Primary Blog: Tight GOP Races for Governor, CD1 Make for a Late Night

Sep 13, 2016

New Hampshire voters headed to the polls Tuesday to choose nominees for governor, U.S. Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives. Check out our live blog below for updates from the polls and from campaign headquarters as results rolled in.

Click here for real-time results from Tuesday's statewide primary.

NHPR's reporters were stationed at campaign headquarters around the state on primary night. Tune in to Morning Edition and The Exchange on Wednesday for more on the races and to hear from the candidates.

Scroll through the gallery above to see photos from around New Hampshire on Primary Day.

Election Night Live Blog

Click here for real-time results from Tuesday's statewide primary.  

10:50 PM: Rich Ashooh thanks his supporters, apologizes for "lack of clarity" in results of race against Guinta for District 1 Congressional nomination. Race is still too close to call.

10:25 PM: Jack Flanagan calls Jim Lawrence to congratulate him on the Republican race for New Hampshire's 2nd Congresssional District. Lawrence has a considerable lead on Flanagan with 56% of precincts reporting.

10:00 PM: With the GOP race for governor too close to call, Frank Edelblut studies the TV at his campaign headquarters.

Credit Emily Corwin for NHPR

    

9:45 PM: Manchester Mayor Ted Gatsas concedes in the Republican gubernatorial primary. 

Colin Van Ostern gives his victory speech
Credit Casey McDermott for NHPR

9:36 PM: Democrat Colin Van Ostern gives his victory speech after running the Democratic primary in the race for New Hampshire Governor.

Credit Sheryl Rich-Kern for NHPR

9:23 PM: With 23% of precincts reporting, Jim Lawrence supporters feel good about their candidate's prospects in the Republican primary for New Hampshire's 2nd Congressional district. 

9:10: The race tightens in the Republican gubernatorial primary. It's now a close contest between Executive Councilor Chris Sununu and Frank Edelblut, with 27% reporting. You can see real time results right here.  

9:00 PM: The Rich Ashooh headquarters in Manchester is starting to fill up as results for the Congressional First District begin to pour in. So far – it’s looking like a close race against incumbent Republican Frank Guinta – whose headquarters is just down the street.

Eli Merheb of Derry is a registered Democrat but he told NHPR's Paige Sutherland that for this primary, he’s backing a Republican.

 

 

Ashooh supporter Eli Merherb
Credit Paige Sutherland for NHPR

8:53 PM: As the race tightens between GOP candidates for governor, supporters gather at Sununu headquarters at the Portsmouth Country Club. NHPR's Natasha Haverty is there.

Credit Natasha Haverty for NHPR

8:50 PM: Democratic candidate for Governor Mark Connolly prepares to concede after the race is called for Colin Van Ostern.

 

Credit Emily Corwin for NHPR

8:44 PM: The Associated Press calls the Democratic gubernatorial primary for Executive Councilor Colin Van Ostern.

8:38 PM: NHPR's Senior Political Reporter Josh Rogers is stationed at the campaign headquarters of Ted Gatsas, the Republican mayor of Manchester who's making a run in the Governor's race.

Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

  8:35 PM: Ted Siefer reports a "quite but upbeat" scene at the Brookline headquarters of state rep. Jack Flanagan, who is running for the GOP nomination in the 2nd Congressional District.

Credit Ted Siefer for NHPR

8:25 PM: NHPR's Emily Corwin is at the headquarters of Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mark Connolly, where about twenty supporters have gathered as results roll in.

Credit Emily Corwin for NHPR

8:22 PM:  Bill Molloy of Bedford says he worked with CD1 GOP candidate Rich Ashooh at BAE systems and says his candidate has a "great work ethic," and "will get the job done." With 13% of precincts reporting, the race between Ashooh and Republican incumbent Frank Guinta is tight.

Credit Paige Sutherland for NHPR

8:10 PM: The AP calls the U.S. Senate Primary for Republican incumbent Kelly Ayotte.  

8:03 PM: Reporter Paige Sutherland says it's "pretty desolate" at GOP congressional candidate Rich Ashooh's headquarters in Manchester.  

Credit Paige Sutherland for NHPR

8:00 PM: The polls are closed in New Hampshire

7:49 PM: Results are beginning to roll in. You can see them in real time right here.  

7:40 PM: NHPR's reporters are stationed at campaign headquarters around the state

 

Primary Day at the Polls

In Nashua, Low Voter Turnout and Indecision

by Sheryl Rich Kern

On one side of Amherst Elementary School building in Nashua, kids stampede around the playground. 

On the other side, the footsteps are a lot quieter, as a trickle of Ward 3 voters head inside to choose their nominees for state offices. 

A voter outside the polls in Nashua
Credit Sheryl Rich-Kern for NHPR

Robin Culpin isn’t sure who she’s backing.

"I have no idea yet. "

"Do you actually know who you’re going to vote for?"

"No, not until I get in. Right in front of the ballot. That’s my pick."

But others like Sonia Prince are more focused.

"Rail is a big deal to me. I would like more jobs coming to New Hampshire. Protecting women’s health is a big deal for me. Oh, there are so many. Education." 

Nashua voters in nine wards have until 8 pm to cast their ballots for governor, congress, senate and a host of other state offices. 

Light Turnout in Plymouth Isn't a Surprise

by Sean Hurley

In Plymouth, Town Clerk Karen Freitas said turnout Tuesday was running light. Of the town’s 61-hundred registered voters, only 350 had cast ballots by 2 o’clock.

But Freitas said she’s not surprised.

Credit Sean Hurley for NHPR

"You know being in the town clerk’s office people are always coming in and registering their cars and whatever and everybody – it’s social – everybody likes to talk but we haven’t heard very much chatter about the primary at all. It’s been really quiet."

Freitas said she’s expecting 600 votes will be cast by the time the polls close this evening.

In Manchester's Ward 3, Presidential Race a Distraction

by Casey McDermott

Follow NHPR's Casey McDermott on Twitter @caseymcdermott

At noontime, turnout in Manchester’s Ward 3 was slow, according to election officials.

“I’ve asked people, are you voting, are you voting? And they say, oh yeah, we’re going to vote. And I said, Tuesday, right? And they said, this Tuesday? What’s this Tuesday? There’s so much hoopla about the presidential that they’ve got their sight on November.”

  

An Audio Postcard from Bedford's Polls

by Emily Corwin

On his way into the polls, 33-year Bedford resident, Phil Becker, told us he was still deciding between Democrats Steve Marchand, and Colin Van Ostern – for Governor. But, Becker hasn't always voted Democratic.

NHPR's Emily Corwin has this audio postcard from Bedford: