Political news from New Hampshire Public Radio, from the State House to the First in the Nation Primary.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

New Hampshire lawmakers Friday declined to move forward with a workforce development program championed by Gov. Maggie Hassan. The initiative, which was scheduled to start last month, would use unspent federal money to provide job training for welfare recipients.


Two new polls show Democrat Hillary Clinton maintaining her lead over Republican Donald Trump in New Hampshire.

A UMass Lowell/7News poll released Thursday found 45 percent of likely voters backing Clinton, and 39 percent backing Trump. Libertarian Gary Johnson had 9 percent support in the poll.

In the survey of 517 likely voters conducted Oct. 7-11, 4 percent of voters said they were still undecided.

Paige Sutherland/NHPR

First Lady Michelle Obama hosted a rally for Hillary Clinton Thursday afternoon at Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester.

But Obama's speech didn’t focus on Clinton but rather on Donald Trump’s treatment of women.


For the latest in our series of “Conversations with the Candidates” leading up to Election Day, NHPR is sitting down with Republican Jim Lawrence to talk about his bid for New Hampshire’s 2nd Congressional District Seat — and we’re looking for your questions.

Paige Sutherland/NHPR

Governor Maggie Hassan signed an executive order Wednesday calling for the creation of the state’s first ever committee designed to analyze drug overdose deaths. 

National security has proven to be a pivotal issue in this year's Senate race between Sen. Kelly Ayotte and Gov. Maggie Hassan.

Ayotte, a Republican, has cast herself as a strong advocate for the nation's security, pointing to her record in the Senate. Hassan, a Democrat, has taken some positions that put her at odds with her own party and President Obama.

Jason Moon for NHPR

Democratic candidate Colin Van Ostern says as governor, he would invest in job training programs to strengthen the state’s workforce.

Speaking with representatives from the state’s community college system and healthcare employers, Colin Van Ostern stressed the need for more certificate and associate degree programs to help address the state’s labor shortage in key areas like nursing.

AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta

With New Hampshire seen as a key battleground state in the presidential race, both sides will continue to focus their attention on the Granite State this week.

Michelle Obama will visit New Hampshire Thursday to campaign for Hillary Clinton.

The First Lady will hold a rally for the Democratic presidential nominee at Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester. 

And after holding an event in Sandown last week, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is scheduled to return for a campaign rally Saturday in Portsmouth.

NHPR Staff

After months of walking a tightrope when it comes to her position on Donald Trump, New Hampshire Republican Senator Kelly Ayotte now says she can’t support her party’s presidential nominee.

This comes after the release of an 11-year-old video in which Trump bragged about using his position of power to sexually assault women.

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."

Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton face off in the second presidential debate Sunday night at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri.

NPR's politics team, with help from reporters and editors who cover national security, immigration, business, foreign policy and more, is live annotating the debate. Portions of the debate with added analysis are highlighted, followed by context and fact check from NPR reporters and editors. 

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.”

Editor's note: This post contains language that is crude and explicit and that many will find offensive.

Updated 11:15 p.m. ET with comments by Trump supporters

Just two days before Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are set to meet for their second presidential debate, more damaging audio of the GOP nominee using crude language about women and how he would hit on them has surfaced.

Sara Plourde for NHPR

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders was back in New Hampshire today. The former Democratic presidential candidate was campaigning for his former rival Hillary Clinton.

He was also here to support New Hampshire Gov. Maggie Hassan's bid for U.S. Senate. Sanders spoke with NHPR's Peter Biello.


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.  

Save the Children Action Network


Early-learning programs have always been a tough sell in New Hampshire. Child advocates and educators have tried for years to break lawmakers’ resistance to the idea, yet a proposal to put more 5-year-olds in all-day kindergarten can still roil Concord for months.

A Washington, D.C. political group with deep pockets, a team of lobbyists and a small army of volunteers wants to change that.

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. 

Democrat Tim Kaine and Republican Mike Pence square off in the vice-presidential debate tonight. The NPR Politics team, with help from reporters and editors who cover national security, immigration, business, foreign policy and more, is following along and will be annotating and fact-checking in real time.

Portions of the debate with added analysis are highlighted below, followed by context and fact check from NPR reporters and editors. Follow highlights of the debate in NPR's updating news story at npr.org.

Casey McDermott, NHPR

Just how bad, in Chris Sununu’s view, is the red tape facing New Hampshire businesses these days?

“We’ve become more like a regulatory police state, in many aspects,” Sununu said on a visit to Maverick Integration, an automation technology company in Nashua.

Chris Jenson

Kelly Ayotte’s reelection race was always going to be a steep uphill climb. She’s facing a relatively popular opponent in Gov. Maggie Hassan, an electorate looking for change, and the more Democrat-friendly New Hampshire voters who typically turn out in presidential years.

But as Ayotte struggles to reach escape velocity, the pull of Donald Trump’s unpopularity threatens to keep her earthbound. 

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.

Allegra Boverman, Jason Moon for NHPR

Battles over funding for Planned Parenthood have become a familiar political drama over the past several years.

In this year’s gubernatorial election, Democrat Colin Van Ostern is hoping to use his opponent Republican Chris Sununu’s history on the issue against him. But the history can get complicated.


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.


Credit: NHPR

Read All About It: Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Maggie Hassan recently joined NHPR's Laura Knoy and Josh Rogers for an hour-long discussion -- part of our Conversations with the Candidates series. 

Casey McDermott, NHPR

New Hampshire’s Executive Council has always been quietly powerful: The five-member board has the final say on most major state contracts and nominations to state agencies, among other critical responsibilities that keep the state running.

But it was never a required stop for someone looking to rise the political ranks in New Hampshire, and it’s not exactly known as a place for high-profile political battles.

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.

AP Photo, Matt Rourke

Hillary Clinton’s campaign is working hard to woo young voters in New Hampshire -- a group that voted overwhelmingly in favor of her opponent, Bernie Sanders, just 8 months ago. But Wednesday, the two worked together to try and get those same young voters as excited about Clinton as they once were for Sanders.

Allegra Boverman, NHPR

Leading up to our conversation with Gov. Maggie Hassan, the Democratic nominee for U.S. Senate, we asked what you’d want to ask her, if given the chance.

Here’s a roundup of her responses on some of the topics you told us wanted to hear Hassan weigh in on.

Last year, we started asking the presidential candidates who stopped by NHPR's offices to deliver their best "elevator pitches" on the way into our studios. Now that we're heading into the final stretch of the election season, we're reviving this feature — this time, with the candidates for statewide office.


Back in January, former New Hampshire governor John H. Sununu warned voters against “drinking the Trump Kool-Aid.”

On Tuesday, Sununu poured himself a glass and took a big sip.