Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville), who Mr. Trump rescinded his endorsement because, at the time, it was viewed his campaign was going nowhere, rebounded to capture second position (29.2%) in the open US Senate Republican primary 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.
The Minnesota special congressional primary to begin the replacement process for the late Rep. Jim Hagedorn (R-Blue Earth/Rochester) is also undecided. The Republican side now features a two-way battle between former state Rep. Brad Finstad (38.0%) and state Rep. Jeremy Munson (R-Crystal Lake) (36.8%) with 88% reporting. The Finstad lead is 427 votes, which may or may not stand up as the final counting process proceeds.
On the Democratic side, former Hormel company CEO Jeff Ettinger won the party nomination with 64.3% of the vote over seven opponents. The eventual nominees will square off in a special general election on August 9th, a date concurrent with Minnesota’s regular primary election. Republican turnout so far surpasses the Democratic participation rate by almost a 2:1 margin, 35,330 to 18,392.
The Texas 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.
US Rep. Antonio Delgado (D-Rhinebeck) will officially be sworn in as the state’s new Lt. Governor later today. Resigning the congressional seat just before taking the oath of office allows Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) to schedule the special election to replace Mr. Delgado concurrently with the August 23rd congressional primary. The political parties will choose their respective nominees, meaning there will be only one election to fill the balance of the Congressman’s current term. The new member then could seek a full term in the new 19th CD, which will be different in configuration to the current pre-redistricting seat.
Media reports surfacing from Michigan are indicating that several Republican candidates, including polling front runner James Craig, the former Detroit Police Chief, may fall short of presenting 15,000 valid registered voter petition signatures to qualify him for a ballot position. According to the Michigan Bureau of Elections, 9,879 of Craig’s signatures were invalid for various reasons, leaving him well short of the 15,000 minimum number.
Another gubernatorial candidate, businessman Perry Johnson (R), is in similar position. The Michigan Governor’s race is one of he premier statewide campaigns in the country this year, so Mr. Craig potentially not being a candidate is a major developing story.
A three judge federal panel sitting in Harrisburg issued a ruling Friday on a Lehigh Valley case that relates to the current vote counting situation. The judicial action mandated the counting of mail ballots where no date appears on the carrier envelope. PA ballot procedure requires the voter to date the envelope before mailing. Immediately upon the ruling being announced, the Dave McCormick for Senate campaign sent a letter to all 67 county chief election officials reiterating the decision. The Mehmet Oz-Dave McCormick race is down to a lead of 1,070 votes for the former me, suggesting that any new ballots added to the mix could theoretically help Mr. McCormick. It is unclear when we will see a final count publicized.
Oregon’s 5th District ballot counting has ground to a halt because of a major malfunction in one of the district’s anchor areas, Clackamas County. Due to a reported bar code error on the printed ballots, election officials are having to record the votes of every ballot individually, punching a new ballot for each with the correct bar code. Hence, only 57% of the expected vote has been reported.
Rep. Kurt Schrader (D-Canby) is trailing badly, 60-40% in the Democratic primary, to former local city manager Jamie McLeod-Skinner. The Congressman’s base is Clackamas County, but it appears, according to votes currently recorded there, that he won’t likely have enough support there to fully overcome his opponent’s large early advantage. If Mr. Schrader does lose, he will be the third House incumbent who fails to secure re-nomination joining Reps. David McKinley (R-WV) and Madison Cawthorn (R-NC).
One of the other Pennsylvania races that was too close to originally call was the open 12th District Democratic primary. Though she has not yet been officially projected the winner, state Rep. Summer Lee (D-Braddock) has increased her small lead to 737 votes of more than 94,000 ballots cast. Her main opponent is lobbyist Steve Irwin, and Ms. Lee’s lead may now be too wide for him to overcome. The eventual Democratic nominee becomes the prohibitive favorite in the general election and will replace retiring Rep. Mike Doyle (D-Pittsburgh) from the downtown Pittsburgh anchored district.
The Rundown Blog
Learn more about the candidates running in key elections across the United States.