Primary candidates cost New Hampshire more than a quarter-million dollars in security, report says

Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump (R) shakes hands with Manchester Police Chief Nick Willard (L) while speaking to members of the Manchester police department during a visit in February.
Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump (R) shakes hands with Manchester Police Chief Nick Willard (L) while speaking to members of the Manchester police department during a visit in February. –Justin Lane / EPA

The New Hampshire primary has its benefits. But it also has its costs.

Granite State taxpayers had to pick up the tab for more than a quarter-million dollars in state police security details for some of the presidential candidates, according to a report Monday by NHPR.

In total, the regular pay, benefits, overtime and comp time for state troopers providing security for Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, Donald Trump, Ben Carson, and Chris Christie — as well as former President Bill Clinton — added up to $266,559.46.

In addition to 3,026 hours of regular time, state troopers logged 1,631 in overtime during the five months leading up to the state February 9 primary, which Sanders and Trump won, respectively.

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Both the Clintons, Sanders, Trump, and Carson also requested Secret Service protection during the campaign.

But it’s also New Hampshire’s traditional policy to provide such security to candidates, as requested. According to NHPR, there is no specific allocation money for the extra security and the state Department of Safety must budget around it.

As NHPR notes, the total costs to New Hampshire taxpayers to provide security to candidates likely soar even higher, if security provided by local cities and towns were included. In one example, the town of Windham reportedly grappled with security costs up to $1,300 for one Clinton event.

Fortunately, there were no major security issues during the state’s primary season.

Read NHPR’s full report here.

 

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