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Garry Rayno's State House Dome: Senate's change in leadership
Under pressure from many angles over potential conflicts of interest between the two jobs, Bragdon announced he would give up the Senate's top spot. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Morse announced he would seek to take it over.
The political atmosphere will likely be different with Morse at the helm.
Will Republican Sens. Nancy Stiles of Hampton, Odell of Lempster and several others continue to be willing to fall on the sword over Medicaid expansion after what happened last week? That bears watching.
The next session should be an opportunity for Democrats and Republicans to put together coalitions. Coming into an election year with several key senators eyeing higher office, everyone is going to want something they can show their constituents.
The next Senate president will be the eighth since 1998; Clesson "Junie" Blaisdell, Beverly Hollingworth, Arthur Klemm, Thomas Eaton, Ted Gatsas, Sylvia Larsen and Bragdon have come and gone in that period.
So far, the commission has heard from Health and Human Services; the Insurance Department; the National Governors Association; the National Conference of State Legislators; and, last week, one group opposed to expansion, two in favor and one neutral.
But other members believe everyone will have an opportunity to participate before the process is completed, by Oct. 15.
As one member said, there is a long way to go before the committee begins deciding what to recommend to lawmakers.
Burton's 10-stop tour will begin at 8 a.m. at Laconia Airport and end at the same spot 12 hours later.
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