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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Chris Jensen / NHPR

As rivals vying for their party's gubernatorial nomination, Jeanie Forrester clashed with Chris Sununu. Forrester said Sununu lacked wisdom, was immature and mocked him as a product of a political dynasty. But no sooner had Forrester announced for GOP chair, and promised to "make NH red again, " than Chris Sununu was there to offer his backing. In a statement he praised her as someone who could build on what Sununu called the GOP's "strong voter contact program and aggressive fundraising operation."

2016 was a mixed bag for New Hampshire Republicans. The party’s top elected official, Senator Kelly Ayotte, lost her seat to Governor Hassan. But Chris Sununu’s win over fellow executive councilor Colin Van Ostern gave the GOP the Governor’s office for the first time in a dozen years.  

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Raymond Buckley, the longtime leader of New Hampshire’s Democratic party, is now running to be his party’s national chairman. Buckley may lack the name recognition of some of his potential rivals, who include a member of congress, a former presidential candidate and a current cabinet secretary. 

josh rogers/nhpr

What Plymouth State University is calling the The Raymond S. Burton ’62 Open Laboratory  is a computer-enhanced meeting and study space.

Courtroom One Gavel
Joe Gratz / Flickr Creative Commons

Three women ticketed for going topless at a Weirs Beach earlier this year will get a trial after a judge rejected their motion to dismiss the case on Constitutional grounds.

The women argued that their conduct -- topless sunbathing and yoga -- amounted to political speech with artistic value.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Former Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown, one of President-elect Donald Trump's most prominent local backers, is in the running to join Trump's cabinet as secretary for veterans affairs.

As Scott Brown left Trump Tower he told reporters his meeting with the President-elect was "great," and that he expects to hear if Trump has selected him to lead the VA after Thanksgiving.

josh rogers/nhpr

No sooner had Chris Sununu slipped into the council chambers though the back door than the well-wishing began.

First, there was Maj. Gen.William Reddel, the adjutant general of the New Hampshire National Guard: "Sir, congratulations."

And then Public Utilities Commission Chairman Marty Honigberg: "Congratulations."

"OK, thanks, good to see you," Sununu replied. "Everything going good over there?

"Oh, every day is better than the day before," Honigberg said.

"That’s the attitude man, that’s the attitude," Sununu said. "I love it."

josh rogers/nhpr

Charlie Arlinghaus works in the basement of a down-on-its-heels apartment building a few blocks south of the State House. The building, and the no frills feel of the office, would work in an odd, very New Hampshire-politics film noir, one where the detective decorated his office with posters of free-market economists Milton Friedman and F.A. Hayek and pitched himself as connected to the budget process.

josh rogers/nhpr

On the night before any election tend to go for broke to drive voters to the polls. Donald Trump west to far as to pitch his possible presidency as a kind of national salvation.

Casey McDermott, NHPR

Kelly Ayotte and Maggie Hassan crisscrossed the state over the weekend, glad-handing voters and rallying the support they hope will get them over the line in an election that may decide the balance of the U.S. Senate.

WMUR

By now it seems inevitable: A debate question gets asked about something other than the presidential race, but soon enough, the discussion is about Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.  Wednesday night, it took seven minutes for them to enter the debate.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

 

Listen to Kelly Ayotte on the campaign trail these days, and at times her message can sound like a hymn — to bipartisanship.

Kelly Ayotte and Maggie Hassan debated Friday morning on WGIR. The two senate candidates clashed over who was more independent on the issues – and, of their respective parties' unpopular presidential nominees.

josh rogers/nhpr

Republican Senator Kelly Ayotte says 11-year old footage of Donald Trump talking crudely about groping women is “fundamentally different” than past statements by Trump, and that she'd  support Trump dropping out of the race. 

Ayotte's latest stance comes two days after the Washington Post reported on a videotape where Trump talks of groping women.

On Friday, Ayotte called Trump’s remarks "totally inappropriate and offensive."

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Senator Kelly Ayotte has withdrawn her support for Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump. The move comes after the Washington Post reported on an 11-year old video showed Trump talking crudely about groping women.

Friday night, Ayotte called Trump's remarks in the video "totally inappropriate and offensive."

By late Saturday morning, Ayotte said in a statement that she’s “a mom and an American first and cannot support a candidate for President who brags about degrading and assaulting women.”

josh rogers/nhpr

 

Town hall political events are dear to New Hampshire but not to Donald Trump, who built his campaign on huge rallies. And there were early signs Thursday night that Trump’s event in Sandown never aspired to be a true town hall.  

Both Chris Sununu and Colin Van Ostern say their business experience makes them qualified to lead New Hampshire. But it was clear from the start of last night's NECN/Concord Monitor debate at New England College, that neither is much impressed by the other’s resume. 

In the Balance is NHPR's blog looking at the race for U.S. Senate between Republican incumbent Kelly Ayotte and Democrat Gov. Maggie Hassan.

In the wake of their first televised debate, Kelly Ayotte and Maggie Hassan are both out with ads. Both underscore how last night went.

 

Kelly Ayotte and Maggie Hassan shared a stage last night at New England College. Broadcast on NECN, it was the first televised debate in their race for US Senate. And it showed that despite this race’s high-profile – it’s one of a handful that could decide control of the Senate --  it remains in the shadow of the battle for the White House.

 

Jason Moon, NHPR

  Prosecutors say interviews and electronic evidence indicates that  Kyle Tasker used and sold marijuana at the state house, but also that illicit drug transactions at the capital it weren't  "pervasive" and no charges will be filed. 

The lawmakers named in the AG's report are Manchester Rep. Joe Lachance, who told prosecutors Tasker was "like the Club Med of weed."

Pam Tucker of Greenland, also bought pot from Tasker and a marijuana elixir.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

 

Donald Trump returned to New Hampshire Thursday for a rally in Bedford, where he took aim at Hillary and former President Bill Clinton.

NHPR Staff

A New Hampshire law banning photographs of marked ballots has been struck down by the first circuit court of appeals.

The ruling marks the second time a federal court has found so-called ballot selfies permissible under the first amendment.

New Hampshire's law, which took effect in 2014 made displaying a picture of a marked ballot a crime punishable by a $1000 fine. 

The theory behind the law, championed by NH secretary of state Bill Gardner, is that permitting people to prove how they voted, opened the door to potential voter coercion.

"On the Political Front" is our weekly check-in with NHPR's Senior Political Reporter Josh Rogers.

josh rogers/nhpr

Congressman Frank Guinta looked relieved when Republicans gathered at the Bedford Village Inn for their post-primary unity breakfast Wednesday.

And for good reason. 

Executive Councilor Chris Sununu and State Representative Frank Edelblut headed home last night before their tight race for the Republican nomination for governor could be called.

 

With 280 of 300 precincts reporting, Sununu led Edelblut by a 1 percentage point -- about a thousand votes.   

By the time Sununu addressed supporters last night at the Portsmouth Country Club, it was heading towards 11:30,  and the race wasn’t officially over.  But with 90 percent of the vote in and Sununu in the lead, it felt -- and sounded -- like it was heading in that direction.

Josh Rogers, NHPR

Politicians have ways of gauging where they stand. Some count yard signs, some dwell on polls or voting data. Manchester mayor Ted Gatsas, who’s never lost an election, has another touchstone.

 

 

Frank Guinta knew his well-documented violations of federal campaign finance law would come up last night. And he came prepared, so much so that he raised the issue himself, just seconds into the debate.

 

"Unfortunately during the next 60 minutes, my opponent, who is a carrier lobbyist will try to impugn my integrity and personally attack me and my family and tell you that I haven’t done anything for the people of New Hampshire."

The major candidates for governor met in a debate Tuesday night on WMUR, giving the hopefuls the chance to press their cases to a statewide TV audience.

The Republicans sought traction on issues of core importance to GOP voters.


Josue Mendivil via Flickr CC

State tourism officials expect this Labor Day weekend to be a busy one. Kris Nielsen with the division of travel and tourism says visitors are projected to spend $88 million here between now and Monday night.

"It's predicted to be the busiest labor day weekend on record. In fact we are expecting about 620,000 people to visit from out of state during the three day holiday that actually represents a 5 percent increase over last year."

Democratic Vice presidential candidate Tim Kaine rallied local democrats in Dover, Laconia and Nashua Thursday, and talked education in Manchester. Kaine said policymakers at all levels need to work to make education more responsive to the needs of employers. He also took aim at GOP nominee Donald Trump.

“The main thing we know about education from the other side is this Trump University thing, where education was viewed as a little bit of a con job. You know, give us a lot of money and we’ll give you something that probably not worth the paper that it’s printed on.”

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