter in Hartford, Connecticut, which is still operating today. today,” Sherman said last month. “That’s how I think. A lot of people had unmet health needs and there was a medical school a short drive away where students could have clinical experience with people who desperately needed it.”
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He said Sununu had signed “one of the most restrictive abortion bans in the country” in 2021.
He added: ‘It’s not just restrictive, it’s cruel’, citing the 24-week limit is coupled with ultrasound requirements and may compel ‘women who have been raped or have an abnormality lethal fetus” to carry a pregnancy to term.
Sherman also denounced Sununu’s decision to sign the law under state budget rules which he said “censor teachers” and the efforts of the current legislature to impose more restrictions on what is taught in schools. state schools.
“I believe we’re off track,” Sherman said. “We are not moving forward in a way that is traditionally New Hampshire. But there is tremendous hope that we can unite the state. We have the best workers and the best companies in the country. We can still be more productive and prosperous.” .”
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Sununu won his third term in 2020 with more than 65% of the vote in a decisive victory over Dan Feltes, who arrived with credentials as a Democratic state senator. Sununu has raised his political profile nationally by attending events across the country and appearing on national TV stations, fueling speculation that he could run for the presidential nomination in 2024 or beyond. .
Sununu’s spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Sherman boasted that he was the only medical officer in the state Senate and positioned himself as a leader in public health. He was candid about the issues of COVID-19 and issues related to PFAS contamination in nearshore water. He is the ranking Democrat on the Senate Health and Human Services Committee and sits on the Election Law and Municipal Affairs Committee.
During the coronavirus pandemic, Sherman served as chief medical officer for the COVID Policy Alliance, an all-volunteer organization of Massachusetts Institute of Technology faculty formed to combat the spread and impact of the virus. Sherman also chaired and co-founded the Senior Support Team, an effort launched by the COVID Policy Alliance, to help senior living facilities. The commissioner of the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services nominated Sherman to serve on the state’s Disaster Care Standards Medical Advisory Committee.
This story can be updated.