I’ve been privileged to serve the great state of New Hampshire for many years, both as its longest-serving Senate President and now as a candidate for governor. Throughout my time in public service, one thing has always remained constant: my unwavering commitment to the principles on which our nation was founded.

One of these fundamental principles is the separation of powers, enshrined in Article I, Section 8 of the United States Constitution. This constitutional cornerstone vests in Congress the exclusive power to declare war. Our Founding Fathers considered this power essential to our republic, ensuring that the weighty decision of going to war would be made collectively by the people’s representatives.

Regrettably, in recent years, we’ve seen a troubling trend of this constitutional responsibility being delegated to the executive branch. Our Constitution isn’t just a set of guidelines; it’s the very bedrock of our republic. It’s our duty to defend and uphold its principles, especially when they face challenges.

That’s why I’m wholeheartedly endorsing HB 229-FN, also known as the “Defend The Guard Act.” This legislation is a vital step in reinforcing the constitutional framework that our nation’s founders meticulously crafted. Its purpose is clear: to ensure that our New Hampshire National Guard is only called into active federal military service when there’s an official declaration of war by Congress or an explicit action pursuant to Article I, Section 8, Clause 15 of the United States Constitution authorizing its deployment.

The urgency of this legislation has become increasingly apparent. Recent events have underscored the importance of preserving the integrity of our constitutional checks and balances. We must always prioritize the safety and well-being of our National Guard, whether here in New Hampshire or across our nation. HB 229-FN is a crucial measure to ensure that its deployment aligns with constitutional processes.

I take pride in being the only gubernatorial candidate to support this essential legislation. If elected governor, I won’t hesitate to sign the Defend The Guard Act into law. However, I’m hopeful that our current legislature and Gov. Chris Sununu will pass it and make it law this year. I firmly believe that defending the principles upon which our nation was founded is not just a responsibility; it’s an imperative.

I call upon my colleagues in the state Senate to join me in endorsing HB 229-FN. Together, let’s honor our Constitution, safeguard the well-being of our National Guard, and ensure that sending our brave men and women in uniform into action remains a solemn decision guided by the highest law of the land.

The principles that guided our founders aren’t mere words on parchment; they’re the cornerstone of our republic. Let us unite in our commitment to preserve and protect them.