Politics

Political news from New Hampshire Public Radio, from the State House to the First in the Nation Primary.

Former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder says his fight against gerrymandering is a partisan attempt at good governing. Holder was in New Hampshire Friday, promoting what he calls "fair redistricting."

Dan Tuohy / NHPR

In this Race for the 1st conversation, Laura talks with Chris Pappas, a Democrat running in the closely watched race for New Hampshire's 1st Congressional District. 

Pappas is the owner of the Puritan Backroom Restaurant, a restaurant in Manchester, and is a member of the N.H. Executive Council. He was formerly a state representative, and Treasurer of Hillsborough County. 

Our Race for the First conversations will focus on the issues at the forefront in the CD1 race, including opioids, guns, veterans, and how each candidate plans to stand out in a crowded race. 

The chairman of the New Hampshire Democratic Party has announced his support for including marijuana legalization in the party's platform.

Ray Buckley says he joins Molly Kelly and Steve Marchand, the two candidates for the Democratic nomination for governor, in support of legalization, regulation and taxation. He says he's willing to co-sponsor an amendment and vote for the platform change at the party convention June 23.

Michael Brindley/NHPR

The State Supreme Court is still deciding whether or not it will weigh in on the constitutionality of a newly passed voter residency bill. But it now has about 175 pages of outside input to help it decide whether the bill should become law — and whether it should even weigh in at all.

Jason Moon for NHPR

With lawmakers gone from Concord, the 2018 political season is now officially on, and one New Hampshire politician making a quick shift to campaign mode is Gov. Chris Sununu. 

New Hampshire’s first Republican governor in more than a decade is hitting the trail with a mixed record at the Statehouse but plenty of enthusiasm.

Josh Rogers for NHPR

Businesses that focus on generating human organs won't have to pay state business taxes for ten years under a bill signed into law today by Governor Chris Sununu. Backers of the bill, including companies set to benefit, say it could mean great things for New Hampshire. 

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

The issue of voter fraud in New Hampshire — or a lack thereof — was front and center at a meeting of New Hampshire’s Ballot Law Commission in Concord. The big takeaway?  Top state officials haven’t found any evidence that it’s running rampant in New Hampshire’s elections.

Lauren Chooljian for NHPR

Senator Maggie Hassan said Tuesday she believes student activism will be what tips the scales in the gun debate and pushes Congress to pass gun control legislation. 

Josh Rogers for NHPR

Second District Congresswoman Ann McLane Kuster is promoting the latest version of what she calls her Jobs and Opportunity Agenda.

Kuster talked up ways to develop the state's workforce during a visit to Nashua Community College. 

NHPR Staff

Top state officials will give an overview of recent efforts to investigate potential voter fraud and other election violations at a meeting of the New Hampshire Ballot Law Commission in Concord.

NAMI New Hampshire

When we think about gun deaths in the United States, we usually think about mass shootings, like the one last week in Santa Fe, Texas -- tragedies that have deeply divided the country.

But in New Hampshire, most gun deaths are suicides.

Daniel S. Hurd via Flickr CC

New Hampshire House and Senate negotiators have reached agreement on a bill that would boost pay for state workers, end litigation with New Hampshire's hospitals, fix decaying bridges and fatten the state's rainy day fund.

And top lawmakers are confident the bill will win passage next week.

The $102 million dollar package pays for what negotiators considered musts: the new state employees contract and the Medicaid settlement.

But it also spends on a few pet initiatives, like recovery friendly workplaces. Governor Sununu wanted that one.

via Twitter

Marty Boldin, Gov. Chris Sununu’s top drug policy advisor, has been on paid administrative leave since the end of April.

But at least one month before that, concerns about Boldin’s behavior came to the attention of the state Department of Health and Human Services, according to interviews and an email obtained by NHPR.

Wikimedia

A controversial bill to restrict residency rules for voting is on its way to the state Supreme Court for a review. The Executive Council voted along party lines on Wednesday to approve Gov. Chris Sununu’s request to ask the court to look into House Bill 1264’s constitutionality.

Emily Corwin for NHPR

Negotiators have reached agreement on a proposal to eliminate cash bail for most New Hampshire offenders. The plan won strong support from lawmakers but was reworked to address concerns of prosecutors and police.

Senate Bill 556 aimed to eliminate cash bail for people charged with misdemeanors so long as a judge ruled them not dangerous. In its current form, the elimination of bail with cash or conditions would only apply to Class B misdemeanors, crimes which carry no jail time.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

A pair of nearly identical bills to restrict residency requirements for voting coasted through the Republican-controlled Legislature this session.  But now, both are running into roadblocks near the finish line.

House Bill 372 and House Bill 1264 both aim to impose stricter residency standards for voting in New Hampshire by changing the state’s definition of who counts as a “resident.” 

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Lawmakers in the New Hampshire House and Senate will meet Tuesday to hash out differences over an $87 million dollar spending bill.

The plan would boost pay for state workers, settle a lawsuit with New Hampshire hospitals, and fix decaying bridges, among other things. 

Todd Bookman / NHPR

Governor Chris Sununu wants the New Hampshire Supreme Court to review whether proposed voting residency bills are constitutional.

But Representative David Bates, a Republican from Windham who sponsored one of the bills, contends the court is unlikely to intervene. He says the court declined last session to review a different voting bill, citing pending litigation.

Lincoln Soldati for Congress Facebook Page

In this Race for the 1st conversation, The Exchange on Monday interviews Lincoln Soldati, a Democrat running in the closely watched race for New Hampshire's 1st Congressional District. 

Soldati served nine terms as Strafford County Attourney, and has worked as a trial lawyer, teacher, and public servant. As Strafford County Attourney, he created the Victim Assistance protocol. Soldati is a U.S. Army veteran, and served from 1969 to 1971. 

Peter Biello / NHPR

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Steve Marchand rolled out a new plan designed to give New Hampshire politicians more incentive to raise campaign money from small-dollar, in-state campaign donations instead of wealthy donors, lobbyists and corporate PACs.

“If somebody’s unable to give at least $250 or more, generally you’re told by your campaign staff and advisers that they are not worth calling or spending time trying to get money from,” Marchand told reporters on a press call outlining his new plan.

We take a break from our Race for the 1st series to look at the candidates for Congressional District 2. Annie Kuster (D), the incumbent, will be challenged by Steve Negron, a State Representative from Nashua, VA whistleblower and physician Dr. Stewart Levenson of Hopkinton, and Captain Lynne Blankenbeker, who recently retired from a career as a military nurse and lives in Concord. Political reporter Paul Steinhauser joins us to discuss the race. 

Dan Tuohy / NHPR

The New Hampshire Senate approved an expansion to the state's education tax credit program Thursday.

Under the existing program, businesses in New Hampshire can get a tax break when they make a donation to scholarships that qualifying families can use for educational purposes including private school tuition and homeschooling.

Naomi Andrews

 

Retiring New Hampshire U.S. Rep. Carol Shea-Porter’s chief of staff is throwing her hat in the ring for her boss’ congressional seat. Democrat Naomi Andrews joins eight Democrats and three Republicans in the September primary. 

 

Andrews, who is from Epping, said in a campaign video (scroll down to watch it) that her experience working for Shea Porter has taught her how to win in this tough swing district. 

 

justgrimes / Flickr Creative Commons

One of two bills seeking to tighten New Hampshire’s residency standards for voting eligibility passed the State Senate on Wednesday after an hour-long debate during which Democrats accused Republicans of voter suppression and Republicans accused Democrats of promoting false narratives about what the legislation would actually do.

Courtesy, Human Society

The New Hampshire House on Wednesday approved an amended animal cruelty bill that backers say protects the due process rights of pet owners.

The bill, which passed the House on 222-111 vote, is substantially different than a Senate-backed bill, setting up a potential impasse on final legislation.

A bill that would have created a school choice program in New Hampshire based on education savings accounts was voted down in the House of Representatives on Wednesday.

The vote on SB 193 capped off a long and winding journey for a controversial piece of legislation that was originally introduced in January of 2017.

Given the deep field of candidates and its reputation as "the swingiest congressional district in the nation," New Hampshire’s 1st Congressional District has attracted most of the spotlight this year, when it comes to campaign fundraising or otherwise. But there’s also plenty of money flowing into the 2nd Congressional District race — most of it going through the campaign bank account of incumbent Congresswoman Annie Kuster.

via bruce2018.com

Another Republican is joining the crowded race for New Hampshire’s First Congressional District seat.

Hampton Falls businessman Bruce Crochetiere is selling himself to voters as a candidate who is “not even close” to being a politician.

“We don’t need to just promote another politician. We need a fresh voice from an outsider, a completely different kind of leadership,” Crochetiere says in a campaign video.

NHPR Staff

Governor Chris Sununu has promised to veto a bill that would abolish the death penalty in New Hampshire. But some of his fellow Republicans say ending capital punishment makes fiscal sense.

They're hoping that argument could, in part, help sway enough votes to overturn a veto.

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