Politics

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

Clayton Allen, 21, walked right up to the 8-foot fence surrounding the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland.

He drove from Kentucky and he stood out from the crowd because he had a handgun strapped to his hip.

"I open-carry all the time," Allen said. "The Republican convention would not be the exception."

NHPR's Senior Political Reporter Josh Rogers is reporting this week from the Republican National Convention in Cleveland.

NPR also has a team of reporters on the ground.

Check this page frequently for updates, stories, photos, and to listen to live streaming coverage from the convention presented by NPR.

Click here for the live stream, which will broadcast coverage each day from 8 PM to 11 PM EST.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

On the Political Front is our occasional check-in with NHPR's Senior Political Reporter Josh Rogers.

There are at least a few things the four Republican candidates for governor can agree on.

All of them – State Representative Frank Edelblut, State Senator Jeanie Forrester, Manchester Mayor Ted Gatsas and Executive Councilor Chris Sununu – say they want to make New Hampshire more “business friendly.” 

The smartphone game Pokémon Go has quickly become one of the most-used apps in the country. Now a political advocacy group in New Hampshire is hoping to coopt some of that enthusiasm.

Sean Hurley

Here's a question: Which New Hampshire community is the best bellwether for the statewide political climate? It's not an old industrial city, or a Seacoast suburb, or a lakeside resort town. It's actually the tiny Coos County village of Shelburne.  

Chris Jenson

A for-profit college that has been a significant donor to Sen. Kelly Ayotte is being investigated by the U.S. Department of Justice.

Bridgepoint Education, the parent company of Ashford University, an online university based in California, is the subject of investigations by several federal and state agencies. The company has been accused of improper use of federal student aid and duplicitous marketing practices – in particular, luring veterans to enroll in order to gain access to federal student aid through the GI Bill.

Josh Rogers for NHPR

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders made it official today in Portsmouth: He endorsed Hillary Clinton for president. Sanders joined Clinton on stage and told a huge crowd filled with still- passionate backers of his own presidential run that he will do all he can to make sure Clinton makes it to the White House.

Allegra Boverman / NHPR

A hard-fought Democratic presidential primary comes to an end in New Hampshire Tuesday.

For Sanders supporters, this marks the end of a movement that began here with a resounding win in the first in the nation primary.

File Photo / NHPR

Ahead of a scheduled joint appearance by Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders in New Hampshire, Senator Jeanne Shaheen says she’s pleased that the FBI’s investigation into Clinton’s use of a private email server has come to a close.

Speaking to reporters in Lee, Senator Jeanne Shaheen said she is looking forward to the expected endorsement of Hillary Clinton by former rival Bernie Sanders at an event tomorrow in Portsmouth.

Kate Brindley for NHPR

"On the Political Front" is our occasional check-in with NHPR's Senior Political Reporter Josh Rogers.

 

Democratic Gov. Maggie Hassan had a stronger fundraising quarter than her U.S. Senate rival, incumbent Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Coming on the heels of last year's prolonged budget fight, with negotiations stretching months longer than usual, the 2016 session of the New Hampshire Legislature can't help but seem a bit sleepier. But, in fact, it was a busy few months for lawmakers.

Things kicked off early, actually, with a special session in November to address the state's opioid crisis. Lawmakers eventually worked through more than 1,000 bills, wrapping things up late last month. 

When the owner of Coed Sportswear in Newfields introduced Chris Sununu during a tour of the business a few weeks back, he included a line Sununu’s probably used to hearing by now. 

“He comes from a political family that has a long history of, from my perspective, making the right decisions for our country,” Mark Lane told his staff at the sportswear company, listing off one of several reasons he wanted Sununu to speak to them.

The long-running drama over Hillary Clinton's use of a personal email server during her time as secretary of state came to some resolution today as FBI Director James Comey announced that while Clinton was "extremely careless" in handling classified information, she should not face charges.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Among the Democrats running for governor this year is Executive Councilor Colin Van Ostern. He's a candidate who's no stranger to running political campaigns and is now seeking statewide office for the first time.

 Fourth of July events can draw huge crowds - and in an election year, those crowds can draw candidates. If you're looking to learn a little bit more about New Hampshire political hopefuls before you see them in parades or catch their ads on TV, NHPR's newsroom has something that might help.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Donald Trump was back in New Hampshire Thursday. The presumptive Republican presidential nominee held a private, town hall style event at a shuttered light bulb plant in Manchester.

It was Trump’s second trip here in just the last few weeks, and behind the scenes, there’s been a shakeup in his New Hampshire campaign since his last visit.

Michael Brindley/NHPR

“Keep it simple. Get it done.” That's the slogan Republican Ted Gatsas is using in his campaign for governor. It’s a theme the Manchester Mayor has turned to time and time again throughout his political career. 

Jason Moon for NHPR

Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump called for the U.S. to scale back its trade deals with foreign nations during an invitation-only speech in Manchester yesterday. Trump used a now shuttered light-bulb factory as the backdrop.

As Donald Trump events go, it was a modest affair. Only about 150 supporters sat on folding chairs in a parking lot nestled around back of the former Osram Sylvania plant in Manchester. But as Trump made clear again and again, the setting was the point.

Donald Trump roared into Bangor Wednesday afternoon into the collective embrace of about 5,000 loyal supporters at the Cross Center. The audience applauded the presumptive Republican nominee’s promises of great trade deals, expanded job opportunities and a no-exceptions immigration policy that he says will make America safe.

All of the campaign hoopla played well in the heart of Maine’s 2nd Congressional District, where large numbers of conservative voters could hand Trump one Electoral College vote if he carries the region in November.

Casey McDermott for NHPR

New Hampshire's Executive Council has approved state funding for Planned Parenthood.

The 3-2 vote on a family planning contract comes ten months after the council rejected an almost identical contract by the same margin.

Chris Sununu has voted for state contracts with Planned Parenthood , and he's voted against them.

This one, which would send $638,000 to seven clinics, five run by Planned Parenthood. It would subsidize low cost birth control, STD testing, and cancer screenings. 

The fight over the contract could prove a big moment in the race for governor. Democrats, including fellow councilor and gubernatorial candidate Colin Van Ostern are pushing Sununu, who identifies as pro-choice, to support the contract. 

via C-Span

Mark Connolly is running for Governor. Today, he runs his own small investment company. But his resume runs the spectrum from financial executive to deputy secretary of state.

There are a lot of reasons to run for office. Ideological convictions. Hunger for power. A sense of duty to serve. But Connolly seems driven by a desire to improve what he sees as the technical and structural weaknesses in Concord.

A newspaper correspondent observing Abraham Lincoln's second inauguration in March 1865 — delivered to a crowd "as far as the eye could reach" — noted that the president laid his right hand on a Bible and, facing Supreme Court Chief Justice Salmon Chase, swore to preserve, protect and defend the U.S. Constitution.

"Then," the reporter noted, "solemnly repeating 'So help me God!' he bent forward and reverently kissed the Book."

Paige Sutherland for NHPR

A small group of Republicans is planning an effort to deny Donald Trump the Republican nomination for President. Members of this group are concerned that Trump’s inflammatory statements and poor fundraising figures could cost the GOP both the presidency and seats in the House and Senate. 

Paige Sutherland/NHPR

There are four candidates in the 2016 gubernatorial Republican primary, most with several years’ experience in New Hampshire politics. Then there’s Frank Edelblut. The first-term state lawmaker from Wilton is casting himself as a business-savvy outsider who understands the evolving economy.

josh rogers/nhpr

The state reps gathered in the house well. They mostly talked about how the nation needs to break the gridlock on the gun debate. Jackie Cilley represents Barrington.

"It is a war zone, and there are practical, sensible solutions that we can promulgate and legislators, nationally and in this state that will make it a little less so."

When Governor Hassan joined the sit in, she spoke briefly, but pointedly on guns.

"It is absolutely essential that we expand background checks, so that known and suspected terrorist can't buy guns at gun shows or online."

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

There's a wide fundraising gap between two of the Democrats hoping to become New Hampshire's next governor.

Candidates are not required to file campaign finance reports until Aug. 24, less than a month before the Sept. 13 primary. But Executive Councilor Colin Van Ostern and businessman Mark Connolly filed reports Wednesday, a deadline for non-candidate committees to file.

In the wake of last week's mass shooting in Orlando, the debate over guns and how to keep them away from potential terrorists has been center stage in the U.S. Senate.  And so has New Hampshire’s Kelly Ayotte.

A bill she helped draft Monday aims to bar suspected terrorists from buying guns, and the issue of gun control is looking to be key to her re-election effort this year. But Ayotte’s involvement with gun policy and politics extends farther back that her six years in the U.S Senate.

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