The headline of the 2018 New Hampshire primary results was a big victory for one Democratic candidate running for governor.
Among other races at the polls on Tuesday, September 11 were Democratic and Republican primaries for the New Hampshire 1st Congressional District, an open seat this Fall. Find out who won these Granite State elections.
Select final results will appear in this space; until then, please visit the Politico link for up-to-the minute results.
2018 New Hampshire Primary Results: Democratic Gubernatorial Primary
Incumbent Governor Chris Sununu, a Republican, had no challenge in his own primary. The only thing left to settle is who would face him, and it did not take long on election night to get the answer.
Molly Kelly, a former state senator, easily won the Democratic primary over Steve Marchand, previously mayor of Portsmouth. Kelly served in the New Hampshire Senate for a decade in a district centered on Keene in the southwestern part of the state.
She ran on a progressive platform, and one of her key focuses (as a senator and gubernatorial candidate) is education.
As for Marchand, he served just for two years as Portsmouth’s mayor from 2006 to 2008, sworn into office just short of his 32nd birthday. Since then, he has made several runs for statewide office. He briefly ran for US Senate in 2007, and previously ran for governor in 2016.
With 58 percent of the vote counted, Kelly doubled up Marchand with almost 67 percent of the vote. Kelly was winning in every county, with the closest being Grafton at a 60-40 margin. The final result was close in proximity, with Kelly sweeping New Hampshire.
Governors in New Hampshire serve two-year terms; Vermont is the only other state to hold onto this political throwback. Governor Sununu is considered to be the favorite for re-election in this state trending blue.
2018 New Hampshire Primary Results: US House Races
Two US House seats are up for grabs in November, both held by Democrats. One of them, Carol Shea-Porter (NH-01) is not seeking re-election. You can imagine that the race to succeed her drew significant attention from Democrats and Republicans.
Out of a field of 11 candidates, Chris Pappas emerged the winner on the Democratic side for the New Hampshire 1st Congressional District. Pappas is an Executive Councilor from District 4, including Manchester, Bow, Londonderry, and Chichester. His next-closest Democratic rival was Maura Sullivan, a former Department of Defense official during the Obama presidency. One criticism of her, from more than one place, was her lack of ties to the Granite State.
In the end, Sullivan was not close to winning. Pappas had 45 percent with 55 percent of the vote reporting, while Sullivan lagged far behind at just under 30 percent. No other candidate reached double-digits. His ultimate margin narrowed somewhat, but Pappas still owned a comfortable victory with all votes counted.
Republicans nominated Eddie Edwards in a close race over Andy Sanborn. Edwards is a former police chief from South Hampton, while Sanborn is a state senator for the 9th District, which spans from Jaffrey to Peterborough. Edwards led Sanborn 48 percent to 40 on 63 of 114 precints, with all others in single digits. Final results showed Edwards just under a majority in NH-01.
Meanwhile, in the New Hampshire 2nd Congressional District, the race to take on Rep. Annie Kuster (D) was too close to call for much of the night. Eventually, Steve Negron prevailed.
It had been a very tight three-way election featuring Negron, Stewart Levenson, and Lynne Blankenbeker remains at hand. Only a few hundred votes separated leader Negron and Levenson with 60 percent counted, with Blankenbeker slipping further behind Levenson as the night progressed. None of the other four Republican candidates were in contention.
Negron is a state representative for Hillsborough 32, a district in Nashua. Levenson is a rheumatologist who made news as a whistleblower during his time as chair of the Manchester VA Medical Center’s Department of Medicine. Finally, Blankenbeker was a state representative from Concord from 2009 to 2012.
2018 New Hampshire Primary Results: Other Notable Results
Many races for State Senate and New Hampshire Executive Council were uncontested. Just three Executive Council primaries took place in five total seats. The only incumbent who faced opposition was GOP councilor Joseph Kenney of District 1, who handily defeated Kim Strathdee.
In a different Executive Council race, former Manchester mayor Ted Gatsas won the GOP District 4 primary in a landslide over Jane Cormier. Gatsas had 68 percent with almost four-fifths of precincts counted. He ended up with 67 percent.