Josh Rogers

Senior Political Reporter and Editor

Josh has worked at NHPR since 2000 and serves as NHPR’s State House reporter. Before joining the staff, he lived in New York, where he worked for a number of different magazines.

Josh’s award winning reporting can be heard locally but also regularly airs on national broadcasts of NPR’s Morning Edition and All Things Considered. Josh is also a frequent analyst on political talk shows in the state. He grew up in Concord, and holds a Bachelor of Arts in American Studies from Reed College.

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Thomas Fearon

After a private tour of Concord Hospital’s emergency department, which on one day in February had 22 patients awaiting psychiatric services in a space designed for 6, Governor Sununu told reporters New Hampshire needs as many as 50 new beds for mental health patients, but he wants to create a mental health system where demand is less.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Governor Chris Sununu says he’s more than made good on a key campaign promise: That he’d personally meet with 100 out-of-state businesses in 100 days.

“We spoke to businesses all over the world, I believe the number is 127, businesses in the first 100 days, so we met our goal quite exceedingly, and we still have quite a backlog.”

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Tuesday saw Gov. Chris Sununu’s maiden visit to testify before a legislative committee, on a bill to expand full-day kindergarten to more school districts. And from the start, Sununu made it clear he sees the policy as one that could define his time as governor.

josh rogers/nhpr

Governor Chris Sununu has decided to rescind the nomination of Peter Kujawski to be New Hampshire's next Environmental Services Commissioner. Sununu says members of the Executive Council had concerns about Bedford businessman Peter Kujawski, who claimed during his confirmation hearing that Sununu had offered him several jobs, including one at a private company.

Courtroom One Gavel
Joe Gratz / Flickr Creative Commons

A ruling in a high-profile case involving the state's child protection agency, the Division for Children, Youth and Families, may clear the way for confidentiality to be waived in future legal proceedings involving DCYF.

Josh Rogers for NHPR

Northern Pass interveners and opponents, Eversource staff, and lawyers - many lawyers - gathered in a big, rented room with custard-colored walls. And that’s where they will be every day until these hearings end, weeks from now.

josh rogers/nhpr

Peter Kujawski, Governor Sununu's pick to be the state’s top environmental regulator, faced questions about his background during his confirmation hearing Wednesday.  

josh rogers/nhpr

Governor Sununu's pick to lead the state labor department went before the Executive Council for a confirmation hearing Wednesday.

The Alpha Delta fraternity partially inspired the 1978 movie Animal House, counts Dartmouth President Phil Hanlon as a former member, and has been notorious in Hanover for years.

Dartmouth de-recognized Alpha Delta two years ago when 11 members had the Alpha Delta letters branded into their buttocks as part of an initiation ritual.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Rare is the New Hampshire governor who will admit feeling ashamed of the state. But Chris Sununu’s been doing just that lately, over New Hampshire’s lack of state-supported full-day kindergarten.

“It’s embarrassing. It’s embarrassing. This is the 21st century; this is New Hampshire.”

Former U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte has joined the board of the Rupert Murdoch-owned News Corp, which owns the New York Post, the Wall St. Journal and HarperCollins. 

Kelly Ayotte has kept busy since she left the Senate in January. She's helped the Trump administration introduce Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch to her former colleagues and she's been a fellow at the institute of politics at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government.

NHPR Staff

Each week, NHPR Senior Political Reporter Josh Rogers joins Morning Edition's Rick Ganley for On the Political Front, a rundown of the week to come in New Hampshire Politics.


Allegra Boverman for NHPR

A Republican bill adding new requirements for proving voter eligibility has cleared the state Senate along party lines. The measure would require create more stringent verification requirements for people registering to vote close to an election.

Hannah McCarthy/NHPR

 

When Governor Sununu unveiled his $12 billion state budget last month he stressed some priorities: full-day kindergarten, money to hire more state troopers, and a fund to help cities and towns pay for road and school projects.

josh rogers\nhpr

State Education Commissioner Frank Edelblut says he anonymously donated $1,000 to help fund a school board’s legal defense against the department he now leads.

Tracy Lee Carroll, NHPR

Updated at 4:30 PM:

After consulting with the Secretary of State, the Attorney General's office and holding a conference call with local election officials Governor Sununu says differences remain over who has the power to decide when an election can be postponed.

josh rogers/nhpr

Senators Jeanne Shaheen and Maggie Hassan were joined by heath care providers, hospital officials and a recovery advocate as the railed against what they called Trumpcare during a visit to Concord Hopital. Shaheen said based on her review of the GOP bill, the prognosis for New Hampshire is grim.

"It will be a real disaster for people in New Hampshire. It will result in higher healthcare costs and less coverage."

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

The New Hampshire House has voted 187 to 179, along near party lines, to table a bill that would extend anti-discrimination protections to people who are transgender in employment, housing and public accommodations.

Jack Rodolico for NHPR

New Hampshire Attorney General Joe Foster will step down at month's end after four years leading the state's justice department.

In his resignation letter to the Executive Council Foster called his time as A.G. "an extraordinary honor."

Governor Chris Sununu says he expects to name his pick to replace Foster shortly.

"The sooner the better. I mean I can't give you an exact time table, but we are working very diligently through the process now. We are not going to wait."

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Governor Chris Sununu says he's watching the progress of a proposal to extend more anti-discrimination protections to people who are transgender to see if it makes it out of the legislature. 

20 states ban discrimination against people who are transgender, including MA, VT and Maine. The bill before the house aims to ensure gender identity bias isn't permitted when it comes to  employment, housing or public accommodation.

A house committee voted 15-2 last month in support of the bill, but House Speaker Shawn Jasper opposes it.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

The top Republican in the New Hampshire House says he fears long-term harm if New Hampshire joins twenty other states – including Massachusetts, Vermont, and Maine – in extending non-discrimination protections in housing, employment and public accommodations to people who are transgender.


josh rogers/nhpr

U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen visited former Iraqi refugee Tamam Mohamad, at the Spice Center market in Manchester to call attention to her opposition to President Trump's new executive order banning U.S. from 6 Muslim-majority countries and freezing all refugee resettlement.

Mohmmad came from Iraq in the late-1990s with $20. He eventually became a citizen and returned to his home country for 3 years as U.S. military interpreter. He says Iraq may not be included in the President’s new executive order, but that doesn’t matter to him.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

A governor’s ability to work with the legislature can make, or in some cases, break his or her political legacy. Chris Sununu has now been in office for two months, and once thing that’s become clear – to him and to lawmakers – is that he’s no natural when it comes to dealing with the legislature. 

Governor Chris Sununu performed what is a ritual for New Hampshire governors: a tree tapping ceremony marking the official kick off of maple sugar season.  But the governor also blended some political talk with the syrup. 

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

  With the future of Obamacare unclear, and GOP talk of converting Medicaid, which serves 186,000 people in New Hampshire, to a block grant system, Senator Hassan is reminding colleagues past and present that she sees changes to the program, particularly the end of expanded Medicaid, a grave threat.

NHPR Staff

President Trump and Congressional Republicans are considering transforming  Medicaid - which provides health services to millions of low income people - to a block grant program. New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu is pitching the potential change as a way to better serve local needs, but it’s also one that carries risk.

Josh Rogers for NHPR

Governor Chris Sununu signed his first bill into law Wednesday, repealing the license requirement to carry a concealed gun.

The new law, which takes effect immediately, is the first tangible outcome of Republican control in Concord.

josh rogers\nhpr

Governor Chris Sununu's pick to be New Hampshire's education commissioner, was approved by the executive council today.

The 3-2 vote confirming Frank Edelblut came a day after the State Board of Education wrote to Sununu expressing reservations about Edelblut's qualifications.

josh rogers\nhpr

The Executive Council was set to confirm Frank Edelblut at its last meeting, when councilor Andru Volinsky, a democrat who opposes Edelblut, questioned if the Governor had met his legal obligation to "consult" the state board of education about the nomination.

Sununu had spoken with the board's chairman, but decided to postpone the vote until he could meet with the whole board.

He didn't talk about it much as a candidate but as Governor Chris Sununu has made passage of a right-to-work law a top priority.

Sununu invoked it in his inauguraul address and in a speech at the state GOP's annual meeting. Right to work cleared the senate but may be losing steam in the house, where the labor committee voted to reject it by a 2-1 margin. The full house votes on it next week. Sununu says he expects a tight vote but won't take the lead in workign to convince those still on the fence.  

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