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.

Follow Josh's tweets from the Statehouse and campaign trail @JoshRogersNHPR

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Politics
3:45 am
Fri February 27, 2015

'Ballot Selfies' Clash With The Sanctity Of Secret Polling

A man takes a "selfie" while waiting in line to cast his vote in the Wisconsin gubernatorial race in November.
Darren Hauck Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 27, 2015 2:56 pm

From Pope Francis and President Obama to the kid down the block, we have, for better or worse, become a world full of selfie-takers.

But as ubiquitous as they are, there are some places where selfies remain controversial — like the voting booth. The legal battle rages over so-called ballot selfies in the state that holds the first presidential primary.

This may be a fight of the digital age, but according to New Hampshire Secretary of State Bill Gardner, it involves a very old American ideal — the sanctity of the secret ballot.

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Politics
4:11 pm
Wed February 25, 2015

Biden Touts Administration's Record During N.H. Visit

Vice President Biden at Manchester Community College Wednesday
Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Vice President Joe Biden paid a visit to Wednesday. He collected an award at UNH law school, visited a community college and promoted the Obama administration’s economic record.

Speaking at the Warren Rudman center at UNH law, Biden told a crowd that included Rudman’s children that the former NH senator embodied public service and the ethos of his state.

"He served forthright, frugal and fair, everything about him, everything about him."

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Politics
11:21 pm
Mon February 23, 2015

Rubio Tests N.H. Waters, Gets Challenged On Immigration

Rubio in Hollis Monday
Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Marco Rubio’s stop at the Lawrence barn in Hollis was a freewheeling affair. The Senator accepted a jug of maple syrup, preached a message of opportunity, and  took questions that ranged from how to get money out of politics to whether the President ought to be impeached, to immigration.

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NH News
4:43 pm
Tue February 17, 2015

Hassan Banks on Keno But Still Wants A Casino

Credit Dave via Flickr CC

 

Gov. Maggie Hassan says she still wants to bring a casino to NH but is a "realist."

The Governor told lawmakers her decision to fund her $11.5 billion budget with $27m from yet-to-be-legal Keno doesn’t mean she’s changed her mind about supporting a full-blown Casino.

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Politics
3:30 pm
Wed February 11, 2015

Hassan Faces Challenges, Questions On Budget Priorities

Governor Hassan speaks to legislators at her inauguration in January
Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Governor Maggie Hassan will today present her spending plan for the next two years on Thursday. Budget writers face several key challenges this year.

Will the Governor again include a casino in her budget? Will she propose spending on commuter rail, a goal she called crucial when she was sworn in? We’ll have to wait for the speech to see. Hassan didn’t tip her hand in brief comments to reporters.

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Politics
8:36 am
Mon February 2, 2015

On The Political Front: Romney Drops Out; Education Funding In The Statehouse

Mitt Romney in N.H. in 2011
Credit Josh Rogers for NHPR

On The Political Front is our weekly conversation with NHPR's Senior Political Reporter Josh Rogers. This week, what Mitt Romney's exit means for 2016, and a look at the issues up for debate this week at the N.H. Statehouse.

Let’s start with Presidential politics – Mitt Romney won't make said a third run for president. What was more surprising, that he said no, or that he was thinking of running again in the first place?

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Politics
3:22 pm
Fri January 30, 2015

Despite Brief Flirtation, Romney's Out For 2016

Mitt Romney at an event in Stratham N.H., 2011
Credit Josh Rogers for NHPR

Mitt Romney’s decision to skip a third run for president leaves the New Hampshire's GOP presidential primary without a clear early front-runner.  

Mitt Romney had been publicly flirting with a 2016 run for the past three weeks. On Wednesday he made a campaign-style trip to Mississippi, but little more than a day later he used conference calls to tell his staunchest backers that he’s decided it is best to clear the way for others leaders in his party.

Jim Merrill ran both of Romney’s N.H. campaigns. He said he didn’t see this coming.

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Politics
5:19 pm
Wed January 28, 2015

House Considering Bill To Create Residency Guidelines For Voters

Credit Tracy Lee Carroll, NHPR

House lawmakers are considering a measure that aims to create guidelines for election officials to judge a voters domicile. And the secretary of state’s office supports the bill.

The fight over what should constitute domicile for voting purposes has been going on for years in New Hampshire, and it’s often focused status of college students.

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Politics
3:29 pm
Fri January 23, 2015

State Senate President Chuck Morse Critical Of Nursing Home Cut

State Senate President Chuck Morse
Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Health and Human Services commissioner Nick Toumpas told lawmakers he will make up most of the $58 million hole in his budget through $45 million in cuts and savings, including trims for community health centers and family planning programs.

But the issue rankling lawmakers the most is $7 million of payment cuts to nursing homes.

Toumpas told the legislature’s fiscal committee those cuts were a tough call.

“I just had not a whole lot of options, in terms of what we needed to do.”

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Politics
4:25 pm
Wed January 21, 2015

DHHS Commissioner Delivers Warning On $82 Million Shortfall

The N.H. Statehouse in Concord
Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

New Hampshire's top health official warned lawmakers his department’s current budget has what amounts to an $82 million shortfall. The legislature’s fiscal committee meets Friday to consider a proposal by the Governor to balance the state budget by July.

As he briefed the house finance committee, Health and Human Services commissioner Nick Toumpas stressed what many lawmakers already know – that his department faces a tough balance sheet.

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NH News
4:55 pm
Wed January 14, 2015

Rand Paul Makes The Rounds In N.H.

Rand Paul speaks to business leaders in Concord at The Draft, a bar owned by State Senator Andy Sanborn (left).
Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Kentucky Senator Rand Paul began his day by breakfasting with state lawmakers. He then paid a quick visit to Manchester Mayor Ted Gatsas.

By noon he was with gun right activists at a Litchfield shooting club.

He then hit a Manchester charter school, where a called for a rollback of common core, the repeal of no child left behind, and the elimination of the department of education.

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Politics
1:25 pm
Wed January 14, 2015

N.H. Budget Facing $30 Million Dollar Shortfall

Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

The state budget is facing a $30 million dollar shortfall, according to the Legislative Budget Office. Legislative budget assistant Jeff Pattison briefed lawmakers today. He stressed that the number could grow or shrink between now and the end of the fiscal year.

“We are looking at about a 30 million dollar problem, but that’s as of January 14th. There are a lot of things that are going to be happening between now and June 30th. My expectation is these numbers will still be changing when we get to the committee of conference in June.”

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NH News
8:53 am
Mon January 12, 2015

On The Political Front: Republicans Reelect Chair, Budget Battle Looms

The New Hampshire Statehouse in Concord
Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

NHPR’s Josh Rogers joins Rick Ganley Monday mornings to discuss developments on New Hampshire’s political front.

Governor Hassan has begun her second term. Republicans voted Saturday to give Jennifer Horn another turn as party chair. And back to work for lawmakers in Concord. Let’s start with the GOP state committee meeting over the weekend, the re-election of Jennifer Horn. Significant?

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Politics
4:56 pm
Wed January 7, 2015

Push For O'Brien As Majority Leader Rejected; O'Brien To Form Alternative GOP Leadership Team

Rep. Bill O'Brien (left) and N.H. House Speaker Shawn Jasper
Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

The New Hampshire House rejected an effort by backers of former Republican Speaker Bill O'Brien to install him as House majority leader. But O’Brien says he’s still moving forward with plans to form his own leadership team.

Backers of O’Brien knew they faced long odds in trying to get a House majority to reject the course it set just last month when members chose Shawn Jasper as speaker,  but that didn’t stop them.

Steve Stepanek of Amherst told colleagues the very future of the house depended on ensuring that caucuses -not any speaker - get final say on who should lead.

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Politics
11:08 am
Wed January 7, 2015

N.H. Legislators Can Once Again Carry Concealed Weapons On House Floor

Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Legislators can again carry concealed weapons on the floor of the N.H. House and in the legislative office building after the Republicans-led house voted to undo a prohibition on the practice put in place two years ago by Democrats.

The 228-149 vote came following a debate where Democrats like Len DiSesa, former deputy police chief in Portsmouth, argued allowing guns in the chamber risks public safety.

“The only people who should be armed in the House of Representatives are trained police officers.”

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Politics
4:31 pm
Tue January 6, 2015

Hassan's Inaugural Donors List Will Be Made Available, Bradley Calls For Mandatory Disclosure

Screenshot of the Inaugural Committee's website

Governor Maggie Hassan’s inaugural committee says it’s raised more than $200,000 dollars. State law permits such donations to remain private but a spokesman for the committee says the names and contribution amounts will be made available.

State law has never required the disclosure of inauguration donors, but one governor – John Lynch -- took the step of filing reports with the secretary of state’s office anyway.

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Politics
10:38 am
Mon January 5, 2015

On The Political Front: Hassan Faces New Political Landcape, N.H. House Remains Unsettled

Governor Hassan on election night, 2014. Members of the N.H. House on Organization Day, 2014.
Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Each Monday, NHPR's Senior Political Reporter Josh Rogers joins me on Morning Edition for On The Political Front, a conversation about the week ahead in politics.

Listen to the segment below, or scroll down to read the interview.

Governor Hassan will be inaugurated for her second term Thursday. The legislature holds its first session day Wednesday. Let’s start with the governor. She faces a different political landscape than when she first won office in 2010.

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Politics
4:39 pm
Thu December 18, 2014

Proposal to Allow Concealed Weapons In House Chamber Clears Committee

Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Concealed weapons would again be allowed in and around the N.H. house chamber under a policy endorsed Thursday by the House rules committee.

Goffstown republican John Burt sponsored the change, which would restore polices in effect at the N.H. House from 2011 to 2013.

"When you have a gun free zone it’s a false sense of security. It really is, you know some people might feel good and say we are safe in there. We are really not."

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NH News
4:36 pm
Thu December 18, 2014

Rules Committee Rejects Bid To Elect House Leaders

No one expected this proposal to win favor in a committee led by House Speaker Shawn Jasper and made up of lawmakers who back his leadership.

But those loyal to Bill O’Brien, like Amherst Representative Steve Stepanek, gave it a try.

"For the integrity of the house it is important to put things in rules now that we took for granted as being precedent."

Before the committee voted it down, House Speaker Jasper, countered that not having a Speaker appoint leaders is what lacks precedent.

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Politics
5:51 pm
Wed December 17, 2014

House Majority Leader Says He's Moving Forward, Setting Goals

Voting buttons on the N.H. State House floor
Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

The man appointed by House Speaker Shawn Jasper to lead House Republicans held his first GOP caucus on Wednesday.  Brookline lawmaker Jack Flanagan says he expects resistance from some backers of former House Speaker Bill O'Brien, but expects the controversy over who is the rightful leader of Republicans in the House to fade.

On Wednesday afternoon, Flanagan caucused privately with about 100 House Republicans.  Flanagan said the stated goal was to gather input of policy priorities for the next two year session.

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Politics
4:45 pm
Tue December 16, 2014

O'Brien Backers Say He Should Be House GOP Leader

Bill O'Brien Speaks to GOP Reps at Unofficial Caucus
Credit josh rogers/nhpr

Republicans loyal to former House Speaker Bill O’Brien say they won't recognize the Majority Leader named by House Speak Shawn Jasper.

About 100 House Republicans met behind closed doors to discuss how to make Bill O’Brien the official leader of the Republican caucus.

According to Bill O’Brien the goal is to ensure the House hews to a conservative agenda.

Under state GOP rules, O’Brien  is the Republican leader because he was the Republican Caucus's nominee for Speaker.

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NH News
7:30 am
Tue December 16, 2014

GOP Executive Committee Censures House Speaker Jasper

Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

House Speaker Shawn Jasper was censured Monday night by the executive committee of NH's republican party.

The censure resolution, which was adopted on a 17-9 vote, says Jasper placed his own interest above the interest of the Republican party when he opposed former house speaker Bill O'Brien in the race for the house's top job.

The censure carries no penalty but won adoption over a weaker sanction that sought to express the GOP's "unqualified disapproval."

Jasper's censure comes as he prepares for a house republican caucus meeting called for Wednesday.

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Politics
2:26 pm
Wed December 10, 2014

Former Supreme Court Justice Will Serve As House Legal Counsel

Chuck Douglas
Credit Via Wikimedia Commons

New Hampshire House Speaker Shawn Jasper has named former state Supreme Court Justice Chuck Douglas as House legal counsel.

Douglas's resume includes a term Congress, representing New Hampshire's 2nd district, and a stint as legal counsel for former governor Meldrim Thomson.

Douglas has also been counsel for the New Hampshire Republican state committee.

He now leads a Concord law firm, where he's  represented plaintiffs in lawsuits against the state on matters ranging from sexual harassment to judicial pensions.

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Politics
8:37 am
Mon December 8, 2014

On The Political Front: Jasper's Victory Still Stings For Some In GOP

NHPR’s Senior Political Reporter Josh Rogers joins Morning Edition each Monday to talk about developments in New Hampshire Politics.

The implications of Shawn Jasper’s win over Bill O’Brien in the House Speaker election last week continue to emerge, don’t they?

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Politics
3:42 pm
Wed December 3, 2014

Multiple Votes, Procedural Fights Result In N.H. House Speaker Upset

Former House speaker Bill O'Brien (left) and newly elected speaker Shawn Jasper
Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

It took multiple votes and more than 7 hours, but the NH House did choose a new speaker Wednesday – Hudson Republican Shawn Jasper.

Support from Democrats lifted Jasper to an upset win over former Speaker Bill O’Brien, who Republicans nominated to lead the House last month.  

The first sign that yesterday might not end well for Bill O’Brien, came early, when Republicans tried to alter the proposed rules for electing a Speaker.

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Politics
4:43 pm
Mon November 24, 2014

Hassan Orders $18 Million In Budget Cuts

The N.H. Statehouse dome in Concord
Credit NHPR Staff

As she presented the cuts to the legislature’s joint fiscal committee, Governor Hassan told lawmakers there are two things driving New Hampshire’s growing budget shortfall.

"This is a challenge created by both tax law changes and increased demand and federal law changes in our Medicaid caseload."

These issues are familiar to budget watchers. Medicaid caseload are up – the publicity surrounding Medicaid expansion is one reason. Another are federal changes that have increased eligibility.

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Politics
3:52 pm
Tue November 18, 2014

O'Brien Nominated Once Again For N.H. House Speaker

Rep. Bill O'Brien in NHPR's studios
Credit Brady Carlson

Republican Bill O'Brien has been nominated by fellow Republicans to become the next speaker of the New Hampshire House.

O'Brien, who served as speaker from 2011 to 2012, narrowly defeated Gene Chandler – also a former house speaker -- on Tuesday.

Prior to the vote, O'Brien told the GOP caucus by working together they could “turn NH into the crown jewel of New England.”

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Politics
8:25 am
Mon November 10, 2014

Perry Tests 2016 Waters: Addresses Charges, Keystone Pipeline, Border Security

Perry takes questions at Keene State College
Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Texas Governor Rick Perry’s itinerary  -- meetings with core Republican activists, stops at colleges, and a speech at an event celebrating the anniversary of the founding of the U.S. Marine Corps – was very much that of a candidate. 

In his remarks at the Marine event, Perry cited Russia, Iran, and ISIS, as reasons why the U.S. cannot afford a foreign policy, that is, as he put it, “lacking in clarity.” 

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Politics
8:13 am
Wed November 5, 2014

On the Political Front: Election Day 2014

Democrats Jeanne Shaheen and Maggie Hassan buck national Republican trends; state republicans pick up seats in the State House and a look at the strength of the Democratic party's local political machine.  NHPR's senior political reporter Josh Rogers discusses some of the key midterm results with Morning Edition host Rick Ganley  on this special edition of On the Political Front.

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Politics
8:10 am
Wed November 5, 2014

Shaheen Tops Brown For U.S. Senate

Jeanne Shaheen, Election night 2014
Allegra Boverman for NHPR

The polls had predicted this race would be tight, and for a time last night, even after media outlets had declared Jeanne Shaheen the winner, Scott Brown briefly held a slim lead. But by nights end, it was Shaheen and her backers savoring a win in a contest party leaders here and in Washington wanted dearly.

“Tonight, tonight, the people of NH chose to put NH first.” 

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