Is Gov. Hassan Afraid To Answer The Question?

by GrokWatch News Desk

maggie hassan

Max Ledoux | GrokWatch News Desk

I’ve been trying to get Maggie Hassan’s office to say whether or not she’s seen undercover videos produced by the Center for Medical Progress. The videos—both the edited versions and the full, unedited footage—have been available online since mid-July. They show top-level Planned Parenthood doctors and administrators haggling over the price of baby parts. The most recent videos reveal that Planned Parenthood delivers intact baby cadavers to StemExpress, a research company. In one video, a former StemExpress employee describes witnessing a baby born alive, then vivisected. I believe this is a topic that is of interest to many New Hampshire citizens.

Governor Hassan has publicly defended Planned Parenthood and refused to call for a state investigation of the nation’s largest abortion purveyor, even while the New Hampshire executive council has rescinded the more than half a million dollars in state funding that had been going to the organization. District 1 council member Joe Kenney confirmed to me at an event on August 23 that the state money is being held and will not be going to Planned Parenthood. The council is planning on redirecting the funds to health-care facilities that do not perform abortions, he said.

I’ve emailed Hassan’s communications director, William Hinkle, every single business day since August 19, but he has not replied. I’ve also called him several times, but his receptionist, Kyle Middleton, will not allow me to speak to him. To be fair to Mr. Hinkle, he was on vacation the first three days I emailed him. However, the auto-reply out-of-office email I received from him on August 19 instructed me to contact Amber Melo “for an immediate response.” I have copied Ms. Melo on every single email to Mr. Hinkle ever since. She has never replied.

I did receive a generic form letter from gov.intern@nh.gov on August 21. This letter was signed by Benjamin Belanger, who is the assistant director of citizen services. The letter did not answer my specific questions but praised Planned Parenthood, saying it “indiscriminately serves men, women, and families.” I have copied Mr. Belanger on all emails since then, but he has failed to respond.

Governor Maggie Hassan, a Democrat, is reportedly contemplating a U.S. Senate run challenging Republican Kelly Ayotte next year. I emailed Ayotte’s communications director, Liz Johnson, on August 24. Five minutes after I sent the email, I received a reply from Ms. Johnson: “Senator Ayotte has seen some of the video content and has also read about it.”

It is primary season here in New Hampshire, and like many Granite Staters I have been attending various candidates’ events. Most recently I went to a meet-and-greet in Center Harbor with Carly Fiorina. I had the opportunity to ask her directly if she had seen the Planned Parenthood videos. She answered without hesitation: “Yes. I’ve seen every one.”

The state attorney general, Joseph Foster, who is a Democrat, told WMUR on August 4 that he had watched the videos (released up to that time) to “keep myself informed.”

Have you seen the videos? It’s a simple question that is easy to answer, as proven by Johnson, Fiorina, and Foster. So why won’t anyone in Hassan’s office answer it?

Planned Parenthood of Northern New England Action Fund PAC endorsed both Hassan’s 2012 election and 2014 reelection campaigns. The pro-abortion Emily’s List also endorsed Hassan and has directly contributed $59,000 to her campaigns, including $50,000 in 2014 alone, according to followthemoney.org. She also has a 100 percent rating from NARAL Pro-Choice America.

Anyone who’s interested in knowing whether the governor has seen the videos can try to contact Mr. Hinkle, Ms. Melo, Mr. Belanger, or Mariann White, who is the director of citizen services. The convention for emails is firstname.lastname@nh.gov. The telephone number is (603) 271-2121.

Just don’t expect an answer.

 

minutemenIf you would like to contribute to the GrokWatch News Desk and join New Hampshire’s local New Media citizen Journalists please email GrokWatch@granitegrok.com. Please be sure to put “GrokWatch News Desk” in the subject line of your email.

 

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