Dear New Hampshire Democrats,

We need your help. Over the next few months, the New Hampshire Democratic Party Platform Committee will travel around the State to hear from you on the content of our 2018 Platform.  We are charged with building a Platform that finds the common ground among us, and helps make the case for why Democrats, Independents, and Republicans - our friends and neighbors - should support the Democratic vision for moving New Hampshire forward.

The Platform is a statement of our principles and a direct appeal to the people of New Hampshire. 

We hope you will take the time to respond to this message with your thoughts and attend one of our hearings.  In an effort to hear from as many democrats as possible, the Committee has scheduled hearings across the state.

  • March 19 at 6pm, Cook Memorial Library, 93 Main St., Tamworth (Carroll)
  • March 20 at 6:30pm, NHDP Headquarters, 105 N. State St., Concord (Merrimack)
  • March 26 at 6:45pm, Upper Valley Senior Center, Lebanon (Grafton)
  • March 27 at 7pm, Moody Bldg., Conference Rm. 24, Tremont Sq., Claremont (Sullivan)
  • April 2 at 7pm, Nashua Public Library, 2 Court St., Nashua (Hillsborough) 
  • April 3 at 6pm, 49 Community Way, Keene (Cheshire)
  • April 7 at 10am, Senior Center 77 Riverglen Ln., Littleton (Upper Grafton)
  • April 7 at 6pm, Chinburg Mill, 431 Central Ave., Dover (Strafford)
  • April 9 at 7pm, Daniel Webster Room, Exeter Inn, 90 Front St., Exeter (Rockingham)
  • April 11 at 6pm, Laconia Public Library, 695 N Main St, Laconia (Belknap)
  • April 14 at 10am, Manchester Public Library, 405 Pine St., Manchester (Manchester)
  • April 20 at 5:30pm, Hope Recover Center, 823 Main St, Berlin (Coos)


For those who are unable to participate at one of the scheduled hearings, you may participate by phone on March 20, 2018 at 6:30pm by signing up via THIS LINK. The Platform Committee will also take comments through April 27, 2018 via mail/delivery (NHDP, Att: Platform Committee, 105 N. State St., Concord, NH 03301), e-mail (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) and fax (603-225-6797).

            We hope that Democrats will not only use these hearings as a chance to help build a strong Platform but also to come out and meet like-minded folks who care about this State deeply and know that New Hampshire can do better.  The Platform hearings are a chance to exchange ideas about what we stand for as well as an opportunity to build enthusiasm for the 2018 elections.  

            Attached please find the 2016 Platform for your reference, as well as the Committee’s rules which give an overview of the process.

Please let us know what you think and don’t be shy.  We want to hear from you.  This is your Party and your Platform and we can’t do it without you and your thoughts.  


The 2018 NHDP Platform Committee

Cinde Warmington, Chair

Representative Cindy Rosenwald, Co-Chair

Senator Donna Soucy, Co-Chair

Gene Martin (Manchester)

Ken Roos (Concord)

Gerri Cannon (Somersworth)

Laura O'Neill (Manchester)

Dan Chartrand (Exeter) 

Meredith Shevitz (Manchester)

Susan Moore (Franconia)

Michelle Moge  (Derry) 

Michael Strand (Peterborough)

Shoshana Kelly (Nashua) 

Dario Scalco (Manchester)

Zandra Rice-Hawkins (Goffstown)

Maggie Rice (Keene)

2016 Platform


New Hampshire Democratic Party Platform



New Hampshire Democrats stand for policies that support strong, healthy communities and families, a strong economy with opportunities for growth and a fundamental system of fairness and justice. Democrats are committed to spurring job creation, building our infrastructure, and bringing fairness and opportunity to our economy and our civic life.  We believe that healthy communities and strong families are essential to the well- being of our citizens and to our ability to foster business development and a vibrant economy.  We are committed to upholding the right of every eligible voter to cast their ballot free from unnecessary restrictions. We pledge a government that works collaboratively across the aisle to address the issues that matter to the people of New Hampshire.




To promote the strength of our communities, the health of our families and a vibrant, growing economy, New Hampshire Democrats are committed to:


  • · Ensuring access to quality public education from early childhood through college.
  • · Providing access to affordable, comprehensive health care.
  • · Making affordable housing in a safe community accessible to all.
  • · Protecting the availability of clean, safe air to breathe and water to drink.
  • · Preserving our environment for future generations.
  • · Promoting energy efficiency, conservation and clean-energy technologies.
  • · Creating a favorable business environment with skilled workers and the infrastructure necessary to compete in a globalized economy.
  • · Protecting of the safety net for our most vulnerable citizens.
  • · Providing access to good jobs with fair competitive wages and benefits and safe working conditions.
  • · Protecting retirement and pension security so that every person can retire with dignity.
  • · Making New Hampshire an attractive home for our next generation.
  • · Investing in our rural and urban communities with recognition of the unique and important role each plays.
  • · Creating a safe, efficient, reliable, cost effective and interconnected public transportation system.
  • · Investing in our roads, bridges, ports, airports, water systems, utilities communication systems and broadband access as the foundation of a strong economy.
  • · Recognizing the sacrifices made by our veterans and their families and honoring our commitments to support them.
  • · Promoting a fiscally responsible budget and tax structure.
  • · Protecting the right of every eligible voter to vote.
  • · Protecting the constitutional rights of all without discrimination.
  • · Preserving New Hampshire’s First in the Nation Primary.    



Democrats have long valued education as the key to success, for individuals, for our state and for our nation. Democrats believe and are committed to quality public education that provides the foundation for a brighter future for all New Hampshire’s children by preparing them for participation in our society and to build a workforce equipped to meet the educational demands of the 21st century. Our state is strongest when our workers are trained with the knowledge and ingenuity to perform at the highest levels.

We support policies that ensure all children have equal access to high-quality public education so that each student can pursue affordable advanced education and learning that leads to full and prosperous lives without the burden of excessive debt. We honor and support our educators and applaud their contributions to our communities. We encourage the participation of students in mathematics, science, technology, the arts, history, reading and writing as fundamental tools for life. We support policies that ensure access to participation in public preschool, early intervention services and learning, and elementary, middle and secondary education for all New Hampshire students, including: setting high expectations for all students, eliminating the achievement gap, enforcement of anti-bullying policies and laws, education for healthy lifestyles, education that is evidenced-based and civic education so that future generations have the tools to participate as leaders. We believe every student who wants post-secondary education should have the opportunity, and we support affordable access to New Hampshire’s public community colleges, colleges, and universities. Education holds the promise for better jobs to keep our youth working, contributing and living in our New Hampshire communities.

Health Care


Democrats believe access to affordable, comprehensive health care is a right. We support policies that build on the Affordable Care Act to expand access, ensure reasonable coverage for services, increase transparency related to cost and quality, and control health care costs in New Hampshire. We believe Medicaid and other publicly-funded programs are critical to maintaining health and reducing health disparities across the State.  Democrats support coordinated health care that provides true parity for physical and mental health care and that also includes comprehensive services for substance abuse disorders. Democrats oppose the criminalization of people with mental illness or the transfer of the mentally ill who have not been charged with a crime to a prison setting.  Patients with mental illness should be treated  in a therapeutic environment not imprisoned.    Democrats believe in health care that is free from government interference in private medical decisions. We support access to the full range of reproductive health care, including contraceptive coverage and comprehensive sexual and reproductive health education, in a manner that is respectful, private, and safe. We support a public health infrastructure to promote the health and safety of our population and policies to address the growing shortage of providers in underserved communities and populations.

Democrats believe in a comprehensive approach to combat New Hampshire’s epidemic of drug and alcohol addiction. We recognize we must work collaboratively with advocates, law enforcement, first responders, prescribers, and people in recovery to improve and expand access to prevention, treatment, and recovery programs. We support increased funding and training in order to end this deadly epidemic.



Democrats believe affordable housing is essential to the growth of our economy, the strength of our families, and our communities. We support policies that ensure access to safe, affordable, accessible housing without discrimination.  We seek solutions for homelessness through a comprehensive approach that addresses its root causes. We support policies to assist struggling homeowners to refinance their mortgages when appropriate and prevent premature or improper foreclosures.


Environment and Agriculture



Democrats support responsible economic development that protects our environment and preserves our natural resources for future generations. Protection of our environment is critical to the survival of our planet, to the health and well-being of our residents, and to the quality of life and economy of our State. We support policies that protect land we can cultivate, water we can drink, air we can breathe, and streams and lakes we can fish. We will confront the real and imminent threat of climate change and pollution. We support the protection of our public parks and recreation areas which enable us all to enjoy the beauty of our state.   It is essential that all residents in every community have access to secure food resources. We value and support sustainable agriculture and the local family farms that feed New Hampshire and its economy. 


Public Safety  


Democrats believe public safety, emergency preparedness, and homeland security are vital to our ability to build and preserve strong communities. We support our fire, police, and emergency responders and honor their often unsung work. Proper staffing is essential to public safety. Police and fire departments should be staffed according to national standards to reduce response times. We believe in policies, including reasonable background checks, that appropriately balance the rights of individuals to responsibly own and use firearms, and to live in a community safe from violence. 

We support laws that curb violent and repeat offenders, reduce recidivism through prevention, education, treatment and rehabilitation, and maximize taxpayer resources. We believe the administration of our prison system is a public responsibility and function. Democrats support efforts to prioritize treatment and rehabilitation, -rather than incarceration, -- for low-level, nonviolent drug offenders. We recognize the collateral damage and harsh consequences of a conviction for the possession of marijuana  and support decriminalization for possession of a small amount.  



Transportation and Infrastructure


Democrats believe that a good transportation system promotes social and economic justice by allowing all the people of our state the ability to take advantage of opportunities regardless of their geographic location or economic circumstances.  New Hampshire’s transportation system should be comprehensive, safe, efficient, reliable and cost effective. We support development of multiple modes of interconnected affordable public transportation, including buses and rail service throughout the state including the north country. We believe investment in roads, bridges, ports, airports, public transportation, water systems, utilities, telecommunications technology and broadband access will provide the foundation we need to ensure a strong economy.



Democrats believe energy policies that promote energy efficiency, clean- energy technologies and energy conservation are essential to lowering energy costs, enhancing energy security and reliability and protecting our environment.  We recognize the value of achieving energy efficiency as an environmentally-friendly and cost effective means of meeting our future energy needs.  We recognize the need to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and support the increased use and development of sustainable, renewable and reliable sources balanced with appropriate safeguards to protect the health of our citizens, our economy and our environment.

Any major energy project must preserve our environmental heritage, utilize low impact technology, respect individual property rights, promote clean energy for New Hampshire’s use, protect existing businesses including tourism, and create jobs.

Preserving the Safety Net for Our Most Vulnerable Citizens


Democrats support policies that help enable vulnerable families and individuals to live, work and participate in their communities. We support community-based services for individuals with disabilities; physical and mental illnesses and low-income children, elderly residents including the increased availability and continued access to affordable, high quality childcare, programs that enable individuals with disabilities and low income parents to find sustainable employment at a living wage; and partnerships with communities to reduce substance abuse and delinquency rates. We recognize the ongoing impact of domestic and sexual violence and support programs to provide safety and assistance to victims and their families.


Retirement Security


Democrats believe every person deserves to retire with dignity. We believe that all residents of New Hampshire should have the opportunity to be financially secure as they reach retirement. We believe the promises of pension and medical benefits made to our public sector retirees should be honored. We believe that financially secure retirees benefit the State through their contributions to the economy and their volunteerism.

Honoring our Veterans 

As Democrats we honor our veterans and the innumerable sacrifices they and their families have made. As the only state in the United States that does not have a full service veteran’s hospital, we support the efforts of our congressional delegation to expand access to health care by contracting with local hospitals and doctors via “Veterans’ Choice”. Our nation must honor its commitments to veterans of all wars, including physical and mental healthcare, education, and disability support. We support policies that create employment opportunities for veterans and address the problem of homelessness. Democrats are committed to welcoming veterans back into our communities with support and honor.


Business Investment and Jobs

Democrats support policies that foster a vibrant and diverse business climate and economy. The foundation of a favorable business environment is a well-trained workforce with the skills necessary to compete in an increasingly globalized economy. We recognize and support policies that make it possible for businesses to thrive by building roads, highways, and bridges that allow the transport of goods throughout our state. We understand that access to broadband and telecommunication technologies is essential to our efforts to recruit businesses and promote entrepreneurship. Policies ensuring equitable access to credit are critical to promoting the growth of our businesses. Ensuring a robust workforce requires that New Hampshire offer affordable housing, access to health care and a good education in safe communities with clean air and water and we support policies that promote these essential elements of business development.



Job Security

We support our workers and policies that ensure fair, competitive and living wages and equal pay for equal work.  We support an increase in the minimum wage to ensure full time workers do not live in poverty. We support workers’ rights to organize and bargain collectively for wages, benefits, and safe and fair working conditions. We will fight for the rights of women and minorities in all aspects of society, including equal pay at work.  We recognize the negative impact of the growing wage gap and the resulting struggle of middle class workers to provide for the needs of their families and will work for policies to address this important concern. 

Job Education and Training



Democrats believe our residents are our most valuable economic asset. Skilled workers enrich our communities, ensure that our economy continues to grow and provides for a strong middle class. We ensure our workers have access to lifelong learning and affordable career, skilled trades and crafts training at high school, community colleges, universities as well as registered apprenticeship programs and other opportunities. We applaud the efforts of our community colleges and private business interests to forge partnerships that create apprenticeships and job opportunities.


Keeping and attracting the Next Generation



Democrats believe that retaining the next generation and attracting young families and individuals to our state are imperatives for ensuring our economic growth. Fundamentally, this means ensuring that we offer good jobs with family friendly workplace policies that enable our young people to climb the ladder of success while also growing healthy families.  We promote policies to ensure the availability of affordable housing and affordable childcare. We are committed to the investment in education and training necessary to allow the next generation to afford higher education without the burden of excessive debt. 


Rural Development  



Democrats believe that investing in our rural communities-especially the North Country-builds a sustainable economy and vigorous middle class. We support the building and maintenance of our infrastructure, including roads, bridges, water, sewer, renewable energy, telecommunications, and broadband technologies. We support expanding access to capital for rural entrepreneurs, rural businesses, and farms. We will continue to push for rural health care systems as they are critical for sustaining a healthy workforce and a growing middle class. We vigorously support investing in our local and regional food systems which provide access to fresh and nutritious food which benefit our citizens and fuel our local communities.

Urban Development


Democrats recognize the important role of our urban areas in providing job opportunities and fostering growth of diverse vibrant communities. We appreciate the unique challenges presented in urban settings and support policies to address important concerns such as the shortage of affordable housing, the need for greater access to public transportation, homelessness, inclusive integrated population and public safety. We embrace the growing diversity of our urban areas and the arts, cultural and economic benefits it provides. 


Voting Rights and Democracy


Democrats seek to secure the right to vote and to broaden voter participation, not restrict it through voter identification laws or measures that are aimed at preventing students, the elderly, voters with disabilities, or minorities from exercising their constitutional right to vote. Democrats believe that voting is a right and responsibility and not a privilege, and that every step should be taken to ensure that all eligible individuals vote in every election. This means that registration must be made as easy as possible to include automatic registration and the continuation of same day registration. Polls must be safe and accessible. No eligible voter may be denied access to the polls, and every vote should be counted.  We will explore other options to expand voter access including “no excuse” absentee voting.

First in the Nation Primary


We are proud to support and defend New Hampshire’s first in the nation primary and will fight to protect this important status.

Working Together to Protect our Constitutional Freedom for All


Democrats believe in basic protections and security for all people in our state, and that everyone should be free from discrimination including in employment, housing, education, and public accommodations. We are committed to full inclusion for all residents, and encourage initiatives to remove barriers to equal opportunity. We welcome any and all to our state and communities, including new Americans. New Hampshire Democrats believe in communities of citizens caring for and about each other, and support equitable treatment for all.

Democrats believe in working cooperatively whenever possible with Independents, Libertarians, and Republicans – our neighbors and friends – to move New Hampshire forward. When we disagree we do so with respect.  Democrats oppose discrimination in all its forms and do not divide the State along lines of race, religion, disability, immigration status, national origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression. 

Fairness and Justice


Democrats believe in equal justice under the law. We support full, fair, and timely access to our courts, both criminal and civil, and in the protection of the constitutional right to a trial by jury. We oppose unreasonable bail for the indigent and the incarceration due to an inability to pay bail or criminal fines. We recognize the ongoing impact violent crime has on victims, and that justice delayed is justice denied.  Consistent with Part 1, Article 18 of the New Hampshire Constituion which states “the true design of all punishments being to reform, not to exterminate mankind,” the Democratic party supports the repeal of capital punishment in our state.


Fiscal Responsibility 


Democrats believe government provides essential services to our citizenry. These services include the rule of law, the health and safety of our residents, consumer protection, the protection of our environment, public education and the physical infrastructure necessary to maintain a robust economy and expand employment opportunities. Democrats have worked to ensure these services are provided as cost-effectively as possible in order to avoid downshifting costs to the overburdened local property taxpayer.  The budget not only must reflect the true costs of operating an effective and efficient government but also must be supported by sufficient revenues and honest revenue estimates. It is the New Hampshire way to take a hard look at all reasonable revenue solutions while respecting both the will of the people and the constitutional requirement of fair and equal taxation. Democrats are committed to engaging New Hampshire residents in an effort to develop fiscally sound, transparent and accountable approaches to a balanced budget designed to serve the needs of our residents and our economy.

Respectfully submitted,

The 2016 New Hampshire Democratic Party Platform Committee.

Cinde Warmington, Chair

Sen. Donna Soucy, Co-Chair

Rep. Cindy Rosenwald, Co-Chair

Rep. Mary Heath

Hon. Melanie Levesque 

Rep. Latha Mangipudi 

Amy Kennedy

2018 New Hampshire Democratic Party Platform Committee



  1. I.  Platform Committee Charge



The New Hampshire Democratic Platform Committee is charged with proposing a State Party Platform which reflects the consensus of New Hampshire Democrats on values that bind all of us together.   


  1. II.  Overview: Platform Process



  1. 1.         The Platform Committee holds hearings throughout New Hampshire to consult broadly with New Hampshire Democrats on what planks should be included in the 2018 Party Platform. The Committee will also accept written comments  (see delivery methods below).  All New Hampshire Democrats are encouraged to weigh-in.
  1. 2.         After closing the hearing process on April 27th, 2018, the Committee will prepare and publish a draft Platform on the NHDP website on May 14th, 2018.  At this point, the Platform will be open to amendments. All proposed amendments must be in writing.
  1. 3.          Registered NH Democrats who wish to submit an amendment to the draft Platform must do so during the amendment period which shall start after publication on May 14th, 2018 and continue through 5:00 PM on May 21st, 2018 (see Amendment Procedure below).
  1. 4.         After the closure of the amendment period, the Platform Committee will meet to vote on the disposition of all proposed amendments.
  1. 5.         The proposed Platform will be published on June 11th, 2018, ten business days before the State Convention.
  1. 6.         The Platform Committee Chair or Co-chair will present the Platform at the State Convention on June 23rd, 2018. 

III.  Hearing Procedure




  1. 1.         Democrats are invited to attend open hearings around the state to provide representatives of the Platform Committee with comments on what the Platform should include.  The 2016 Platform is available on the NHDP website for reference and will be available at all hearings.  The hearings are listening sessions for Platform Committee members.  If necessary to insure that all speakers are heard, the Platform Committee may limit the amount of time each speaker will be allowed. 
  1. 2.         Proposed planks must address State of New Hampshire matters.  Federal matters will be referred to the Resolutions Committee.
  1. 3.         The Committee requests that any proposed planks be in writing delivered to one of the hearings, or delivered to the State Party.  The Committee urges plank proponents to consider the current platform’s style, tone, and length in proposing amendments as the Committee strives to make the Platform a user-friendly document for our candidates and the voters of New Hampshire.



  1. IV.  Amendment Procedure



Amendments will be considered by the Platform Committee at a scheduled meeting during which the Committee will determine the disposition of each amendment.  Action by the Committee will be by a majority of members present and voting.  If the Platform Committee votes not to accept an amendment, a second vote of members present and voting will be taken to determine if the amendment should be voted upon at the State Convention.  A vote of 5 members of the Platform Committee present and voting will be required for the amendment to be referred for consideration at the State Convention. 

Amendments that address federal issues do not qualify for inclusion in the Platform and will be referred to the Committee on Resolutions for disposition.  An amendment referred to the Committee on Resolutions shall be regarded as finally disposed of for purposes of the Platform Committee. The Platform Committee may dispose of amendments that are not submitted in compliance with these rules, are repetitious, disproportionate in length, stylistically incongruous, or not designed to advance the principles of the New Hampshire Democratic Party. 


From May 14, 2018 through 5 PM on May 21st, written amendments to the draft Platform may be submitted by any one of the following methods:

Standard Mail or Delivery:  NH Democratic Party

                                                Attn:  Platform Committee

                                                105 North State Street

                                                Concord, NH 03301

Fax:                                        603-225-6797, Attn: Platform Committee

E-mail:                                    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Attn: Platform Committee

  1. 1.          Amendment submissions should specify the plank of the Platform to be amended or note that the amendment is proposed as a new plank.
  1. 2.         The written submission must identify the proponent of the amendment and the fact that the proponent is a registered New Hampshire democrat.
  1. V. Members of the 2018 Platform Committee


Cinde Warmington , Chair

Representative Cindy Rosenwald, Co-chair

Senator Donna Soucy, Co-chair

Gene Martin (Manchester)

Ken Roos (Concord)

Gerri Cannon (Somersworth)

Laura O'Neill (Manchester)

Dan Chartrand (Exeter)

Meredith Shevitz (Manchester)

Susan Moore (Franconia)

Michelle Moge  (Derry)

Michael Strand (Peterborough)

Shoshana Kelly (Nashua)

Dario Scalco (Manchester)

Zandra Rice-Hawkins (Goffstown)

Maggie Rice (Keene)