Karen Testerman has announced that she will be running in the GOP primary for Governor of New Hampshire in 2020. In her campaign launch announcement, she promised to allow business owners and employees to decide for themselves which risks to take, drawing a clear distinction between her and current Governor Chris Sununu.
According to the Testerman campaign press release, “Franklin City Councilor, former Merrimack County Republican Chair and radio host, Karen says, “enough is enough. It’s time to make New Hampshire Free Again.” The founder of the family, faith and freedom organization, Cornerstone Policy Research, claims that “every family member who brings home a paycheck is essential. The Governor is drunk with power …he picks and chooses who should open and micro manages what procedures must be followed.”
While Sununu has money and name recognition, his handling of COVID-19 has cost him many allies, though most Republican infighting has remained out of public view, according to inside sources. Although NH was among the states least affected by COVID-19, Sununu restricted the economy significantly, causing many people to lose their jobs. Without any legislation being passed, the governor closed down a large part of the economy. Over the past few months, the state’s unemployment increased from under 1,000 to over 36,000 workers which is around 20%. Former Republican backers of Sununu believe that he went too far and damaged the economy too much, disregarding the legislature and the economic freedom that the ‘Live Free or Die state cherishes.
Many conservatives who oppose the lockdown feel that Sununu forced nearly every business to shut down or restrict their activity significantly, harming our economy. Even now, weeks after states like Georgia and Florida have totally reopened, the governor still will not allow gyms in the rural state of New Hampshire to function normally. Much like Trump’s recent tweet, it seems that Sununu believes that he runs the NH economy, which could cost him some libertarian conservative votes.
Testerman has been involved in conservative activism for decades and currently serves on the Franklin City Council. Her husband currently serves as a State Rep. In 2000, Testerman founded NH Cornerstone, a pro-freedom, conservative non-profit. Today, the organization is one of the influential conservative groups in New Hampshire.
Testerman believes in a free market, low taxes, gun rights, and respect for families and cultural values, according to her press release. On September 8th, Republican voters will be able to choose between Sununu, Testerman, and Nobody as their next Governor.