Politics

Credit Daniel S. Hurd

NHPR's political coverage from the New Hampshire State House to the First In The Nation Primary, Town Meeting, and the Congressional Delegation. Stories by Senior Political Reporter Josh Rogers, Digital Journalist Brian Wallstin, and the NHPR News team. 

Tracy Lee Carroll, NHPR

A New Hampshire judge has struck down a law requiring out-of-state students to establish legal residency before being allowed to vote.

The New Hampshire Civil Liberties Union challenged the law on behalf of four out-of-state college students two years ago, shortly after lawmakers overrode a veto by then-Gov. John Lynch and passed Senate Bill 318.

Gage Skidmore via Flickr CC

Former Hewlett Packard CEO Carly Fiorina told more than 200 Republican activists that the GOP needs to do better when it comes to winning the support of women.

She said all Republicans -- but females in particular -- need to fight what she called the "baseless propaganda" that GOP is waging a war on women.

Fiorina says the best way to do that is through grassroots organizing and one to one outreach.

The New Hampshire Civil Liberties has filed a lawsuit in federal court that challenges a new state law limiting the time political parties have to collect signatures to get on the ballot.

The organization filed the lawsuit on behalf of the libertarian party.

State law now requires that political organizations collect the signatures they need in the year of the election.

Sara Plourde for NHPR

The realscottbrownrecord.com highlights what the NH PAC to Save America calls Brown’s deceptive tactic of criticizing Democrat Jeanne Shaheen for doing what he also did– support policies favored by President Obama.

Brown has made Jeanne Shaheen’s fealty to the president a key part of his campaign, but PAC adviser Mike Dennehy says Brown needs to be held to account for the fact that Congressional Quarterly found he voted with the President 78 percent of the time in 2012.

www.merrimack4th.com

If you want to catch a glimpse of New Hampshire's U.S. Senate candidates on Independence Day, head to Amherst and Merrimack.

Both parades will feature all four major candidates running this year, including incumbent Democrat Jeanne Shaheen.

She'll be joined by the three Republican challengers: former Massachusetts U.S. Senator Scott Brown, former New Hampshire U.S. Senator Bob Smith, and former state Senator Jim Rubens.

The Amherst parade kicks off at 10 at Wilkins Elementary School.

Via Flickr CC

As you're paying more at the pump today, you may be wondering where all that extra money is going.

New Hampshire's 4.2 cent increase to the state's gas tax goes into effect July 1.

The increase, the first since 1991, is expected to generate an additional $32 million annually for the state's Department of Transportation.

The legislation that enacted the increase mandates that 42 percent of that money go towards bonding for the widening of Interstate 93.

In a decision that could have implications in New Hampshire, the Supreme Court on Thursday struck down a Massachusetts law that permits a 35-foot protest-free zone outside abortion clinics.

The justices were unanimous in ruling that extending a buffer zone 35 feet from clinic entrances violates the First Amendment rights of protesters.

Today's Zaman

  Governor Maggie Hassan is in the midst of a week-long trade mission to Turkey.

 

The state's Ballot Law Commission won't delay a hearing on the residency of Republican candidate for governor Walt Havenstein.

The New Hampshire Democratic Party said Monday that it has filed a petition challenging Havenstein's claim that he's a legal resident of New Hampshire. The party says he was a resident of Maryland in 2010 and 2011, which would disqualify him from running for office here. Candidates for governor must live in New Hampshire for at least seven years.

Havenstein said he has owned a home and voted in New Hampshire for the past 15 years.

NHPR/Josh Rogers

Republican Senate candidate Scott Brown released a trove of personal financial information Friday, including eight years of state and federal tax returns and a financial disclosure statement that showed before-tax income of more than $900,000 since the former Massachusetts senator left office in January 2013.

Josh Rogers / NHPR

The Republican front runner in the race for U.S. Senate – former Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown – will not take part in a debate in Merrimack tonight with his primary challengers.

NHPR Staff

 

Gov. Maggie Hassan is opening hearings on $227 million in capital spending requests from New Hampshire agencies.

Gov. Maggie Hassan has vetoed a bill that barred New Hampshire from disclosing the names of lottery winners.

Hassan said current law recognizes winners' privacy by not requiring disclosure of their names proactively, but she said barring disclosure in all instances weakened public oversight and could lead to corruption.

Ben McLeod / Flickr Creative Commons

House Majority Leader Steve Shurtleff is announcing his candidacy to replace retiring House Speaker Terie Norelli.

The Concord Democrat is holding a news conference Thursday to announce his bid and outline some of his priorities if selected in December when the new Legislature organizes.

Mont Vernon Republican Bill O'Brien, Bartlett Republican Gene Chandler and Bedford Republican Laurie Sanborn also are seeking the leadership position. O'Brien and Chandler are former speakers.

Todd Bookman

Republican candidate for governor Walt Havenstein wants state election officials to rule on whether he meets the residency requirements to hold the office.

Immediately after filing paperwork to officially launch his candidacy against Gov. Maggie Hassan in Concord on Wednesday, Havenstein submitted a petition to the state Ballot Law Commission, asking for an expedited hearing on the residency issue.

On the Political Front this morning, NHPR's Josh Rogers talks about this year's legislative session, which wrapped up last week. 

Lawmakers passed some bills on contentious topics, but failed on others. And some notable names announced they won't seek office again.

The big bills that passed:

Jo Naylor via Flickr CC

This week All Things Considered has been looking back at some of the major legislative debates this session at the New Hampshire statehouse. 

The Medicaid Enhancement Tax usually flies under the radar in New Hampshire: it’s complicated, boring on the surface and, as far as taxes go, pretty narrowly applied.

But the MET, as it's called, has major implications for the state budget and the state’s 26 hospitals. And debate over how to fix the MET gained plenty of attention this year, becoming one of the biggest policy issues lawmakers took on in 2014. 

This week All Things Considered is looking at the key bills at the statehouse this year – which passed, which didn’t, and why.

Proponents of repealing New Hampshire's death penalty law had new allies this year, including Governor Maggie Hassan, who promised to sign a repeal measure as long as it didn't affect the sentence of Michael Addison, the state's lone death row inmate.

The State House approved a repeal measure, but the Senate deadlocked 12-12 over the bill and ultimately laid it on the table.

John Wardell via Flickr CC

All Things Considered is looking at some of the key bills of the 2014 legislative session – and how they ended up passing or failing to pass.

This year's casino debate may have seen some new lines of argument, but the outcome was the same as in years past: casino proposals won support in the State Senate, but came up short in the State House.

Reporter Norma Love of the Associated Press explains the dynamic behind this year's casino debate to NHPR's Brady Carlson.

Jimmy Emerson, Flickr CC

New Hampshire lawmakers have passed legislation that includes household pets in orders designed to protect victims of domestic violence.

Wednesday's vote sent the bill to the governor. It expands the orders to include pets in cases involving stalking and domestic violence. The bill would allow judges to grant custody of any domestic pets or farm animals to the victim and issue an order barring the abuser from harming or disposing of the animal.

Supporters argue abusers sometimes take their anger out on a pet or attempt to intimidate victims by targeting a pet.

Brian James via Flickr CC

The House and Senate have voted to tighten rules for table games operated in the name of New Hampshire charities.

Lawmakers voted Wednesday to send the governor a bill establishing new financial record-keeping and reporting requirements for charities and deeper background investigations by the attorney general.

The bill clarifies the definition of so-called redemption slot machines and the Racing and Charitable Gaming Commission's enforcement authority over them.

Josh Rogers

As he filed for office, Scott Brown said he was focused on the issues that matter.

“And what matters right now is making sure that people are getting  a good value for their dollars and they are not paying an exorbitant amount of many for their health care, and their medical care, obviously, and their energy prices.”

New Hampshire State Senate

A surprise announcement in the Senate today, as Democratic leader and former Senate president Sylvia Larsen told colleagues she will retire from the body.

Todd Bookman / NHPR

House and Senate lawmakers have signed off on a Medicaid Enhancement Tax deal.

Lawmakers voted 278-72 in favor of the deal that settles a lawsuit with 25 New Hampshire hospitals.

The Senate later passed it on a voice vote, and it now heads to Governor Maggie Hassan’s desk.

Hassan and legislative leaders announced the settlement last week, with St. Joseph Hospital of Nashua the lone holdout.

Republican Representative David Hess of Hooksett says he may not be completely happy with the result, but the deal is better than nothing.

New Hampshire candidates competing in the September primary can now sign up to get on the ballot.

The filing period for state, county and federal offices opens Wednesday and ends June 13.

The primaries will be held Sept. 9. The general election is Nov. 4. This year's top contests include the governor's race, a U.S. Senate race and the two U.S. House races.

Gov. Maggie Hassan's office said canceling a planned trade mission to Turkey would cost taxpayers $10,000 and the private businesses that will accompany the governor would lose thousands more.

In a written response to a public-records request by the conservative nonprofit Citizens for a Strong New Hampshire, Hassan's chief of staff Pamela Walsh said "non-refundable travel arrangements" had already been paid for when the governor announced a freeze on hiring and out-of-state travel.

This week All Things Considered is looking at some of the key bills of the 2014 legislative session.

One of the most high-profile bills at the statehouse this year was a plan to ban the use of hand-held cell phones while driving.

Garry Rayno covers the statehouse for the New Hampshire Union Leader. He explains to All Things Considered host Brady Carlson how the bill came to pass the House and Senate, and some of the details of the measure.

Josh Rogers

  NHPR's Brady Carlson talks with Boston Globe reporter Todd Wallack.

Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Scott Brown has been back on the campaign trail this week, but it's the former Massachusetts Senator's work outside of politics that's now getting a lot of attention.

New Hampshire residents have one more day to register to vote in the September primary elections.

Tuesday is both the last day for new voter registration and the last day those already registered can change their party affiliations. Undeclared voters may vote in either the Republican or Democratic primaries.

The primaries will be held Sept. 9. Candidates can start signing up to get on the ballot Wednesday. The filing period ends June 13.

NHPR Staff

Lawmakers in the House and Senate this week will consider a deal between the state and hospitals on the Medicaid Enhancement Tax.

The deal, largely brokered by Governor Maggie Hassan, pulls 25 of the state’s 26 hospitals out of a lawsuit.

Two Superior Court judges had ruled the tax in its current form unconstitutional, and a ruling is pending before the state Supreme Court.

As NHPR’s Josh Rogers reports, the deal isn’t being seeing a positive step by all.

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