Coronavirus Coverage - NH Politics | New Hampshire Public Radio

Coronavirus Coverage - NH Politics

Dan Tuohy/NHPR

The New Hampshire House and Senate kept their social distance Wednesday as they met to take up bills vetoed by Gov. Chris Sununu earlier this year. The Democrat-controlled Legislature failed to override any of Sununu’s 22 vetoes.

Dan Tuohy/NHPR

President Trump returned to New Hampshire Friday night, fresh off the Republican National Convention, for a rally at Manchester Airport.

For the hundreds of supporters in attendance, the atmosphere was that of a festival. Many wore Trump-themed clothing. Others wore T-shirts celebrating right-wing figures ranging from Fox News host Tucker Carlson to Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro.

This story was with additional information after the New Hampshire Republican Party clarified its plans for correcting the mistake on its mailers. You can read the party's plan in full here.

Josh Rogers/NHPR

In a normal election year, a long-time New Hampshire Democratic activist like Bette Lasky might have been in the room when Joe Biden delivered his convention speech. But last week, Lasky was in a parking lot in Derry, watching Biden’s speech drive-in movie style, the candidate projected on a giant screen. As she stood by her car, Lasky looked into the darkening summer sky and noted how, for her, 2020 politics feel deeply unnatural.    

Weekly N.H. News Roundup: August 21, 2020

Aug 21, 2020

The Meet the Candidates series continues with Lynne Blankenbeker, Republican candidate for the second Congressional District.  NHPR’s Casey McDermott takes a look at preparations for the September primary and what the state is anticipating. We also visit with State Representative Denny Ruprecht who was tapped as a rising star to be a part of  the keynote address at the Democratic National Convention. And we go to Laconia, to learn about preparations for Laconia Motorcycle Week.

Air date: Friday, Aug. 21, 2020. 

Todd Bookman/NHPR

The Exchange continues its summer series of primary candidate interviews with Republican Lynne Blankenbeker. She's running in New Hampshire's 2nd Congressional District. Blankenbeker has served in the Middle East for the U.S. Air Force as an officer and trauma flight nurse, and later in the Navy Reserve Nurse Corps. She is an attorney and a former N.H. State Representative, and served as a healthcare policy advisor at the Pentagon.  As always, we welcome your questions - send them before the show to exchange@nhpr.org.

Air date: Friday, Aug. 21, 9-9:20 am

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Leading up to the 2020 New Hampshire presidential primary, NHPR tried something different: We invited you to tell us how we should cover the election. 

Michael Brindley / NHPR

High schools in New Hampshire are now required to grant credit for alternative programs approved by the state board of education or a local school board. The program, called 'Learn Everywhere,' has been the subject of heated debate for over a year.

Josh Rogers | NHPR

The Exchange continues its summer series of primary candidate interviews with Republican Matt Mowers. He's running in New Hampshire's 1st Congressional District. Mowers, who lives in Bedford, is a former executive director for the New Hampshire Republican Party. He worked as a state department official in the Trump administration. As always, we welcome your questions - send them before the show to exchange@nhpr.org.

Air date: Friday, Aug. 14, 9-9:20 am

Weekly N.H. News Roundup: Aug. 7, 2020

Aug 6, 2020

On the Weekly N.H. News Roundup, we'll speak with Executive Councilor and Democratic candidate for governor Andru Volinsky. We'll get his take on racial justice, handling the pandemic, and re-opening schools. Also, as the primary and general elections approach, are local polling places prepared to keep voters and poll workers safe? 

Air date: Friday, Aug 7, 2020

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. 

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This story is part of an NPR nationwide analysis of states' revenue and budgets during the pandemic.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Gov. Chris Sununu added to his record number of vetoes this legislative session Friday, rejecting bills dealing with energy policy, unemployment benefits and privacy laws. Here’s a rundown.

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.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

President Donald Trump's campaign announced it has postponed its rally Saturday in Portsmouth due to anticipated bad weather.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

President Donald Trump’s rally scheduled for Saturday in New Hampshire will take place amid a debate about political events and public health. And it comes as much of the country sees a surge in the number of coronavirus cases. 

Dan Tuohy | NHPR

Some city councilors in Portsmouth are pushing for a mandatory mask wearing ordinance ahead of President Trump's scheduled rally at the Pease Airport this weekend.

Councilor Deaglan McEachern said a mask requirement was already scheduled to come up for debate next week before the council. But with President Trump’s rally happening on Saturday, he’s now asking Mayor Rick Becksted to call a special meeting so the council can vote on the idea as soon as possible.

Brendan Wood / Creative Commons

New Hampshire’s utility consumer advocate wants more transparency and public input on plans to lift the state's ban on utility shutoffs this month.

In a new emergency petition, ratepayer advocate Don Kreis says the state's electric, water and gas utilities are reporting large swaths of customers who've held off paying their bills in the past few months.

Dan Tuohy / NHPR

The New Hampshire Legislature wrapped up business for the 2020 session Tuesday, marking the end of perhaps the most unusual legislative session in history, with the State House essentially closed since March and lawmakers conducting much of their work remotely.

James Gathany / CDC

A group of New Hampshire doctors wants two Republican U.S. Senate candidates to walk back recent statements opposing mandatory vaccinations.

Josh Rogers / NHPR

In a busy and socially distanced session, the full New Hampshire Senate returned to Concord Tuesday for the first time since COVID-19 closed the State House in March.

While the subject matter of the legislation at hand may have seemed familiar – environmental policy, a proposed minimum wage increase, and health care bills – the setting and procedure were far from normal.

Josh Rogers, NHPR

The New Hampshire House met at the University of New Hampshire’s Whittemore Center Thursday, its first full session since the COVID-19 pandemic arrived in the state and the first outside of the State House in Concord since the Civil War.

JOE GRATZ / FLICKR CREATIVE COMMONS

Democratic state lawmakers will get another hearing in a lawsuit over Gov. Chris Sununu’s authority to distribute federal coronavirus aid.

The complaint dates to mid-April. It argues that the legislature should get a say in Sununu's spending during the state of emergency.  

Superior Court Judge David Anderson previously denied the lawmakers’ request for an emergency injunction to stop that spending.

NHPR Photo

The Rules Committee of the New Hampshire House of Representatives has blocked a push by Republicans to propose a freeze on business tax rates, setting the stage for a potential standoff over whether the House can act on any bills when it meets June 11th.

Donna Hiltz / NHPR

Members of Congress from New Hampshire are joining a call for clean energy workforce investment as part of the economic recovery from COVID-19.

U.S. Rep. Annie Kuster and Sen. Jeanne Shaheen joined nearly 60 other Democrats, led by lawmakers from New York and New Mexico, who sent a letter on the issue to Congressional leadership this week.

The letter cites research showing the clean energy sector could lose nearly a quarter of its jobs to the pandemic in the near term.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

The state’s top tax official says the coronavirus pandemic could cut state coffers by more than $450 million through the middle of next year.

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State revenue commissioner Lindsey Stepp told lawmakers her department’s latest revenue estimates don’t presume a second wave of the coronavirus. She also stressed the challenges of modeling tax collections under the circumstances.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Democrats hold majorities in both the New Hampshire House and Senate, but Republicans could make it impossible for state lawmakers to pass any legislation this year, as State House leaders attempt to finish business amid COVID-19 closures.

UNH Carsey School

A recent poll says New Hampshire residents' trust in science and government advice hasn't changed much, even as the coronavirus spreads.

Researchers at the University of New Hampshire's Survey Center polled about 1,800 residents in March and April.

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Dan Tuohy / NHPR

New Hampshire’s Executive Council voted unanimously Wednesday to release $1.4 billion from the state’s treasury, amid a standoff over transparency around how coronavirus relief aid is being spent. As NHPR’s Josh Rogers reports, the move averts the possibility of a government shutdown.

The council blocked the release of more than $940 million two weeks ago to try to get Governor Chris Sununu to share more detail on his plans to spend federal relief aid.

Casey McDermott / NHPR

Gov. Chris Sununu has authorized spending millions on New Hampshire’s COVID-19 relief efforts in recent weeks, using powers he established through a state of emergency declaration two months ago. He’s done so without the oversight typically provided by lawmakers and the Executive Council.

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