Eight states will host their 2020 primary elections in March, meaning they will feature a full ballot to compliment the presidential race. Voters will select a full slate of nominees in Alabama, Arkansas, California, Illinois, Mississippi, North Carolina, Ohio, and Texas on March 3, 10, or 17th. This means, at the end of March, nominees could be fully chosen for six Senate races and 151 congressional districts. It is possible, should no candidate reach the minimum nomination percentage in various states featuring a qualifying figure, that run-offs could be held in some Alabama, Mississippi, North Carolina, and Texas contests.
All of the aforementioned states have completed their candidate filing deadlines with the exception of Mississippi. There, candidacies become official on January 10th. West Virginia and Kentucky candidates will file on January 25th and 28th, respectively for May 12th and May 19th primary elections.
The US Census Bureau officers released their latest population projections in order to measure national population growth for the period between July 1, 2018 and July 1, 2019. The results find the national rate of growth slowing to 0.5%, mostly as a result of decreased immigration. The peak period for the decade came during the July 1, 2014 – July 1, 2015 period when the growth rate registered 0.73%.
With these numbers come the ability to project which states will gain and lose congressional seats in 2020 reapportionment. The national reapportionment will be calculated and announced after the 2020 census is completed. The states will receive their congressional seat quota a year from now, with a release typically coming during the period between Christmas and New Year’s.
If current projections prove correct, Texas looks to gain three seats, Florida two, with Arizona, Colorado, Montana, North Carolina, and Oregon each slated to gain one. The losing states look to be Alabama, California, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and West Virginia.
If these projections prove true, California will lose a seat for the first time in history. It’s also realistic that the actual totals could yield a two-seat loss for Illinois or New York, and possibly both. Right now, it appears ten congressional seats will change states, but that number could grow. Usually, the actual numbers tend to differ slightly from the early published projections.
Yesterday, we reported that former Attorney General and ex-Alabama US Senator Jeff Sessions (R) just released data from his internal OnMessage survey (12/3-5; 700 AL likely Republican primary voters; live interview) that placed him ahead of former Auburn University head football coach Tommy Tuberville by a 44-21% margin. Now, we see a Cherry Communications survey released (12/1-3; 600 AL likely Republican primary voters) that, while also finding Sessions and Tuberville advancing to an April 14th run-off from the March 3rd primary, projects a tight spread between the two contenders. Cherry finds Sessions’ advantage to only be 35-31%.
Both polls place the other candidates, US Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-Mobile), former state Supreme Court Chief Judge Roy Moore, and state Rep. Arnold Mooney (R-Shelby County), to be significantly trailing.
Former Attorney General and ex-Alabama US Senator Jeff Sessions (R) just released data from his internal OnMessage survey (12/3-5; 700 AL likely Republican primary voters; live interview). The ballot test results find Mr. Sessions placing first with 44% followed by former Auburn University head football coach Tommy Tuberville who records 21% support. Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-Mobile) has 14%, with former state Supreme Court Chief Judge and 2017 US Senate nominee Roy Moore attracting only 7%. State Rep. Arnold Mooney (R-Shelby County) gets just 1% in this survey.
If no candidate receives majority support in the March 3rd primary, the top two will advance to an April 14th run-off election. Most all recent polling has found that a Sessions/Tuberville run-off is the most likely primary outcome.
Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill announced yesterday that he is ending his campaign for the Republican Senatorial nomination, saying that former Sen. Jeff Sessions being back in the race added obstacles that he could not overcome. In addition to Sen. Sessions, US Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-Mobile), former Auburn University head football coach Tommy Tuberville, former state Supreme Court Chief Judge and 2017 Senate nominee Roy Moore, and state Rep. Arnold Mooney (R-Shelby County) remain in the race.
The Club for Growth, again using the WPA Intelligence survey research firm, just polled Alabama’s open 1st Congressional District Republican primary and finds that their July numbers suggesting a run-off election have barely changed. The new poll (11/19-21; 413 AL-1 likely Republican primary voters) sees former state Sen. Bill Hightower leading the group with 35% preference, while state Rep. Chris Pringle (R-Mobile) and Mobile County Commissioner Jerry Carl both follow with 16 and 13 percent.
Back in July, WPAi reported that Mr. Hightower held an almost identical 34-16-12% margin against Messrs. Pringle and Carl. With 50% necessary to claim the party nomination, it appears this race is head to an April 14th run-off election to determine the Republican nominee. The eventual primary victor will become the prohibitive favorite for the general election. Current incumbent Bradley Byrne (R-Mobile) is running for the Senate.
The most interesting development surrounding Friday’s Alabama candidate filing deadline was former Senator and US Attorney General Jeff Sessions filing to run for the seat he resigned to accept his appointment in the Trump Administration. The first poll released after his formal announcement was taken well before Mr. Sessions’ declaration but included him in the field of candidates since it appeared he was making preliminary moves to enter.
WPA Intelligence, polling for the Club for Growth political organization (10/29-31; 511 AL likely Republican primary voters), finds Mr. Sessions leading the group of candidates with 36%, followed by former Auburn University head football coach Tommy Tuberville, who posts 23%. US Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-Mobile) and ex-Alabama state Supreme Court Chief Judge and 2017 special election US Senate nominee Roy Moore are next, both drawing 11% preference. Secretary of State John Merrill pulls only 6% support. The results suggest a highly competitive primary with Mr. Sessions in good position to qualify for a run-off position.
The Alabama 2020 candidate filing deadline names the slate of contenders for the state’s seven US House districts.
In the open seats, District 1 and 2, we see five Republican candidates and three Democrats filing in the former, but the GOP nomination battle will almost assuredly produce the successor to Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-Mobile) who is leaving the House to run for the Senate. The five Republican candidates include three major contenders, former state Sen. Bill Hightower, state Rep. Curt Pringle (R-Mobile), and Mobile County Commissioner Jerry Carl.
In retiring Rep. Martha Roby’s (R-Montgomery) 2nd District, six Republicans and two Democrats filed. Here, too, the Republican primary is virtually the election. On paper, the favorite should be former state Attorney General Troy King. Ex-state Rep. Barry Moore is returning to run again, but he did not fare well in his 2018 Republican primary challenge to Rep. Roby (19% in a field of five candidates).
Reps. Mike Rogers (R-Anniston) and Robert Aderholt (R-Haleyville) drew minor Democratic opposition in their respective districts. Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville) faces only a Republican primary opponent. Reps. Gary Palmer (R-Hoover) and Terri Sewell (D-Birmingham) both face no major party opposition.
It appears we may not have heard the end of Michael Bloomberg’s 2020 presidential effort. On the last day of candidate filing in Alabama, Mr. Bloomberg placed his name into contention for the state’s March 3rd Super Tuesday presidential primary. This does not necessarily mean that Mr. Bloomberg will actually become a national candidate, but he has certainly taken the first step toward doing so. In filing, the former New York City Mayor and media mogul said he does not feel the current Democratic field is well enough positioned to defeat President Trump.
Reports are emanating from Alabama that former Senator and US Attorney General Jeff Sessions (R) is going to announce his candidacy for his former seat later today. The candidate filing deadline is tomorrow, so Mr. Sessions and all other prospective candidates are now forced to make their final decision about entering the race. The Alabama primary is concurrent with Super Tuesday, March 3rd.
Mr. Sessions entering this Senate contest, arguably the most important in the cycle because a Republican victory here over Democratic Sen. Doug Jones might give the party enough to maintain its majority even if other states are lost, makes it all the more interesting.
His public feud with President Trump aside, Mr. Sessions will also have a formidable GOP field to overcome for the party nomination that includes Secretary of State John Merrill, Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-Mobile), Auburn former head football coach Tommy Tuberville, and of course former state Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore. Alabama’s senior Senator, Richard Shelby (R), has already said he will endorse Mr. Sessions should he become a candidate.
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