Is primary deserved?
To the Editor: New Hampshire’s right to hold the country’s first presidential primary every four years gets challenged occasionally, and public radio’s new reporting project on the primary — “Stranglehold Podcast” — clearly will question New Hampshire’s claim that it deserves to vote first.
Part of that claim is that we do democracy better than most states.
In fact, a growing number of states are leaving us in the dust.
They are making elections fairer by blocking the form of cheating known as gerrymandering.
They are making it easier for eligible voters to register and vote. They are blocking or forcing disclosure of political dark money. And they are making voters rather than special interests the main funders of campaigns.
If I lived in a state leading the way on those reforms, I’d be working to make its presidential primary first rather than New Hampshire’s.
The Legislature votes next week on whether to override Gov. Chris Sununu’s vetoes of four democracy reform bills: House Bill 706, to have a citizen commission draw election districts in public rather than members of the dominant party in a back room; Senate Bills 106 and 156 to limit dark money; and House Bill 504 to restore the rights of Congress and states to regulate Big Money politics.
Overriding all four vetoes would benefit all voters and political parties and send a message that New Hampshire indeed cares about doing democracy well.