2020 New Hampshire Senate Candidate Guide

Corky Messner (Republican)
Corky Messner (Republican)
Jeanne Shaheen (Democrat - Incumbent)
Jeanne Shaheen (Democrat - Incumbent)

See Guides.vote for more online guides with links and sources. Volunteer at corkyforsenate.com or jeanneshaheen.org. Download a PDF version of this guide.

AFFORDABLE CARE ACT- Support Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare?

Corky Messner – No. It is “very important to get the cost of health care down, that we allow more market forces to work here, including transparency.”

Jeanne Shaheen – Yes. Opposed bills attempting to end ACA, which provides “critical protections” for people with pre-existing conditions or needing substance use treatment.

CAMPAIGN FINANCE – Require political ads to disclose their largest funders?

Corky Messner – No position found.

Jeanne Shaheen – Yes. “The unchecked influence of money in our elections compromises the future of our representative democracy.”

CLIMATE CHANGE – Consider human-caused climate change a serious threat? 

Corky Messner – No. “No one really knows” about human impact on climate change. Climate changes are “just part of the earth’s life cycle.”

Jeanne Shaheen – Yes.  Threats will worsen without action.  Introduced bill directing administration to meet Paris Climate Agreement standards.

CLIMATE CHANGE – Address as a top priority by taxing or limiting output of greenhouse gases?

Corky Messner – Unclear. “Improve air quality and reduce carbon emissions … create incentives to shift to modern, cleaner manufacturing processes.”

Jeanne Shaheen – Yes. Sponsored Clean Economy Act to put U.S. on path to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Supports funding for renewable energy and energy efficiency.

COURTS – SUPREME COURT NOMINATIONS – Pick Ruth Bader Ginsburg replacement for Supreme Court now or let November winner choose?

Corky Messner – Now. “President Trump, a Republican president, ought to appoint someone, and the Republican Senate ought to do its job.” See CEEP Supreme Court guide.

Jeanne Shaheen – “The American people need to choose the next president and the new president should nominate the replacement for Ruth Bader Ginsburg.” See CEEP Supreme Court guide.

COVID-19 – Support administration’s response to coronavirus pandemic?

Corky Messner – Yes. Against mandatory mask orders. “Trump continues to balance the public health challenges of the pandemic with the need to reopen the nation’s economy.”

Jeanne Shaheen – No. Supports mandatory masks, more testing, U.S.-based supply chain for medical supplies and more help for small business. Address undue impact on communities of color.

COVID CRISIS – ECONOMIC RESPONSE – Support administration’s economic response to coronavirus pandemic?

Corky Messner – Yes. Next round of relief should be “targeted and specific.” “We can’t continue the out-of-control spending that the Democrats wanted in their package.”

Jeanne Shaheen – No. Need assistance “that supports state and local governments.” Also more funding for child care, substance abuse treatment, and health care providers.

EDUCATION – Use public funding for private and/or for-profit schools?

Corky Messner – Yes. “I believe in charter schools, home-schooling, and vouchers.”

Jeanne Shaheen – No. Opposed Betsy DeVos effort to route federal funding to private schools, though accepted CARES Act funding for their students. As governor, she vetoed charter schools that take up public resources.

ENVIRONMENT – Tighten or loosen environmental protections?

Corky Messner – Loosen. “I am against the overreach of environmental regulations.”

Jeanne Shaheen – Tighten. Opposed repeal of Obama-era Clean Power Plan. Trump is “pursuing a policy that puts the well-being of the fossil fuel industry over American lives.”

FINANCIAL REGULATION – Tighten or loosen regulation of banks and credit card companies?

Corky Messner – No position found.

Jeanne Shaheen – Tighten. “The Dodd-Frank Act was a historic bill that I was proud to support to hold Wall Street accountable.”

GUN RULES –Enact more restrictive legislation on firearms?

Corky Messner – No. Will not vote for any gun-control measures, including universal background checks.

Jeanne Shaheen – Yes. “I’ve supported bipartisan efforts to make background checks universal and more effective.”

IMMIGRATION – Path to citizenship for DACA residents brought to the U.S. as children?

Corky Messner – No position found.

Jeanne Shaheen – Yes. “The American people overwhelmingly support protecting DREAMers and providing a path to citizenship.”

IMMIGRATION – Support expanded border walls?

Corky Messner – Yes. Supports Trump’s wall to “secure the southern border to put an end to illegal immigration” and “help stop and slow the flow of illegal drugs.”

Jeanne Shaheen – No. Opposed diverting military funding to pay for wall “that President Trump promised Mexico would pay for.” Supports common-sense strong security at our borders.

IMPEACHMENT – Support calling witnesses and indicting Trump on impeachment charges?

Corky Messner – No. “I would have voted not to remove. I would have stood up against this highly political impeachment process.”

Jeanne Shaheen – Yes. Voted to impeach. “This refusal to call witnesses and documents … sets a very dangerous precedent.”

IRAN – Oppose military attacks on Iran without congressional approval?

Corky Messner – No position found.

Jeanne Shaheen – Yes. Voted to require administration to come before Congress before taking action because “war with Iran is not in America’s interest.”

LEGAL ABORTION – Keep legal or ban?

Corky Messner – Mostly ban. Ban after 20 weeks. Supports rule barring U.S. support for health care NGOs that in any part of their work provide, refer or promote abortion.

Jeanne Shaheen – Legal. Warns of “efforts to place extreme restrictions on women’s reproductive rights.” Wrote amendment to cover abortions for military women if victims of rape or incest.

LGBT RIGHTS – Support same-sex marriage and extension of LGBTQ protections against discrimination?

Corky Messner – Unclear. “What they’re teaching kids in school [about ‘transgender’] is horrific.” “Transgenders in military’s OK, as long as there’s no distraction from the mission.”

Jeanne Shaheen – Yes. “Elated” by Supreme Court decision for marriage equality. Co-sponsored Equality Act that adds explicit protections for LGBTQ Americans to the nation’s civil rights laws.

MINIMUM WAGE – Raise federal hourly minimum wage above current $7.25/hour?

Corky Messner – No. “This is a state issue; there should be no federal minimum wage.”

Jeanne Shaheen – Yes. Has supported Raise the Wage Act “so that we can help lift families out of poverty and improve our economy.”

PLANNED PARENTHOOD – Should Planned Parenthood receive public funds for non-abortion-related care?

Corky Messner – No. Opposes any federal funding of abortion providers.

Jeanne Shaheen – Yes. Worked to block Planned Parenthood cuts and to protect access to birth control, cancer screenings, and other health services.

POLICE/COMMUNITY ISSUES – Restrict police use of force and increase public oversight?

Corky Messner – No. “We need law and order.” Reform law enforcement “to the extent that bad cops are out of the system” and have “better training … to de-escalate problems.”

Jeanne Shaheen – Yes. Ban choke holds; address police reform at its core; “compromise between people who want to totally redefine it and those who don’t want to change it at all.”

STUDENT FINANCIAL AID – Support lower interest on student loans?

Corky Messner – Unclear. Supports a permanent GI Bill.

Jeanne Shaheen – Yes. Has opposed increasing interest rates on subsidized student loans.

VOTING RULES – Support stricter ID requirements and other rules on voting?

Corky Messner – No position found.

Jeanne Shaheen – No. Opposed N.H. law that, before a court limited its reach, required college students who voted to re-register cars in the state. Co-sponsored bill restoring Voting Rights Act.

Other candidates include Justin O’Donnell (Libertarian) Due to limited space, we can only include candidates polling 15%, but check out his website. Campus Election Engagement Project is a nonpartisan effort to help colleges engage students in elections. Sources include Votesmart.org, FactCheck.org, Politifact.com and candidate statements. Vote411.org and Ballotready.org offer guides to local races.

Campus Election Engagement Project is a nonpartisan effort to help colleges engage students in elections. Sources include Votesmart.org, FactCheck.org, Politifact.com and candidate statements. Vote411.org and Ballotready.org  offer guides to local races.