As New Hampshire voters go to the polls, the No. 1 issue on their minds may surprise you.
One-quarter of New Hampshire adults believe that drug abuse is the most important problem facing the state, according to the most recent WMUR Granite State Poll conducted by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center. It is the first time since 2008 that New Hampshire residents cited something other than jobs and the economy as the No. 1 state issue. Drugs also topped taxes, health care, education and the state budget as issues of concern for New Hampshire residents.
Fears of drug overdose in the small state have soared as a record number of opioid-linked deaths have occurred in New Hampshire, with about one person each day dying as a result of heroin or painkiller overdose. The survey results show how widely the drug issue has cut across the state's population in a short period of time.
As recently as February 2013, no New Hampshire residents had cited the drug issue as the state's "most important." But in the past year alone, the percentage of residents who ranked the issue as the "most important" grew from 4 percent (February 2015) to 25 percent (October 2015).
"Jobs/economy" was down to 21 percent in the most recent survey.