Defense Policy and Politics

March 12, 2021 | Virtual

Connor O’Brien will join NHIOP executive director, Neil Levesque via zoom to discuss his work covering Congress as a senior defense reporter for POLITICO. In nearly a decade of reporting on Capitol Hill, he has closely covered the House and Senate Armed Services Committees, the annual National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), budget and appropriations bills and action on the House and Senate floor.  Connor's coverage emphasizes the 'politics of defense' -- the personalities, political trends, and coalitions in Congress, the Pentagon and industry that shape national security policy and the $700+ billion defense budget.

Connor has interviewed top lawmakers such as John McCain, traveled with two Secretaries of Defense, and reported on several major national security news stories. Connor was part of a team of POLITICO reporters who in August 2019 broke news that the Trump administration was withholding military aid to Ukraine, a scandal that became central to Donald Trump’s first impeachment trial. His work on Politico’s Morning Defense newsletter is a must read, providing a snapshot of the day’s biggest national security stories.

Prior to joining POLITICO, Connor covered defense, national security and veterans issues for CQ Roll Call. Connor moved to Washington, D.C., shortly after he graduated in 2010. Connor was hired by CQ as a state legislative researcher and became a full-time reporter in 2013, where roamed the halls of the Capitol and learned the intricacies of the legislative process.

A NH native, Connor attended Saint Anselm College to study politics and was a member of the NHIOP’s Kevin Harrington Student Ambassador program. He credits his time at Saint A’s for his interest in politics and for a liberal arts education that provided a strong foundation for critical thinking and writing.

A self-described “Huguenot” (a joke he stole from Family Guy) and “markup enthusiast,” Connor provides updates on Congress, defense issues and the latest episode of The Bachelor on his Twitter feed, @connorobrienNH. 


In partnership with Saint Anselm College Office of Alumni Relations and Advancement Programming.

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March 12, 2021 from 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM