Casey McDermott | New Hampshire Public Radio

Casey McDermott

Investigative Data Reporter/Editor

Credit John W. Hession

Casey McDermott covers politics and policy, with a focus on data and accountability reporting.

Prior to joining NHPR, Casey worked at The Concord Monitor and held internships at ProPublica, the Student Press Law Center and the Chronicle of Higher Education. 

She studied journalism and sociology at Penn State but spent most of her days (and nights) in the newsroom of the independent student newspaper, The Daily Collegian. The Collegian was recognized nationally for its work during Casey's time as its managing editor and editor-in-chief.

Dan Tuohy | NHPR

Editor's note: This story was updated to reflect changes UNH made, after this piece was first published, to how it publicized the absentee voting events.

University of New Hampshire students will be able to register and vote absentee on campus in October. It's part of a strategy to cut down on crowding and long lines at Durham's polling place, which is often one of the busiest in the state during high-turnout elections. 

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The November election is front and center on a lot of people's minds right now — not least of all because President Trump has recently declined to commit to a peaceful transition of power if he loses the election. He has also, without evidence, questioned the legitimacy of the election itself.

But here in New Hampshire, there's another battle playing out in court that could have ramifications for how and when voters cast their ballots in November, and how those ballots are counted.

Cori Princell, NHPR

Community leaders in Manchester are hoping to recruit more bilingual people to work at the polls in the upcoming election.

This comes after the city’s Multicultural Advisory Council asked the state to publish voting instructions in Spanish, Nepali, French and other languages spoken by New Hampshire's growing immigrant and refugee communities.

Dan Tuohy / NHPR

Looking ahead to November, some New Hampshire pollworkers are warning that delays are in store if the state doesn’t grant them more leeway in processing absentee ballots before Election Day.

Annie Ropeik, NHPR

Even before the polls opened on Election Day, we knew New Hampshire was poised for record-breaking absentee ballot numbers. Now, we have the data to better understand how expanded absentee eligibility affected voting patterns in the September state primary.

Cori Princell, NHPR

Over the past few months, the New Hampshire Secretary of State’s office has told members of the public to turn to official sources for the most reliable guidance on how to vote — especially as the state’s election process has adapted to COVID-19.

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President Trump's re-election campaign and the Republican National Committee can intervene in a lawsuit challenging New Hampshire's COVID-19 voting procedures, a judge has ruled.

The campaigns will join New Hampshire state attorneys who oppose further changes to absentee ballot rules for the November election.

Dan Tuohy, NHPR

Tuesday is going to be a learning experience for voters and election officials alike, as New Hampshire navigates its first election of the COVID-19 era.

Dan Tuohy/NHPR

President Trump's re-election campaign and the Republican National Committee are asking to intervene in a lawsuit challenging New Hampshire’s COVID-19 voting procedures. If their request is approved, they would join a team of state attorneys trying to stave off changes to New Hampshire’s absentee registration and voting rules ahead of the November general election.

Annie Ropeik, NHPR

With a week to go before the state primary election, New Hampshire is launching a new absentee voting system meant to allow more voters to cast a ballot privately and independently. 

Courtesy of Dianne Connelly

Editor's note: Scroll to the end of this story to read our response to N.H. Health and Human Services Commissioner Lori Shibinette's recent statements on NHPR’s reporting on COVID-19 and the state's long-term care facilities.

The last time Dianne Connelly hugged her mother, Anita Goodwin, was March 13. Had she known what the next few months would bring, she would have held on a little bit longer.

Credit Courtesy Kathleen O'Donnell

The New Hampshire Attorney General is investigating how a recent mailer from the state Republican party ended up getting sent to approximately 50,000 residents — including some deceased people who are no longer on local voter rolls — with the wrong return address.

N.H. Secretary of State

New Hampshire voters have already requested four times as many absentee ballots for the September primary as they cast in the same election in 2016, according to state officials. 

NH.gov/COVID19

Newly released state data shows Black women in New Hampshire have been disproportionately impacted by COVID-19, echoing patterns seen across the country in the last few months of the pandemic. 

Credit Courtesy Kathleen O'Donnell

The New Hampshire Democratic Party is asking the state to pursue a “full investigation” into a recent batch of erroneous absentee voter registration mailers sent by the New Hampshire Republican Party.

Courtesy of Kathy Stroup, who received one of these mailers in Lee

Editor's note: This post has been updated to clarify that the mailers included requests for absentee ballot registration paperwork, not requests for absentee ballots.

In the years since she lost her 22-year-old son, Tyler, Kelly Simpson has learned to steel herself when opening the mailbox.

“Every now and again a piece of mail comes for him,” she said, “and it takes my breath away.”

But Simpson wasn’t at all prepared for what arrived in Tyler’s name this weekend, seven years after his death: an “official absentee voter registration packet request” from the New Hampshire Republican Party.

Britta Greene for NHPR

This story has been updated with additional information.

More than 330,000 surgical masks, 8,200 jugs of sanitizing wipes, 5,300 face shields and 3,200 sneeze guards are on their way to local pollworkers across New Hampshire in the coming weeks, according to a new memo from the Secretary of State's office. 

NHPR

An emergency stipend program meant to address the staffing crisis at New Hampshire's long-term care facilities amid the coronavirus pandemic lapsed at the end of last week.

But advocates say the need for the stipends is still acute, as facilities across the state struggle to hire and retain the workers they need to adequately care for their residents.

This story has been updated with additional information.

New Hampshire's state epidemiologist is urging both pollworkers and voters to wear masks at all times inside the state's polling places if they show up for in-person balloting for this fall's elections.

Boston Globe

A farmhouse in Millsfield believed to be the birthplace of New Hampshire's midnight voting tradition is among the newest additions to the state's register of historic places, the Division of Historical Resources announced Tuesday.

Annie Ropeik / NHPR

New Hampshire's long-term care ombudsman is sounding the alarm about the harm that prolonged isolation is inflicting on residents of the state's long-term care facilities.

Michael Brindley/NHPR

Gov. Chris Sununu has vetoed bills to create a paid family leave program, to expand absentee voting and to provide relief for people who have trouble making housing payments due to COVID-19, continuing a string of vetoes that has already set a record for a New Hampshire governor.

Three New Hampshire voters and a coalition of groups who advocate for people with disabilities are suing the state over its COVID-19 absentee registration and voting procedure. They allege that the state is denying voters with disabilities the equal opportunity to cast a private, independent absentee ballot without extra assistance.

justgrimes / Flickr Creative Commons

New Hampshire's pollworkers will be outfitted with masks, face shields, gloves and gowns for the September primary and November general election — but local officials will need to reuse some of those items, including face masks, in both elections, according to new guidance from the Secretary of State.

Dan Tuohy / NHPR

Any eligible New Hampshire voter who wants to cast an absentee ballot can do so this fall due to COVID-19 — and election officials across the state are preparing to process a potentially massive increase in absentee ballot requests in the months ahead.

OSHA

Hackett Hill Center, a skilled nursing facility in Manchester, is facing a federal workplace safety investigation into the recent death of an employee. 

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New Hampshire should distribute protective gear to all of its polling places, reimburse municipalities for increased absentee balloting costs and take a more proactive approach to voter education, according to a state committee tasked with evaluating how to plan for fall elections amid COVID-19.

NHPR Staff

The Libertarian Party of New Hampshire is suing the governor and the state's top election official for not adjusting ballot access requirements amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dan Tuohy / NHPR

Two Manchester hospitals at the center of New Hampshire’s COVID-19 response have identified new outbreaks among patients and staff not directly connected to their coronavirus treatment units.

justgrimes / Flickr Creative Commons

The American Civil Liberties Union and the New Hampshire Democratic Party are withdrawing a federal lawsuit against a new state residency law that, they argued, would infringe on voting rights. 

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