On passage of the new Tennessee congressional redistricting map that would significantly change the Nashville area, veteran Rep. Jim Cooper (D-Nashville) quickly announced that he will not seek re-election later this year.
The redistricting plan now goes to Gov. Bill Lee (R), and he is expected to sign the legislation.
Mr. Cooper is serving his 16th term in the House, winning his first election from the state’s east/southeastern 4th District in 1982, which he represented until he ran unsuccessfully for the US Senate in 1994. He returned to the House from the Nashville district in 2002 when then-Rep. Bob Clement (D-Nashville) left the seat to challenge then-Sen. Fred Thompson (R), the same man who defeated Mr. Cooper in his statewide bid.
During his second tour of duty in the House, Rep. Cooper was not seriously challenged for re-election. It appeared he was preparing for a Democratic primary challenge this year, but such is moot now that the new 5th District becomes decidedly Republican. Rep. Cooper is the 29th Democrat not to seek re-election. Counting the Democratic and Republican retirements along with the new and created (through redistricting) open seats, the House will see a minimum of 50 new members coming into office at the beginning of 2023.
Former US Rep. Mike Sodrel (R-IN), who served one term in the House from 2005-2007, announced that he will enter the open seat race later this year. Mr. Sodrel has previously run five times for the 9th District position, winning one time and losing four other elections. He last ran in 2010 when he lost the Republican primary to then-Attorney Todd Young. Mr. Young would go onto defeat then-Rep. Baron Hill (D), and is now Indiana’s senior US Senator.
Incumbent Rep. Trey Hollingsworth (R-Jeffersonville) announced two weeks ago that he would not seek a fourth term. In the open seat GOP race in addition to Mr. Sodrel are state Sen. Erin Houchin (R-Salem) and businessman Stu Barnes-Israel. The 9th District is rated a R+30 by the FiveThirtyEight statistical site.
In a surprising move from an Alabama three-judge Republican panel, the enacted GOP congressional map was declared void yesterday because it did not create a second African American district as the Democratic plaintiffs claimed it could. Immediately the Republican legislative leadership announced they will appeal the decision.
Upon filing their objection, the map would then go directly to the US Supreme Court, and the high panel must hear the redistricting challenges. As part of the ruling, the Alabama candidate filing deadline was moved from January 28th to February 11th. The court returned the map to the legislature ordering a new map by February 7th. If the GOP legislators follow through with their Supreme Court appeal, it is likely they will not respond to the court order.
The Kansas House of Representatives passed the state Senate’s version of the new four-district congressional map and sent the plan to Gov. Laura Kelly (D) for her signature. The map weakens considerably Democratic Rep. Sharice Davids’ (D-Roeland Park) 3rd District. Her seat moves from a Biden victory margin of 54-44% to 51-47% and splits the Kansas City metro area.
It is unclear as to whether Gov. Kelly will veto the map, but if she does the legislature has enough Republican members to override her action. Rep. Davids would still be favored for re-election, but the district would become much more competitive.
Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones (R), who challenged Rep. Ami Bera (D-Sacramento) in 2016 and lost in a 51-49% margin, announced that he will run in the new open 3rd District that stretches from the Sacramento suburbs all the way down the Nevada border into Southern California via Inyo County. Sheriff Jones will at a minimum face state Assemblyman Kevin Kiley (R-Granite Bay), businessman Jim Scott (R), and physician Kermit Jones (D) in the June 7th jungle primary. The seat leans Republican, and carries a R+8 rating from the FiveThirtyEight statistical firm.
State Sen. Adam Hollier (D-Detroit) announced he will run for the open 13th District in which the Democratic primary will decide who will represent the district. Already, in the Democratic race are state Rep. Shri Thaneder (D-Detroit), Detroit School Board Member and ex-state Rep. Sherry Gay-Dagnogo, and attorney Michael Griffie. Former US Rep. Hansen Clarke (D) is a potential candidate. The Michigan primary is August 2nd.
Gov. Tate Reeves (R), as expected, signed the legislation to enact the new Mississippi congressional redistricting plan. The newly adopted map should retain the 3R-1D ratio in the four-district state for the remainder of the decade. Mississippi becomes the 28th state to complete the redistricting task.
The Victory Research firm tested Illinois Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker (1/18-20; 1,208 IL likely general election voters) against five potential Republican opponents. Businessman Gary Rabine (R) fares best against the Governor, but even he trails by a huge 52-28% margin. Gov. Pritzker remains in strong shape in his bid for a second term. Other tested GOP candidates are state Sen. Darren Bailey (R-Louisville), Aurora Mayor Richard Irvin, former state Sen. Paul Schimpf, and venture capitalist Jesse Sullivan.
Regular Michigan pollster EPIC-MRA (1/15-20; 600 MI likely general election voters; live interview) finds Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) leading former Detroit Police Chief James Craig (R) with a 46-41% margin according to the results of its latest survey.
Though Gov. Whitmer has an edge on the outside of the polling margin of error, there are several negative points that should worry her. In a ratio of 35:45%, the respondents believe Michigan is on the wrong track. Her job approval stands at 45:52% positive to negative. Perhaps the worst part of the survey for Gov. Whitmer, however, is that President Biden’s job approval is a woeful 32:66% positive to negative, and the respondents rate the economy only 29:65% positive to negative.
Former Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley (D) released the results of her internal campaign poll from Clarity Campaign Labs (1/17-19; 670 OH likely Democratic primary voters; interactive voice response system & online) that posts her to a lead over ex-Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley in their May 3rd Democratic primary battle. According to the Clarity survey, Ms. Whaley’s advantage is 33-20%. Barring a huge GOP primary upset, the Democratic nominee will face Gov. Mike DeWine (R) as he seeks a second term in office.
The Rundown Blog
Learn more about the candidates running in key elections across the United States.