Last evening’s other special congressional campaign also yielded an unexpected ending. Although former state Rep. Ralph Norman (R) won the vote to succeed Office of Management & Budget Director Mick Mulvaney and hold the Republican seat for the GOP, his 51-49% margin from a small turnout of 87,840 voters was underwhelming.
The Democratic leadership’s decision to concede this race early will now add to their pain from last night. Ironically, spending what will likely be about 3% of Georgia candidate Jon Ossoff’s record total, it was Archie Parnell who became the Democratic candidate coming closest to victory in last night’s special election contests. While the latest Federal Election Commission report, for the period ending May 31st, found Ossoff raising $23.6 million, central South Carolina’s Parnell had only $763,000.
The Norman and Handel victories restore the House Republican Conference to 241 members and the Democrats to 194, the numbers determined after the regular election. Once Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) resigns on June 30th, the next special election, this one in eastern Utah, will end with an August 15th primary and November 7th special general election.
Therefore, the special election season comes to a close with Republicans holding all four of their risked seats: KS-4, MT-AL, GA-6, and SC-5, while the Democrats held serve in CA-34, the district former Rep. Xavier Becerra (D-Los Angeles) left to accept an appointment as California Attorney General. Rep. Chaffetz’s UT-3 seat is also easily expected to remain Republican. In that district, Hillary Clinton didn’t even manage to finish second, coming in behind both President Trump and Independent candidate Evan McMillan.
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