Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R) has been under a federal indictment cloud since 2015 and is now besieged with new accusations of him having an extra-marital affair and ex-aides claiming he accepted bribes. Unsurprisingly, these charges and attacks have already drawn Mr. Paxton serious Republican primary opposition, and now another has come to the forefront.
Stepping down from the Texas State Supreme Court to oppose Mr. Paxton in the Republican primary is Justice Eva Guzman, who began her service on the high court in late 2009. She not only joins the incumbent in the race, but also Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush, son of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, and nephew to former Texas Governor and US President George W. Bush.
The redistricting delays will undoubtedly postpone the Texas primary from its traditional early March date, so even the coming election schedule is an unknown factor in what promises to be a wild campaign.
Show Me State US Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-St. Elizabeth/outer St. Louis suburbs) announced yesterday that he will not enter the open 2022 US Senate race, choosing to remain in the House where he is an apparent contender to chair the House Financial Services Committee if the Republicans regain the majority in the 2022 elections.
GOP Reps. Ann Wagner (R-Ballwin), Billy Long (R-Springfield), and Jason Smith (R-Salem/ Bootheel Region) are still considered possible entrants. Six-term Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-Harrisonville/Columbia) announced her Senate candidacy last week. Former Gov. Eric Greitens and Attorney General Eric Schmitt remain official candidates for the party nomination. Former St. Louis area state Sen. Scott Sifton appears to be the leading Democratic candidate at this early point in the election cycle.
Three media entities, WNBC television in New York, Telemundo 47, and Politico joined to sponsor a Marist College poll of the New York City open Democratic mayoral primary scheduled for next Tuesday, June 22nd. The pollsters (6/3-9; 876 NYC likely Democratic primary voters; live interview) carried the ranked choice voting system to its extreme, which is a complicated undertaking, and again found Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams eventually leading the group of 13 Democratic candidates vying to succeed term-limited Mayor Bill de Blasio (D).
It appears that four contenders, Mr. Adams, former presidential candidate Andrew Yang, civil rights lawyer Maya Wiley who has drawn support from Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-Bronx) and the far left, and former NYC Sanitation Commissioner Kathryn Garcia form the top tier. Carried through 12 mock rounds of ranked choice voting, Mr. Adams appears to prevail over Ms. Garcia, 56-44%. The eventual Democratic nominee is a virtual cinch to win the November general election.
State Rep. William Bailey (R-Myrtle Beach) who was the first Republican primary challenger to US Rep. Tom Rice (R-Myrtle Beach) after the Congressman supported the second effort to impeach then-President Trump is now the first to drop out of the race. He announced yesterday that he is exiting the congressional contest but will seek re-election to the state House. He says there are plenty of other conservatives in the race that will prove strong opposition to Mr. Rice.
A total of 11 announced Republicans remain in the primary contest. The top two appear to be Horry County School Board chairman Ken Richardson and former Myrtle Beach Mayor Mark McBride. South Carolina features a runoff system, so Rep. Rice will have to obtain majority support among all dozen candidates to avoid a secondary election.
State Rep. RasTafari Smith (D-Waterloo) announced yesterday that he will enter the Democratic primary for purposes of challenging Iowa Republican Governor Kim Reynolds next year. She will be on the ballot for a second full term in 2022 after winning election in her own right three years ago. She served the balance of former Gov. Terry Branstad’s (R) previous term. As Lt. Governor, she ascended to the office when Mr. Branstad became US Ambassador to China in the Trump Administration.
Gov. Reynolds is favored for re-election, but the Iowa electorate always delivers competitive statewide campaign contests.
On the heels of Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-Harrisonville/Columbia) announcing her run for the Senate, the Remington Research Group released a new Missouri Senate Republican primary poll (6/9-10; 1,011 MO likely Republican primary voters; interactive voice response system), the first such study testing the three major GOP candidates. The results find former Gov. Eric Greitens still leading the group, this time with 34%, followed by Attorney General Eric Schmitt with 25%, and Rep. Hartzler trailing with 14% support. Incumbent Sen. Roy Blunt (R) announced in March that he will not seek a third term.
According to a new Meeting Street Insights survey for the Ted Budd for Senate campaign (6/9-10; 500 NC likely Republican primary voters; live interview), former Gov. Pat McCrory’s (R) early lead dissipates once voters become aware that ex-President Trump has endorsed Rep. Budd for the open Senate race to replace outgoing incumbent Richard Burr (R).
The poll’s initial ballot test finds Mr. McCrory leading the pack of candidates with 45%, followed by US Rep. Ted Budd (R-Advance) at 19%, and former Rep. Mark Walker (R) trailing with 12 percent support. Only 20% of the respondents indicated that they are aware of Mr. Trump’s endorsement of Rep. Budd. Once fully educated, the respondent sample flips to the point that Mr. Budd has a 46-27-8% advantage over Mr. McCrory and former Rep. Walker.
The Listener Group just released a Florida Democratic gubernatorial poll (6/9-11; 660 FL likely Democratic primary voters; live interview) that sees US Rep. Charlie Crist’s (D-St. Petersburg) lead over state Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried (D) diminishing. In late May, St. Pete Polls (5/24-26; 2,572 FL registered voters; online) found the Tampa Bay area Congressman and former Governor leading Ms. Fried, 56-22%. The Listener numbers find the spread to be only 41-31%, suggesting this race could be much more competitive than first thought.
Late last week, the Glenn Youngkin for Governor campaign released a WPA Intelligence survey that found the Republican nominee pulling to within just two percentage points, 46-48%, of former Governor Terry McAuliffe (D). Yesterday, in the first post-Democratic primary poll, the JMC Analytics firm basically confirmed those results. According to their latest Virginia poll (6/9-12; 550 VA likely 2021 general election voters; live interview) Mr. McAuliffe leads Mr. Youngkin by a similarly small 46-42% margin.
The poll appears to be weighted properly in terms of partisan breakdown in the state though the 2020 presidential vote is a couple of points light for President Biden. The polling sample has more white voters than the general Virginia population, but also more women.
Additionally, the survey tested the other two statewide races, Lt. Governor and Attorney General, and here the Democrats fare better. State Delegate Hala Ayala (D-Woodbridge) has a 42-36% lead over former Delegate Winsome Sears (R), and Attorney General Mark Herring (D) is staked to a 45-38% edge over state Delegate Jason Miyares (R-Virginia Beach).
Former Cleveland City Councilman, Mayor, City Councilman again, state Senator, US Congressman, and presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich (D) formally announced his new Mayoral campaign yesterday. In doing so, Mr. Kucinich is running for an office that he first held 44 years ago and would then lose 48 months later to Republican George Voinovich, who would later become Governor and US Senator.
Mr. Kucinich’s colorful political career finds most of his years in elective office were spent in the US House of Representatives, where he served eight terms from 1997 until 2013. He is again viewed as an underdog in this year’s campaign.
The Rundown Blog
Learn more about the candidates running in key elections across the United States.