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John Gregg: Simple Question, Non-Answer

J P Marzullo, the former Deering, N.H., selectman running in a contested Republican primary for the New Hampshire Senate District 8 seat held by the retiring state Sen. Bob Odell, R-New London, is a relative newcomer to politics. But Marzullo, who grew up in Connecticut and moved to New Hampshire only nine years ago, has certainly been active in recent years, starting in the Contoocook Valley with the Tea Party crowd and rising to become vice chairman of the Republican State Committee before seeking elected

John Gregg: Voting Time Nears

Vermont voters will head to the polls Tuesday for the state primary election, though there is only limited contested action across the ballot. At least two Upper Valley residents are seeking statewide office, hoping to challenge Democratic incumbents in November. Pomfret Republican Scott Milne, head of Milne Travel, is in a three-way gubernatorial primary against fringe candidates Emily Peyton , of Putney, and Steve Berry , of Wolcott. But Libertarian Dan Feliciano , of Essex Junction, is also hoping to get on the GOP general

John Gregg: Shaheen Poll Numbers Rise; Brown Says GOP Will Unite

There was some good news for two New Hampshire Democrats in the latest WMUR Granite State Poll released this week. U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, the former Democratic governor seeking her second term in Washington, has seen a boost in her favorability rating and is leading her potential Republican rivals by double-digits, according to poll numbers released Wednesday by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center. And U.S. Rep. Annie Kuster, D-N.H., who could face a tough challenge in the second Congressional district, has also seen

John Gregg: Dartmouth College’s President Driven by Data, Critical Thinking

During a visit with the Valley News editorial board last week, Dartmouth President Phil Hanlon made clear that he is “passionate” — and knowledgeable — about higher education and the changes ahead. The 1977 Dartmouth graduate, who went on to earn a doctorate from California Institute of Technology and serve as provost at University of Michigan, also made clear that he is a mathematician at heart who believes in the power of information technology as it helps, or threatens, to transform higher education. “IT has

John Gregg: Cryans to Seek Executive Council Seat Again

Hanover Democrat Mike Cryans is going to run again for the District 1 Executive Council seat now held by Wakefield Republican Joe Kenney. Cryans, a longtime Grafton County commissioner, narrowly lost to Kenney in a March 11 special election to succeed the late Ray Burton, a Bath Republican who had held the seat for decades. Turnout was relatively low, and Cryans won 48.5 percent of the vote, falling short of Kenney, a former state senator, by 1,266 votes. “I am running again, I thought I’d

John Gregg: Shumlin Speaks Out on Utility Lines

Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin this week reiterated his opposition to the Keystone XL oil pipeline, saying the proposal to carry oil extracted from tar sands in western Canada to the U.S. Gulf Coast would contribute to global warming. “If we can’t get through our thick heads — after what we have been through as a nation in terms of weather challenges, just since (Barack) Obama has been president — that we can’t afford to burn every drop of fossil fuel that we can extract from

John Gregg: N.H. Republican Establishment Weighs In on Candidates

Two mainstream New Hampshire Republicans are lining up support from some known quantities in the GOP establishment as they face primary contests this summer. Former defense contractor Walt Havenstein this week released the names of seven sitting state senators — a majority of the 13-member Republican caucus — who have endorsed him in his bid to unseat Democratic Gov. Maggie Hassan. Havenstein, the former CEO of BAE Systems, faces a primary against libertarian-leaning Republican strategist Andrew Hemingway of Bristol. But Havenstein’s campaign said the state

John Gregg: Candidates Stepping Forward for Odell’s Senate Seat

A second Hillsborough County Republican has said he plans to run for the Newport-area New Hampshire Senate seat long held by state Sen. Bob Odell, R-New London. And a Democrat from Sunapee also acknowledged yesterday she is seriously considering a bid for the District 8 Senate seat. Weare Republican Jerry Little — the former president and executive director of the New Hampshire Bankers Association — said on Wednesday he was encouraged weeks ago by Odell to consider a run if the incumbent retired. Odell, a

John Gregg: Odell May Face Primary Challenge

Newport-area state Sen. Bob Odell, one of the most influential lawmakers in Concord over the past decade, may be facing a primary challenge from a conservative Republican. The reason: challenger J.P. Marzullo, a former Deering, N.H., selectman who is vice chairman of the New Hampshire Republican State Committee, doesn’t think Odell is conservative enough. Marzullo, who referred to Odell as a “liberal senator” in his announcement, said he is especially disappointed that Odell and two other top Republican senators supported Medicaid expansion as part of

John Gregg: Hanover Republican Highlights Differences With Brown on Guns

Former U.S. Sen. Scott Brown, the emigre from Massachusetts, is drawing most of the media attention and national Republican money in his likely run for U.S. Senate in New Hampshire. But that hasn’t stopped former state Sen. Jim Rubens, the Hanover Republican already in the primary, from ramping up his aggressive grassroots campaigning in recent weeks. Rubens, a centrist who has notably opposed both expanded gambling and global warming, last month met with gun rights supporters across the state to highlight his opposition to an