In Case You Missed It, InDepthNH covered a roundtable meeting yesterday hosted by Seacoast business leaders that tore into the NH GOP state government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and how their actions during that time harmed both business and the public at large. Marshall Jespersen, chief executive officer of International Cars LTD Inc., who hosted the meeting, said the NH GOP’s politicization of COVID-19 treatments was a driving force in the damage to New Hampshire businesses.
“Rather than saying ‘we are in it for the public good,’ it became political with some saying ‘you don’t need to do it,'” Jespersen said, referring to the NH GOP’s attacks on the COVID-19 vaccine. “It absolutely hurt people,.”
Jespersen said that while none of his employees died as a result of the pandemic, relatives of those who did worked for him did die, which sparked a discussion of how the pandemic killed 2,457 New Hampshire residents and made 303,472 ill as of Thursday.
State Senator Dr. Tom Sherman (D-Rye), — who attended the roundtable alongside State Senator David Watters (D-Dover) and State Representative Debra Altschiller (D-Straham) — said upcoming legislation by the NH GOP would make the New Hampshire business climate even more fraught going forward.
“We are about to get a slew of bills next week that will take away what you did to save your business,” Sherman said, adding that House bills passed recently are coming to the Republican-controlled Senate with measures meant to take business owners’ rights to keep employees safe by allowing them to require vaccinations.