New Vermont Governor, a Trump Critic, Pledges to Strive for Unity | NECN
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New Vermont Governor, a Trump Critic, Pledges to Strive for Unity

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Phil Scott, a Republican who had rebuked Donald Trump during the presidential primary and campaign, says that as governor, he hopes to unite Vermont's citizens. (Published Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016)

    Vermont's newly-elected Republican governor, Phil Scott, said he will be able to put aside past criticism of President-elect Donald Trump and strive toward unity following a divisive period in national politics.

    On the campaign trail, Governor-elect Scott had called out Trump, describing some of the presidential candidate's messages as incendiary or rude. Scott supported Ohio Gov. John Kasich for president.

    After the central Vermont businessman and stock car racer managed to speed past Democrat Sue Minter on Election Day, Scott promised he will work toward unifying people as a governor during Trump's presidency.

    "I can work with anybody. We'll be OK," Scott told reporters. "I'm going to respect the office and we'll continue to work for whatever benefit we can for Vermont. There's a tremendous amount of dysfunction on the federal level, as we know. All's I can say is we will do our very best to act appropriately here. I'll treat people with respect, I'll treat them the way I want to be treated and I'm sure we'll find common ground."

    Minter praised Scott's positive vision and leadership style in her concession speech Tuesday night.

    "We can still disagree without being disagreeable," Minter said in her speech at the Vermont Democratic Party headquarters on election night.

    As for whether Vermont would legalize recreational marijuana now that the neighboring state of Massachusetts is going that way, Governor-elect Scott said he would "never say never."

    First, however, Scott said he would have to be assured that edible forms of the drug, safety measures, and the tax structures of retail operations could be appropriately handled. Scott said he thinks it would be best to potentially follow other states' leads on the matter, and learn from their mistakes.

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