Executive Councilor David Wheeler, an incumbent Families First Pledge signer who has more than lived up to his promise already, is running for a well-deserved re-election in Executive Council District 5.
Councilor Wheeler, the most conservative member of the Executive Council, led the fight to defund Planned Parenthood in the just-finished biennium. Councilor Wheeler was able to help prevent taxpayer dollars from being used by Planned Parenthood by rejecting a contract between the State Department of Health and Human Services and the abortion factory. Despite his best legal efforts, the Obama Administration unlawfully gave Planned Parenthood a sole-source contract for over-priced, taxpayer-funded birth control and the Board of Pharmacy illegally granted Planned Parenthood a license to distribute abortion drugs in New Hampshire. If reelected, Burton said that he would exert pressure on the state’s Health and Human Services Commissioner to follow the law and use other Executive Council tools to hold the department accountable. In the meantime, he said he would focus on a search for a pro-life commissioner to eventually replace the current one.
Additionally, Councilor Wheeler led the fight against two circuit court justices and the governor’s Supreme Court Nominee Justice James Bassett, who has a record of being pro-choice and anti-gun. While Wheeler’s actions certainly highlighted the importance of the Executive Council, they also highlighted the need to elect conservative councilors. Since only one other councilor supported Councilor Wheeler in his effort to decline the governor’s nominees, and three of five councilors are needed to reject an appointment, the nominations were successful. Councilor Wheeler noted, however, that anyone the Executive Council could hire, the Council can fire. Going forward, Wheeler hopes to be joined by Robert Burns and Michael Tierney so that the three of them can more effectively hold the governor and the rest of the government in check.
Upon reelection, Wheeler said he would work with the Legislature to encourage spending restraint and, in particular, he said he would work to prevent the state from accumulating more debt. Under control of liberals in Concord, the Legislature increased the state’s debt by more than 33 percent in four years. Councilor Wheeler said he would encourage more debt payments to protect the state’s bond rating. Additionally, since every spending contract has to be approved by the Executive Council, Councilor Wheeler said councilors are in a unique position to put the brakes on if the Legislature gets out of control. This, in turn, helps families retain more of their hard-earned dollars, because “low taxes are the result of low spending,” as Gov. Thomson once said.
As an advocate for the self-defense inherent in gun ownership, Councilor Wheeler said he was proud to be a part of the effort to commute Ward Bird’s sentence. Bird was convicted of felony criminal threatening for showing his gun to a trespasser to get the person to leave his property who had previously refused. The governor vetoed the Executive Council’s effort to pardon Bird, but Wheeler and the other councilors were able to work out a compromise deal to commute his sentence. Wheeler said he believes he was able to “right a wrong” through this effort.
Executive Council District 5 includes the communities of Fitzwilliam, Jaffrey, Richmond, Rindge, Swanzey, Troy, Dunbarton, Amherst, Antrim, Bennington, Brookline, Deering, Francestown, Greenfield, Greenville, Hillsborough, Hollis, Hudson, Litchfield, Lyndeborough, Mason, Merrimack, Milford, Mont Vernon, Nashua, New Boston, New Ipswich, Peterborough, Sharon, Temple, Weare, Wilton and Windsor.