Kelly Ayotte

When Gov. Maggie Hassan went public this week with her plans to take challenge Republican Kelly Ayotte for her U.S. Senate seat, she didn’t do it in a room full of supporters or while standing behind a bunting-draped podium. She headed straight to the internet with a video announcing her run.

Screenshot via YouTube

NHPR’s Josh Rogers spoke with All Things Considered host Peter Biello to discuss Gov. Maggie Hassan's announcement that she is running for U.S. Senate in 2016.

BIELLO: So, long anticipated, now official. What’s this mean?

NHPR Staff

Gov. Maggie Hassan said Monday she is running for the U.S. Senate, setting up a long-anticipated contest against incumbent Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte. 

Brady Carlson / NHPR

  New Hampshire’s US Senators continue to call for reauthorizing the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund.

Republican Kelly Ayotte and Democrat Jeanne Shaheen were among those last week who unsuccessfully tried to pass a 60 day extension of the fund.

Speaking on the Senate floor last week, Shaheen said there was a perception the program was primarily used to acquire federal land. She said most of the funding for federal projects was instead used on existing parks, refuges and conservation areas:

Chris Jensen for NHPR


New Hampshire Senator Kelly Ayotte is boldly taking on a role most of her fellow Republicans have disdained: public foil to Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz.

Readying for what could be a tough re-election bid in an increasingly swing state, Ayotte has challenged the Texas senator as he has pushed for a government shutdown over funds for Planned Parenthood.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

New Hampshire U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte is urging Republican colleagues not to risk a government shutdown over efforts to de-fund Planned Parenthood.

Speaking on the Senate floor Tuesday, Ayotte was blunt: It’s time for Republicans to face reality.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

Planned Parenthood funding was a rallying cry during Saturday’s state Democratic convention and Jeanne Shaheen kept at an Exeter Planned Parenthood clinic.

“It’s very disappointing to see extremists using this issue as a political football at the expense of women’s health.”

NHPR Staff

With re-authorization of the Export-Import Bank stalled in Congress, several New Hampshire companies say they are feeling the impact.  New Hampshire’s two US Senators Kelly Ayotte and Jeanne Shaheen as well as 2nd District Congresswoman Ann McLane Kuster support re-authorization, while 1st District Congressman Frank Guinta has yet to take a position.

New Hampshire’s U.S. Senators are holding a field hearing today on the state’s small business workforce.

Jeanne Shaheen and Kelly Ayotte will host a roundtable discussion with a group of business and educational leaders this morning at Manchester Community College.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR


New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte is urging the Health and Human Services secretary to work with the state to ease costly requirements for some residential drug treatment centers to obtain a health care facility license.

She said recent reports indicate that stringent licensing requirements could force several centers to cut the number of available beds and reduce their ability to serve people dealing with substance abuse issues.

Ayotte said this is a serious concern in light of state's heroin and prescription drug addiction crisis.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR


Sen. Jeanne Shaheen says she will support the Iranian nuclear deal negotiated by President Barack Obama's administration when it comes to the Senate floor.

The deal calls on Iran to curb its nuclear capabilities in exchange for relief from economic sanctions.

Shaheen, a Democrat, says the deal is "the best available option" for preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon" and that there are no credible alternatives to curb Iran's nuclear ambitions that do not involve the military.


New Hampshire Democratic Senator Jeanne Shaheen says she’ll vote against legislation to defund Planned Parenthood.

Speaking on the Senate floor Wednesday, Senator Shaheen says stripping Planned Parenthood of more than $500 million in federal funding would make it harder for millions of women, including 12,000 in New Hampshire, to get the health care they need.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR


New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte is heading a subcommittee hearing that will focus on best practices at shipyards.

The hearing before the Readiness and Management Support Subcommittee on Wednesday will look at new training techniques, efficiency initiatives, management and labor cooperation, apprentice programs and the role of shipyards in sustaining naval readiness.

Ayotte invited Paul O'Connor to testify. He's the president of the Metal Trades Council at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard.

The council represents 2,500 tradesmen and women at the shipyard.

Brady Carlson / NHPR

Sen. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire is backing a measure to streamline the effort to stop cyberattacks against government computer networks.

File photos / NHPR


New Hampshire senators Jeanne Shaheen and Kelly Ayotte are supporting a rewrite of the education law known as No Child Left Behind that aims to give power back to the states.

They joined 79 other senators Thursday in passing the bill. Both say it will help restore local control in education. The senators also supported amendments to better promote science, technology, engineering and math education and to address mental health and substance abuse issues.

File photos / NHPR

New Hampshire’s US Senators say they’re going to carefully review the details of the nuclear deal announced today between Iran and several world powers.

In a statement, Republican Senator Kelly Ayotte calls the deal quote “an historic capitulation,” saying it lacks the ability to make sure Iran complies with the terms of the deal.

Democrat Jeanne Shaheen says she’s also concerned about how to keep Iran honest, but she’s less critical of the deal.

On The Political Front is our weekly conversation with NHPR's Senior Political Reporter Josh Rogers. This week, a look at what's going on behind the scenes of New Hampshire's state budget battle.  

It’s now been a couple of weeks since Gov. Maggie Hassan vetoed the state budget. Very quiet weeks if the measure is true progress towards a budget deal, but very loud ones in terms of the partisan rhetoric about the budget. 

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Sen. Kelly Ayotte, expected to face a tough re-election battle next year, has received a $500,000 donation from a Republican entrepreneur who wants his party to confront climate change.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

  Republican U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte kicked off her re-election bid Tuesday night in Manchester.

She spoke with NHPR's Morning Edition about seeking a second term, and weighed in on last week's two historic decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Historically, this is a bit early to make an announcement. We’re still 17 months out from the election. Is this is a move as some have suggested to get a jump on your likely Democratic opponent Gov. Maggie Hassan, who’s embroiled in her own state budget battle?

Republican Senator Kelly Ayotte kicks off her bid for reelection Tuesday night in Manchester.

Ayotte is seeking her second term in the U.S. Senate, but the election isn’t until November of next year.

Kelly Ayotte in Portsmouth
Cheryl Senter / NHPR


Republican U.S. Sen. Kelly Ayotte is officially kicking off her re-election campaign this week.

Ayotte told supporters in an email Sunday that she will start campaigning for a second term on Tuesday, with a rally in Manchester. She says she is running again because she wants to continue fighting for New Hampshire.

New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte is joining with three fellow Republicans to introduce legislation to eliminate what they view as an outdated and duplicative government agency.

The bill, dubbed the "Just Google It Act," would eliminate the National Technical Information Services. Ayotte and her co-sponsors say the agency prints and sells copies of government documents that can be found for free online through a simple search.

Kelly Ayotte in Portsmouth
Cheryl Senter / NHPR

Sen. Kelly Ayotte continues to call for 1st District Congressman Frank Guinta to resign.

In an interview with NHPR's Morning Edition, Ayotte said if Guinta stays in office, the attention will continue to be on the Federal Election Commission's finding that he accepted more than $300,000 in illegal campaign donations from his parents in 2010. 

Thomas Fearon / NHPR


U.S. Sens. Kelly Ayotte and Jeanne Shaheen are inviting New Hampshire veterans to attend a forum at Saint Anselm College to discuss the Veterans Choice Card program.

The card provides "backup" care if a veteran cannot be seen by a Veterans Affairs facility in 30 days or if the VA's closest medical facility is challenging to access. In situations like this, Veterans are eligible to receive care outside of the VA.

  A report on bipartisanship in Congress finds Senators from New Hampshire and Maine among the most likely to work with members of the other party. 

The only two Republican Senators from New England scored high on the Bipartisan Index put out by the Lugar Center and Georgetown University

Maine's Susan Collins was ranked most likely to reach across the aisle, with New Hampshire's Kelly Ayotte seventh.

Brady Carlson / NHPR

New Hampshire’s US senators are holding a forum Tuesday afternoon to discuss the Veterans Administration’s new Choice Card program.

The program, established in the overhaul of the VA in 2014, allows veterans to use private medical providers if their VA center is too busy or too far away. The latter has been an issue in New Hampshire, a state in which the VA has facilities but no full-service hospital.

File photos / NHPR

Both of New Hampshire’s US Senators voted in favor of giving President Obama additional trade powers.

The Senate voted 62 to 37 Friday to approve so-called “fast track” negotiating authority, in which Congress can ratify or reject, but not change, trade agreements presented by the president.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

N.H.’s top GOP officeholder says Congressman Frank Guinta owes voters a full accounting in the wake of Federal Election Commission settlement that found Guinta accepted $355,000 in illegal campaign donations from his parents in 2009 and 2010. 

US Senator Kelly Ayotte helped Guinta's campaign committee raise money last fall.  That same committee must now refund the $355,000 Guinta accepted from his parents.


The U.S. Senate has passed legislation that makes sure death benefits paid to families of public safety officer who are killed in the line of duty are not subject to federal income tax.

U.S. Sens. Kelly Ayotte and Jeanne Shaheen introduced the bill and say it's now headed to the president for his signature.

Federal survivor benefits are not subject to federal taxation but Ayotte's office says New Hampshire law enforcement personnel were concerned about an ambiguity in the law regarding the tax treatment of state-based survivor benefits programs.

File photos / NHPR

New Hampshire's U.S. senators have voted to confirm Loretta Lynch as attorney general.

Lynch was confirmed Thursday by a vote of 56-43.

Every Democrat in the Senate voted to confirm, including Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, who called the appointment of a black woman to the nation's top law enforcement job a historic achievement. Shaheen said Lynch has "sterling credentials" and a commitment to public service.

Sen. Kelly Ayotte joined nine other Republicans to support Lynch, calling her clearly qualified.