SB142: Legislators & Gov Sununu trashed their oaths to protect the NH Constitution over tampons - Granite Grok

SB142: Legislators & Gov Sununu trashed their oaths to protect the NH Constitution over tampons

UPDATED: I just called Gov. Sununu’s office and asked if I could talk to someone in the Press office about this.  I was told to email my request to Sununu.Press@nh.gov as no one was available.  So, I will.

BUMPED and UPDATED 2: NH State Rep Josh Yokela (R-Brentwood) reminded me (and I had forgotten to put it in – “Any citizen can sue to strike the bill as unconstitutional under Article 8 for breach of Article 28-a…”. That is based on the Constitutional Amendment that was passed by the Citizens of NH in the last election. See HANGOVER, below. It seems like a, pretty much, open and close case!

*****

I keep hearing, during partisan wars, that “no one is above the Law”. Yet, here they ALL are, including the Chief Executive of the State of NH, refusing to heed to the NH Constitution, when crafting laws for the rest of us. Why should we follow their laws if they refuse to follow our Foundational Law?

The Constitution was written to limit the role, intrusiveness, and size of government. That can’t happen unless our elected officials actually read what they’ve pledged their fealty to, and hew to its restrictions.

These boobs and self-righteous, self-important incompetents have just shoved our faces in it: “Constitution?  We need no stinkin’ Constitution because we’re ELECTED!”.

So, I’m looking for a lawyer to help out on this. It is about as clear a violation of the NH Constitution as it gets.  They didn’t even TRY to hide it.  From SB142 (full text below, as well as the roll call vote):

SHOT:

III.  The school district shall bear the cost of supplying menstrual hygiene products.  A school district may seek grants or partner with a nonprofit or community-based organization to fulfill this obligation.

CHASER:

[Art.] 28-a. [Mandated Programs.] The state shall not mandate or assign any new, expanded or modified programs or responsibilities to any political subdivision in such a way as to necessitate additional local expenditures by the political subdivision unless such programs or responsibilities are fully funded by the state or unless such programs or responsibilities are approved for funding by a vote of the local legislative body of the political subdivision.

HANGOVER:

[Art.] 8. [Accountability of Magistrates and Officers; Public’s Right to Know.] All power residing originally in, and being derived from, the people, all the magistrates and officers of government are their substitutes and agents, and at all times accountable to them.  Government, therefore, should be open, accessible, accountable and responsive.  To that end, the public’s right of access to governmental proceedings and records shall not be unreasonably restricted.  The public also has a right to an orderly, lawful, and accountable government.  Therefore, any individual taxpayer eligible to vote in the State, shall have standing to petition the Superior Court to declare whether the State or political subdivision in which the taxpayer resides has spent, or has approved spending, public funds in violation of a law, ordinance, or constitutional provision.  In such a case, the taxpayer shall not have to demonstrate that his or her personal rights were impaired or prejudiced beyond his or her status as a taxpayer.  However, this right shall not apply when the challenged governmental action is the subject of a judicial or administrative decision from which there is a right of appeal by statute or otherwise by the parties to that proceeding.

I’m not even going to get into the issue of why govt/schools should be doing this in the first place.

My beef is that we have a whole set of elected politicians that just said “SCREW YOU” to the limitations they should be following in the NH Constitution.

My beef isn’t the relatively puny cost of this unfunded mandate – it’s the Principle of fundamental Civics that we have a representative form of government that is supposed to be subject to the limitations and restriction laid upon it by our Constitution.   It is a Constitution Principle.

If our Representatives are so callous in this small deal, it is also an indication of how they often they may be doing with over a 1,000 bills/year?  This is a feel-good law – no less but no law.  This could be handled by the private sector in some other manner – we needed a Constitution busting law in order to carry this out? If they are willing to trash a Constitutional Principle, what other Principles are being thrown out the window as well?

If we, the electors, cannot trust that the elected are doing what they should be doing, why should they be able to trust that we will follow their Laws?

Here’s the SB142 in its entirety (emphasis mine):

CHAPTER 252
SB 142-LOCAL – FINAL VERSION

02/14/2019   0306s
8May2019… 1478h

2019 SESSION

19-1107
06/08

SENATE BILL 142-LOCAL

AN ACT requiring menstrual hygiene products in school restrooms.

SPONSORS: Sen. Hennessey, Dist 5; Sen. Levesque, Dist 12; Sen. Cavanaugh, Dist 16; Sen. Feltes, Dist 15; Sen. Fuller Clark, Dist 21; Sen. Kahn, Dist 10; Rep. Campion, Graf. 12; Rep. Josephson, Graf. 11; Rep. Mulligan, Graf. 12

COMMITTEE: Education and Workforce Development

─────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────

AMENDED ANALYSIS

This bill requires school boards to make menstrual hygiene products available, free of charge, in restrooms designated for girls and gender-neutral restrooms located in public middle and high schools.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.
Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.
02/14/2019   0306s
8May2019… 1478h 19-1107
06/08

STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE
In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Nineteen

AN ACT requiring menstrual hygiene products in school restrooms.

Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:

252:1  New Section; Menstrual Hygiene Products.  Amend RSA 189 by inserting after section 16 the following new section:
189:16-a  Menstrual Hygiene Products.
I.  The school district shall make menstrual hygiene products available at no cost in all gender neutral bathrooms and bathrooms designated for females located in public middle and high schools.
II.  Menstrual hygiene products shall include sanitary napkins and tampons.
III.  The school district shall bear the cost of supplying menstrual hygiene products.  A school district may seek grants or partner with a nonprofit or community-based organization to fulfill this obligation.
252:2  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect upon its passage.

Approved: July 17, 2019
Effective Date: July 17, 2019

Roll Call:

These NH Senate Republicans honored the NH Constitution:

  • Birdsell, Regina
  • Carson, Sharon
  • French, Harold
  • Giuda, Bob
  • Gray, James
  • Morse, Chuck

And why am I not surprised that Jeb Bradley and John Reagan ignored their Constitutional duty and voted with the Democrats (who ALL ignored Article 28-A (and why am I not surprised). Good government and good bills stay within their Lane; this ain’t doing it.

All of the NH House Republicans honored their responsibilities to the NH Constitution EXCEPT for:

  • Arthur Barnes (Rockingham 8)
  • Charles Burns (Hillsborough 23)
  • Joel Desilet (Rockingham 7 – Windham) Yeah, Joel, this is gonna end up in yet another post. You do stupid things, we nail you.  You. Just. Haven’t. Learned. Yet. Have. You???
  • Mary Heath (Hillsborough 14)

All Democrats voted for it.  Must have been a victimization bill, I guess.