Natasha Haverty

Politics and Policy Reporter, State of Democracy

Natasha Haverty is a reporter for NHPR's State of Democracy. Her investigative reporting has been awarded twice by the Society of Professional Journalists, as well as PRNDI, Murrow, and the AP. Her work has appeared in various media outlets, including NPR’s Morning Edition, All Things Considered, and The New York Times. Before coming to NHPR she worked at North Country Public Radio where she co-produced The Prison Time Media Project, a national series exploring the legacy of mass incarceration. 

Tasha got her start at The Moth, where she helped launch the Peabody Award-winning Moth Radio Hour.

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Jimmy Gutierrez

The New Hampshire race that did get called late last night was District 2 Congressional Seat—which covers the west and north of the state. Incumbent Democrat Annie Kuster won a third term, but that win was unexpectedly tight. NHPR’s Natasha Haverty reports.


Natasha Haverty/NHPR

This Tuesday, millions of people across the country will head to the polls to cast their votes and help decide who should hold our nation’s highest offices. But there will also be millions of people who won't go to the polls. In fact, four out of 10 adults in the U.S. do not vote. 

And they have their reasons, too. We went to one Manchester neighborhood where voter turnout is particularly low to learn more.

Meredith Nierman | WGBH News

Hillary Clinton was in New Hampshire on Sunday night making her closing argument to voters here. 

The musician James Taylor warmed up the crowd Sunday night at the Manchester Radisson Hotel—one ballroom and two overflow rooms of Clinton supporters taking one last moment to bask in their candidate before Tuesday.

There are a few towns and cities across New Hampshire that -- time and again -- almost perfectly mirror how the state votes as a whole. Political junkies call a town like this a "bellwether." 

One of the state's most tried and true bellwether communities is the city of Rochester. 

Pam Colantuono and Minata Toure have never met. But they have a few things in common.

They both live in Manchester. They’re both moms. And the biggest thing they share — the thing that shapes both their lives and how they see the world — is the classic American immigration story.


New Hampshire is still considered a swing state, despite a trend toward Democrats in the last few presidential elections. But when you look further down the ballot, there are relatively few districts that can still be called battlegrounds—most are reliably red or blue. One of the last ones left is a long slice of the Seacoast—State Senate District 24. NHPR’s Natasha Haverty reports on how two candidates are working to tip the scales there.


Paige Sutherland/NHPR

After Tuesday’s primary election, both parties’ tickets for November are now officially in place. On Wednesday, the state’s GOP leaders gathered for a “unity breakfast” and got one major call to action: stand with the man who will be at the top of their lineup: Donald Trump. Their first chance was last night, at a rally Trump held in Laconia.


Allegra Boverman for NHPR

At a campaign rally inside Laconia Middle School Thursday night, Republican Presidential Nominee Donald Trump opened his remarks by mocking the fact that his press pool’s plane was still on the tarmac:

"I have really good news for you. I just heard that the press is stuck on their airplane they can’t get here [Applause] I love it. So they’re trying to get here now they’re going to be about 30 minutes late they called and said, 'Could you wait?' I said absolutely not," Trump told a cheering crowd.

Jim Cole/AP

New Hampshire voters had the biggest field of candidates for governor to consider  that they've had in twenty years--seven people wanted the job. But how much can a New Hampshire governor actually do, anyway? 


Natasha Haverty

On Saturday, the city of Rochester, N.H. held its first gay pride celebration. Natasha Haverty sends this audio postcard. Click "listen" to hear  voices from the day.

Natasha Haverty

July 20, 3:36 pm. Republican State Senator Nancy Stiles sits in her favorite Portsmouth coffee shop, wearing a summer dress and a necklace of big yellow beads. After serving three terms in Concord representing District 24, she’s decided to step down: time to give someone else a turn. Within weeks of Stiles’ retirement, a quartet of eager Republicans stepped in the race to replace her.

Stiles looks up over a half-eaten piece of cake and makes a wish. “I’m hoping the campaign doesn’t get overly nasty,” she sighs.

Natasha Haverty

Vermont senator and former presidential contender Bernie Sanders spent Labor Day in New Hampshire.

Sam Evans-Brown / NHPR

Vermont senator and former presidential candidate Bernie Sanders will be spending Labor Day in New Hampshire. 

Sanders will start his day in Manchester, at the AFL-CIO Labor Day Breakfast. That’s at the Saint George Greek Orthodox Cathedral.

Sanders then heads to Lebanon, where he’ll be campaigning for his former rival, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. That’s at Lebanon High School; doors open at 2.

This is Sanders’ first time campaigning for Clinton, since he endorsed her at an event in Portsmouth back in July.

biologycorner

It’s back to school week for lots of kids across the state—some districts got started as early as last Wednesday, others are waiting until after Labor Day. And as students, teachers, and parents gear up for another year, we’re just finding out how students did on the first statewide SAT. 

Natasha Haverty

This week on Foodstuffs, our weekly look at food and food culture around the region, NHPR's Natasha Haverty visits Payao's Thai Cookin', a food stand at the edge of the woods in Northwood, N.H.

Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson and vice-presidential candidate Bill Weld are campaigning in New Hampshire today. They'll be holding a rally in Concord's Eagle Square at 5:30. Earlier this afternoon they paid a quick visit to a frequent campaign stop-- the Red Arrow Diner in Manchester. 


Natasha Haverty

Let’s just get this out of the way: it’s okay if you’ve been so distracted by the presidential race that you forgot about the state primary coming up in September. But now that we’re good, let’s look at one big question hanging over those smaller, state races:  what impact will the top of the ballot—the campaign everybody is thinking about—have on local elections? 

Jack Rodolico, NHPR

This week, NHPR has been looking at what homelessness means in New Hampshire. As part of our series No Place to Go: Homeless in New Hampshire,  we visited the PK Motel in Effingham, and heard about how having a roof over your head isn’t the same as having a home.

So where is that line so many families are straddling, between financial insecurity and having no place to live?

Dean Christon is Executive Director of New Hampshire’s Housing Finance Authority and he joined NHPR’s Peter Biello to talk through some of these issues.

Jack Rodolico

It’s nearly impossible to say how many homeless people there are in New Hampshire. And the biggest reason is that most people without a home in this state aren’t on the street or in shelters—they actually have a roof over their heads.

Some sleep on couches, and some rent rooms by the week at a place like the P.K. Motel in Effingham.

This story is the last installment in a special series on homelessness. Click here to see and listen to all the stories

Natasha Haverty

Drive the highway between Manchester and Concord, and maybe you’ll catch a glimpse of the tarps and tents lining sections of the Merrimack River and the train tracks. When winter shelters close, homeless people find refuge outdoors, in public—but that’s an act that’s often against the law.

 

And with no unified policy to work with, New Hampshire’s city officials and homeless residents tend it to make it up as they go.


This past winter a car struck and killed a homeless man in Concord. His name was Gene Parker - he lived on the streets for five years and in that time his friends and advocates fought hard to get him into an apartment. But he died before that could happen.

 

Parker’s story is brutal, but it also says a lot about why it’s so hard to pull someone like him out of homelessness.

Natasha Haverty

Senator Kelly Ayotte is in the middle of a competitive reelection bid this year.  In her six years in Washington she's quickly risen from the ranks of rookie politician to the national spotlight. But enough with that for the moment. We sent NHPR's State of Democracy reporter Natasha Haverty off the campaign trail, to see what Ayotte's daily working life is like on Capitol Hill. She sends this report.


Ollie Atkins / Richard Nixon Presidential Library

When politicians talk about drug abuse, ‘tough on crime’ is a phrase that seems to be going out of style as lawmakers on both sides of the aisle agree that the "War on Drugs" didn’t solve the problem.

http://laconiasafeschools.weebly.com/

This week NHPR has been reporting on how New Hampshire schools are fundamentally rethinking the role they play in the lives of their students and in their communities. Reeling from the state’s heroin crisis, the aftermath of the recession, and struggling local economies, many schools are taking on a mountain of new responsibilities beyond the classroom, often with limited help from the state.

Casey McDermott

 The Secretary of State, the Attorney General and certainly the clerk who’ll be running your polling place in September, want you to be sure you’ve registered with the party you want—or as undeclared—by Tuesday. So if you’re registered as a Republican but want to change to undeclared—or you’re registered as a Democrat but want to vote as a Republican this time around—this is your last chance.

And on Wednesday, filing period opens up for candidates running for state office—those folks need to be registered as voters of their party of choice by Tuesday too.

Natasha Haverty

Brothers Donuts in Franklin has some pretty odd hours of operation: 3 am to noon, Mondays through Friday, with a 2 am opening on Saturdays.

But it’s worked. The donut shop has been open for the past 35 years. And for 33 of those, it's just been one brother in the kitchen. 

Sara Plourde / NHPR

The classic gerrymandered map you learned about in high school civics class is full of oddly-shaped legislative districts, drawn with obvious intent to boost one party.

But in New Hampshire, that’s rarely the case: It’s very hard to see, just by looking at the election maps, which districts might help or hurt a certain party’s chances.

So has gerrymandering been a factor in the state’s politics? And if so, how much?

Digitization supported by the Cogswell Benevolent Trust. / Image obtained via the New Hampshire Historical Society

Here’s a confusing reality about New Hampshire politics today.

Democrats are having success like never before, scoring wins that would have been impossible just two decades ago.

But despite that shift, there’s one place where Republicans still have a leg up on Election Day: the state Legislature.

New Hampshire's political boundaries get drawn every ten years, after new Census data comes out.

The idea of the bill taken up by the N.H. Senate today was to take the pen out of the hands of lawmakers and let an independent commission to draft the map of state house legislative districts—one that reflects voters’ wishes and “eliminates partisan distortions.”

But the Senate effectively killed that proposal Thursday—moving it to interim study as legislators are gearing up for election season.

A&E Coffee

That cup of coffee you had this morning came a long way before you poured it.

Certified coffee taster Emeran Langmaid has spent the past 15 years getting to know coffee growers in Latin America, and mastering the art of roasting coffee here in New Hampshire. She owns A&E Coffee in Amherst, and Manchester New Hampshire. 

Langmaid flies to Honduras to judge a coffee competition in a couple of weeks, but NHPR's Natasha Haverty caught up with her right here in New Hampshire as she sampled her latest batch.

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