Phil Scott

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RGA launches first ad supporting Phil Scott

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MONTPELIER — The Republican Governors Association wasted little time inserting itself into Vermont’s gubernatorial campaign, launching a television ad supporting Lt. Gov. Phil Scott in his race against Democrat Sue Minter. The RGA’s quick response — just hours after Scott was declared the GOP’s nominee over former Wall Street executive Bruce Lisman, is a sure sign that Republicans and Democrats are ready to spend big on the race. The RGA purchased the ad, titled “Back on Track,” through a super PAC it funds known as A Stronger Vermont. Reports were not yet filed with the Secretary of State’s Office Wednesday afternoon indicating how much the RGA is spending. The ad features a narrator saying Scott is “working hard to make Vermont better for everyone by working hand-in-hand with leaders of all parties.”

“As governor, Phil Scott will restore trust in state government, bring new jobs to Vermont, and focus on solving problems, not playing politics,” the female narrator says. Continue Reading →

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Scott cruises to GOP nomination

Republican gubernatorial candidate Phil Scott, and his wife Diana McTeague Scott, acknowledge the cheering crowd after Scott delivered his victory speech at the Vermont Granite Museum in Barre on Tuesday night. (Times Argus/Jeb Wallace-Brodeur)

MONTPELIER — Lt. Gov. Phil Scott easily won the Republican Party’s nomination for governor Tuesday, securing strong support across the state and surviving a months-long barrage of attack ads from rival Bruce Lisman that sought to paint Scott as an ineffective leader. The 58-year-old Scott, who is in his third term as lieutenant governor, has about 60 percent of the vote with 268 of 275 voting districts reporting, according to unofficial results posted by the Secretary of State’s Office. Lisman has about 39 percent. The Associated Press called the race for Scott at 9:21 p.m. and Lisman conceded the race shortly thereafter. “This campaign shows negative campaigning does not work in Vermont,” Scott told his supporters at a party in Barre to watch the election returns. Continue Reading →

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Story + Video: Scott: A career of building coalitions

Lt. Gov. Phil Scott

MONTPELIER — Phil Scott likes to tell people how, about 20 years ago now, he did not have a political bone in his body. He grew up in Barre and spent his adult life building a family, a career as a contractor, and a reputation as a race car driver. He takes great pride in his blue-collar roots. But when he started to see politics miring the Legislature, he decided to step up. That trajectory — serving in the Senate and then as lieutenant governor — has forced him to become the leader he felt Vermont needed then — and now. Continue Reading →

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Scott, Lisman, face off in PBS debate

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COLCHESTER — The two Republican candidates for governor had their first televised, head-to-head debate Monday night and sought to immediately air their grievances with each other, but were short on specific plans. Lt. Gov. Phil Scott and former Wall Street Executive Bruce Lisman used the hour-long Vermont PBS debate as a chance to highlight their ideas and contradict the assertions made by the other. But throughout the debate, neither ventured far from their broad policy ideas into specific plans. Both candidates offered spoke of using the office to revitalize Vermont’s economy. Curbing state spending and bringing it in line with the state’s economic growth was a broad goal set forth by both men. Continue Reading →

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Economists: state revenues to grow less than expected

Economists Tom Kavet, right, and Jeff Carr, left, present a new revenue forecast to the Emergency Board on Thursday, July 21. (VPB/Neal Goswami)

MONTPELIER — Economists for the Shumlin administration and Legislature issued a revised state revenue forecast for the current fiscal year Thursday that projects a total of $28 million less in revenue, but growth over the 2016 fiscal revenues. Tom Kavet and Jeff Carr, consulting economists for the administration and lawmakers, issued their revised revenue forecast Thursday to the state’s Emergency Board, which includes the governor and the four chairs of the Legislature’s money committees. Revenue for the state’s general fund was lowered by $21 million, while revenues for the transportation and education funds were lowered by $3.5 million and $3.4 million, respectively. Still, revenues are expected to grow above the 2016 fiscal year, which closed on June 30, both Kavet and Carr said. “The upturn continues, that’s the good news,” Carr told the Emergency Board. Continue Reading →

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Scott launches first TV ad in gubernatorial primary

Lt. Gov. Phil Scott

MONTPELIER — Republican Lt. Gov. Phil Scott has released his first television ad, calling out primary rival Bruce Lisman for “misleading” attacks. The 30-second Scott ad is the first in a series that will run through the Aug. 9 primary, according to the campaign. “What might pass for business as usual on Wall Street has never been in line with Vermont values,” Scott says at the outside. “While my opponent’s misleading ads are disappointing, Vermonters know the truth.”

Scott also highlights his small business, a construction firm, in the ad. Continue Reading →

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Story-Video-Podcast: Lisman touts career, new ideas

Bruce Lisman
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Listen to Lisman discuss the issues:

MONTPELIER — After a long and lucrative career on Wall Street, Bruce Lisman is looking to transition from high finance to politics in his bid for governor. The 69-year-old Burlington native is facing off in a Republican primary against Lt. Gov. Phil Scott, a popular politician with a nice-guy image. Despite having founded the advocacy group Campaign for Vermont in 2011 and serving as its voice and face, Lisman has faced a substantial disadvantage in name recognition. As a result, he has launched several television ads seeking to link Scott with Democratic Gov. Peter Shumlin, who is not seeking a fourth two-year term. For some, the commercials have come across as negative campaigning, but Lisman has maintained that they are contrast ads designed to show how Lisman would take Vermont in a new direction. Continue Reading →

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Candidates raise big bucks

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MONTPELIER — Candidates for Vermont’s top statewide offices have reported big fundraising hauls since March, led by Republican Bruce Lisman, a former Wall Street executive, who has contributed more than $1 million to his own campaign for governor. Republican Lt. Gov. Phil Scott reported Friday that he has raised $350,000 since the last reporting period on March 15. According to his campaign finance disclosure form filed with the secretary of state’s office Friday, Scott has spent about $250,000 in the past four months. Overall, Scott has raised about $860,000 and spent about $467,000. He has $370,000 cash on hand with less than a month to go before the Aug. Continue Reading →

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Poll gives Scott, Minter edge in primaries

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MONTPELIER — Sue Minter has a slight edge over gubernatorial primary rival Matt Dunne, according to a new poll commissioned and released Thursday by Energy Independent Vermont. The telephone poll of 600 Vermonters, which focuses on Vermonters’ opinions about climate change and efforts to combat it, also queried Vermonters’ on their choice for governor in both the Democratic and Republican Primaries. On the Democratic side, Minter, a former secretary of the Agency of Transportation, garnered the support of 36 percent of those who said they planned to vote in the Democratic primary. Dunne, a former state senator and Google executive, tallied 31 percent support. Peter Galbraith, a former diplomat and state senator had 8 percent support. Continue Reading →

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Candidates increase mass media expenditures

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MONTPELIER — Candidates for the state’s top two offices are ramping up spending on mass media as they look to reach voters and spread their message as the Aug. 9 primary approaches. State law requires candidates to report any spending of at least $500 on mass media activity within 45 days of an election. For the Aug. 9 primary, mandated reported began on June 25. Continue Reading →

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