Manchester, NH mayor moves toward gubernatorial bid as Sununu eyes White House

Manchester Mayor Joyce Craig on Monday took a key step toward running for governor of New Hampshire, announcing an exploratory committee led by prominent fellow Democrats. Craig, the first female mayor of the state’s largest city, had announced earlier this year that she wouldn’t be seeking a fourth term. In a statement Monday, she said has tackled serious challenges while putting families and residents first, including adding jobs and affordable housing units and reducing school class sizes and violent crime. NH GOP GOV. SUNUNU SAYS HE’S HAVING ‘CONVERSATIONS’ ABOUT 2024; GOV. NOEM WON’T RULE OUT A PRESIDENTIAL BID “As I’ve had discussions with local leaders across New Hampshire, it is increasingly clear that the same challenges we’re working to tackle in Manchester are seen in communities across the state,” she said. “As a mayor, I’ve collaborated with mayors and town and city officials to address these challenges – and we’ve made real progress. But there is a lack of support for cities and towns at the state level and I know we can do better.” The announcement comes as four-term Republican Gov. Chris Sununu is weighing a run for president. He easily won reelection in November after passing on a chance to run for U.S. Senate. LONGTIME SENATE DEMOCRAT BEN CARDIN WON’T SEEK RE-ELECTION Craig, a Manchester native, served on the city’s school board and board of alderman before being elected mayor in 2017. Her exploratory committee includes former Gov. John Lynch, former state Democratic Party chair Kathy Sullivan, Stonyfield Organic co-founder Gary Hirshberg along with elected officials, business owners and others. State Republican Party Chairman Chris Ager said voters are not keen on spreading what he called “Craig’s chaos” to the rest of the state. He accused her of blaming Sununu and Republican lawmakers for her own failures. “Joyce Craig has unequivocally failed Manchester during her time as Mayor and it is laughable that she wants to bring her disastrous policies to the corner office,” he said in a statement.
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