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Sununu vetoes bill to hold NH state primary in August

Associated Press
Published: 7/30/2021 3:42:46 PM

Republican Gov. Chris Sununu on Friday vetoed a bill that would have moved up the date of New Hampshire’s state primary elections from September to the first Tuesday in August.

New Hampshire is known for its first-in-the-nation presidential primary every four years, but its state primary, held the second Tuesday in September, is one of the nation’s latest.

Sununu, in his veto message, said he agrees with Secretary of State Bill Gardner, who’s run New Hampshire’s elections for 45 years, that the bill “creates more problems than it solves.”

Sununu said the date change would move the elections and the campaign season into the middle of the summer, a time when more people would be enjoying their vacations than participate in the electoral process. He also said that moving the date to the summer could make it harder for communities to recruit poll workers and Election Day volunteers.

The governor said some advocates of the bill “point to the supposed challenge of election officials meeting the deadlines to send absentee ballots to members of the military or other overseas Granite Staters.” But Sununu said New Hampshire has never failed to meet those deadlines.

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