Check out these political snippets on primary results, congressional and gubernatorial races from across the country.
May 17 and 24 Primary Results
Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville), who former President Donald Trump rescinded his endorsement because, at the time, it was viewed his campaign was going nowhere, rebounded to capture second position (29.2%) and advance to the June 21st runoff election. The first place finisher is former Business Council of Alabama President & CEO Katie Britt (44.7%). Both defeated retired “Black Hawk Down” pilot Mike Durant (23.3%), whose self-funded campaign fell short of the mark in what was an expensive three-way race.
In the contested Republican gubernatorial primary, Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey (R) won re-nomination with 54% of the vote against eight Republican opponents. Here, too, GOP turnout was much higher than the Democrats’ over 645,000 to 168,000. In both Georgia and Alabama, the Trump endorsements clearly lacked the punch we have seen in the other early primaries.
Sen. John Boozman* turned back three Republican challengers to win his re-nomination outright with 58% of the vote. All four GOP US House members were also re-nominated, though 2nd District Rep. French Hill* (R-Little Rock) posted a surprisingly low 58.5%.
The open Governor’s race produced no surprise. Former Trump Press Secretary and daughter of ex-Governor Mike Huckabee, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, won a landslide Republican nomination with 83.2% of the vote. She will easily replace term-limited Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R) in the Autumn election.
Gov. Brian Kemp turned back former Sen. David Perdue with an unpredicted landslide 74% in what was clearly the most anticipated race of the evening. While polling showed that the Governor would be re-nominated, a huge 74-22% vote spread was unforeseen. Considering where Gov. Kemp started after the 2020 election and former President Donald Trump piling on him up until the day of this vote, Mr. Kemp’s win was extraordinary within a primary turnout of just under 1.2 million GOP voters, the size of which has not been previously seen.
Also scoring big was Herschel Walker in the US Senate Republican primary. He won with over 68% of the vote and now advances to face Sen. Raphael Warnock (D) in the general election. Sen. Warnock had only minor opposition in the Democratic primary and captured 96% of the 713,000+ Democratic votes that have been recorded.
In the 7th Congressional District Democratic incumbent pairing contest, Rep. Lucy McBath (D-Marietta) scored a huge 63-31% victory over freshman Rep. Carolyn Bourdeaux (D-Suwanee). The two incumbents became paired when the Republican map drawers decided to make the new 6th District safely Republican, thus forcing Ms. McBath into the adjoining 7th CD.
Late polling missed the Secretary of State’s race. It appeared that US Rep. Jody Hice (R-Greensboro) would force incumbent Brad Raffensperger into a runoff, but such did not happen as the latter man topped 52%, and won outright the Republican nomination. This result, too, was relatively strong as Mr. Raffensperger carried virtually every county that was outside of Rep. Hice’s congressional district.
In the two open GOP congressional districts, June 21st runoffs will occur for both. In the 6th District, physician and 7th District 2020 GOP nominee Rich McCormick (43.2%) and former state Ethics Commission chairman Jake Evans (23.0%), who both former President Donald Trump and ex-House Speaker Newt Gingrich endorsed, advance to the secondary election.
In Rep. Hice’s open 10th CD, trucking company owner and son of the late Congressman Mac Collins, Mike Collins (25.6%), and former DeKalb County Executive Vernon Jones (21.6%), who Mr. Trump supports, move onto the June 21st runoff. The eventual Republican nominee in both contests will win the respective seat in November.
Turning to the Republican battle to challenge veteran Rep. Sanford Bishop (D-Albany) in the 2nd District, Army veteran Jeremy Hunt (36.9%) and attorney Chris West (30.2%) advance to the runoff. In all situations, majority support was needed to win outright a party nomination. For the general election, this will be a competitive contest.
Gov. Brad Little won his Republican re-nomination contest against Lt. Gov. Janice McGeachin with a 53-32% margin on Tuesday night. Former President Donald Trump long ago endorsed Ms. McGeachin, and this represents one of his few losses among those he supports. Gov. Little is now well positioned to easily win a second term in the general election.
Rep. Mike Simpson* (R-Idaho Falls) won a convincing primary battle against three opponents, most specifically Bryan Smith who also challenged him in 2014. Rep. Simpson defeated his principal Republican challenger by 22 percentage points and becomes the prohibitive favorite for re-election in November.
Sen. Rand Paul* (R) won a landslide 86% re-nomination as expected, and former state Rep. Charles Booker took the Democratic nomination, also as predicted. He now advances to oppose Sen. Paul in the general election. The two-term incumbent remains a heavy favorite in November.
As predicted, US Rep. Ted Budd (R-Advance) defeated former North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory to win the US Senate nomination and won 99 of the state’s 100 counties. Former US Rep. Mark Walker and author Marjorie Eastman finished third and fourth. The general election is now set, as Rep. Budd advances to face former state Supreme Court Chief Justice Cheri Beasley, who became a consensus Democratic candidate. The Tar Heel contest will be one of the most important Senate races in the country.
US Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-Hendersonville) lost his re-nomination campaign to state Sen. Chuck Edwards (R-Hendersonville). Rep. Cawthorn made many mistakes in his lone congressional term after winning the seat in 2020 at age 25. He then became the subject of a barrage of negative advertising at the end of the race, and while he raised over $3.6 million, he spent poorly and was left with little to defend himself during the crucial time. In a field of eight candidates, incumbent Cawthorn was only able to capture 32% of the vote, losing to Sen. Edwards’ 33% total. North Carolina is a runoff state, but with only a 30% victory threshold. Therefore, Mr. Edwards wins the party nomination and will be favored in November over the new Democratic nominee, Buncombe County Commissioner Jasmine Beach-Ferrara.
Oregon’s Blue Dog Kurt Schrader* lost re-nomination to former city manager Jamie McLeod-Skinner 60-40%. Ms. McLeod-Skinner will replace Rep. Schrader, a seven-term congressional veteran, as the party’s nominee. Although she lambasted Schrader as a pawn of corporate PACs obstructing the Biden/Pelosi agenda, redistricting was a huge factor: she took 71 percent of the vote in Bend, part of the whopping 53 percent of the 5th CD new to Schrader.
The Pennsylvania Republican Senate election that looks to remain undecided for quite awhile longer. Keystone State election authorities have already ordered election officials in the 67 counties to begin the inevitable recount. Officials know the final unofficial total, which could be released as early as today or tomorrow, will be within the 1/2 percent realm that triggers an automatic recount.
The current totals find Dr. Mehmet Oz leading former hedge fund CEO David McCormick by 902 votes from more than 1.3 million ballots cast. The deadline for military, overseas, and provisional ballot reception was Tuesday. It is being reported that this is the closest primary in Pennsylvania’s modern political era. The election must be certified by June 8th, hence beginning the recount process before an unofficial final count is determined. At that point we will undoubtedly see legal challenges brought forth for individual votes.
Results featured a crushing defeat for the Bush family, as two-term incumbent Attorney General Ken Paxton swamped Land Commissioner George P. Bush, son of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, with a 67.2 - 32.8% margin. Mr. Paxton will now face attorney Rochelle Garza who won the Democratic runoff with 62.9% of the vote.
There are two unresolved congressional races at this writing. In one of the South Texas seats, veteran Rep. Henry Cuellar* (D-Laredo) leads attorney Jessica Cisneros by just 177 votes with 94% of the expected vote recorded. Most of the outstanding vote appears to come in Cuellar favorable counties, so it is more likely that he survives a very close primary and runoff set of elections.
In the contested open 15th District, in what could well become the most hotly contested general election in the Lone Star State, the Democratic runoff is still a long way from being decided. Candidates Michelle Vallejo and Ruben Ramirez are only 23 votes apart with just 50% of the counting reported. This contest could require a long period to decide. The eventual winner will face the 2020 Republican nominee, Monica de la Cruz*, who easily won re-nomination outright back on March 1st.
Moving to the open Dallas anchored 30th District, State Rep. Jasmine Crockett (D-Dallas) recorded a 60.6% runoff win to capture the party nomination in the safely Democratic seat. She will succeed retiring US Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Dallas) in November. Ms. Johnson has represented the area in Congress for the past 30 years.
Former Governor Eric Greitens (R), who was forced to resign from office due to a sex scandal and is now dealing with abuse accusations from his ex-wife, has catapulted back into the lead according to a new Survey USA poll. The study (5/11-15; 1,412 MO likely general election voters; 642 MO likely Republican primary voters; 500 MO likely Democratic primary voters; online) projects Mr. Greitens to a 26-17-11% lead over Attorney General Eric Schmitt and US Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-Harrisonville/Columbia).
The S-USA poll is a significant change from previous polling and is in direct conflict with the latest Remington Research Group survey taken within the same period (5/11-12; 945 MO likely Republican primary voters; interactive voice response system). These ballot test results find AG Schmitt with a 29% lead over Rep. Hartzler’s 23%, while Mr. Greitens trails with 21%. The Missouri primary is August 2nd.
U.S. House of Representatives
Miami City Commissioner Ken Russell (D) released the results of his internal poll that was conducted back in April (4/18-21; 350 FL-27 likely general election voters). The totals show him within two points of freshman Rep. Maria Elvira Salazar* (R-Miami), 43-41%. If the bounced Florida redistricting map is restored in the upper level courts, as many believe will happen, the new 27th plays three points better for Rep. Salazar, though it would still be rated as tipping toward the Democrats by one percentage point
Target Insyght completed a poll of Detroit’s open new 13th District (5/3-5; 600 MI-13 likely Democratic primary voters; live interview) and finds another political contest that is tight among several candidates. Eleven contenders are in the Democratic field, but only three enter double digits. Former Detroit City Councilwoman Sharon McPhail leads the group at 20%, John Conyers III, son of former 52-year congressional veteran John Conyers, is second with 15%, and state Rep. Shri Thanedar (D-Detroit) trails with 12%. The Michigan primary is August 2nd. The seat is open after Rep. Brenda Lawrence (D-Southfield) announced her retirement and Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Detroit) decided to seek re-election in District 12.
Before the early April filing deadline, the Tennessee Republican Party adopted new candidate qualification rules that included past voting history requirements. The new standard requires that all potential GOP office seekers must have voted in the last three statewide elections. Thus, a trio of filed candidates in the new 5th Congressional District were disqualified because they recently moved into the state. The three are former State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus, who former President Donald Trump was supporting, business owner Baxter Lee, and video producer Robby Starbuck.
In April, a Kansas district court disqualified the legislature’s congressional map as a partisan gerrymander. Gov. Laura Kelly (D) originally vetoed the map, but the legislature was able to override her action with 2/3 support in both houses. Now, the Kansas state Supreme Court has overturned the lower court ruling, meaning the original map that puts the state’s 3rd District, in and around Kansas City, into competitive status is back for the 2022 cycle. Two-term Rep. Sharice Davids (D-Roeland Park) currently represents the district. This seat will again become a 2022 Republican conversion target.
Gov. Mike Parson (R) signed the legislation enacting the new Missouri congressional districts last week, meaning that New Hampshire remains the only state that has not completed the re-mapping process. The Missouri map is largely an extension of the current eight-district plan and will likely continue to send six Republicans and two Democrats to Washington. Rep. Ann Wagner*’s (R-Ballwin) 2nd District becomes more Republican, thus stabilizing her seat. Interestingly, the legislature did not change the candidate filing deadline, so no new individuals can enter the congressional races even though the district lines are somewhat different. Missouri candidates originally filed for the 2022 election on March 29th.
The judge presiding over the congressional and state Senate map re-draws made a final ruling on Friday. The special master’s map improves the political situation for Republicans, giving them at least one more seat than the Democratic draw, but putting possibly as many as ten of the 26 seats into potential competition. The map pairs two sets of Democratic incumbents. In New York City, Reps. Jerrold Nadler and Carolyn Maloney are placed in one district. Both said they oppose each other. The new district contains 61% of Ms. Maloney’s district and 39% of Mr. Nadler’s. It is safely Democratic in the general election.
Rep. Mondaire Jones (D-Westchester County) finds himself having to choose a Democratic pairing either against Reps. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-Cold Spring) or Jamaal Bowman (D-Yonkers), or possibly running in an open 18th District that is relatively far from his current CD. If this map is adopted, we will see a much different New York election cycle than what was originally intended.
Minnesota Republicans met in their state nominating endorsement convention and chose, on the sixth ballot, former state Sen. Scott Jensen as their official party candidate. Former Attorney General nominee Doug Wardlow announced that he will enter the August 9th Republican primary, and others may also join the candidate field. The eventual GOP gubernatorial nominee will then challenge Gov. Tim Walz (D). The Governor’s favorability index is an anemic 44:41% positive to negative.
Democratic pollster Public Policy Polling surveyed the Wisconsin Republican gubernatorial primary and produced results not found in other polls. The study (5/9-10; 675 WI likely Republican primary voters) projected construction company executive and 2004 US Senate nominee Tim Michels taking a small lead over former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch. This is the first poll finding anyone but Ms. Kleefisch claiming the top position. The ballot test gave Mr. Michels a 27-26% edge, with businessman Kevin Nicholson trailing well behind in third place with 9% preference. The Milwaukee Works, Inc. organization released the ballot test portion of the PPP survey.
* denotes the candidate has received an AGC PAC contribution during the 2021-2022 election cycle.
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