Election News > First Look: Tuesday's Arizona and Florida Primaries

First Look: Tuesday's Arizona and Florida Primaries

August 26, 2018

The final big primary day of 2018 comes at us this week, with Arizona and Florida holding contests this Tuesday. There are also a few runoff elections in Oklahoma. 

Arizona

Polls close at 7:00 PM local time (9:00 Eastern). Where do I vote?

Senate: Sen. John McCain's death has created a vacancy that will be filled by Gov. Doug Ducey. By law, that replacement must be a Republican, although given Ducey's party affiliation that would be expected in any case.  It will be interesting to see what direction he goes. The person selected will serve until a special election is held in 2020. The winner of that will complete the final two years of McCain's term. 

The state's other Senate seat is up in 2018 and will be a fiercely-contested general election race. Sen. Jeff Flake is retiring. On Tuesday, we'll mostly be watching the Republican primary, where Rep. Martha McSally is hoping to fend off former State Sen. Kelli Ward and former Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Ward previously ran for the U.S. Senate in 2016, where she lost the Republican primary to McCain. McSally has opened up a lead in the most recent polls; a win by Ward or Arpaio would increase the likelihood that this seat flips to the Democrats in November. Rep. Kyrsten Sinema is expected to be the Democratic nominee. 

Governor: Gov. Ducey is running for re-election. He is expected to win his primary and will face the winner of a three-way Democratic contest. Ducey will start out the favorite in this race.

House: The state has nine congressional districts. Reps. McSally (AZ-02) and Sinema (AZ-09) are foregoing re-election to run for the U.S. Senate. McSally's seat is a major target for Democrats this fall. Former Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick is favored in a crowded Democratic primary, while Lea Marquez Peterson appears to have an edge for the GOP. Sinema's seat is likely to stay in Democratic hands; former Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton will be the nominee.

Florida

Polls close at 7:00 PM local time (7:00 Eastern except 8:00 PM Eastern for parts of the Panhandle). Where do I vote?

Senate: Gov. Rick Scott faces only nominal competition; he'll meet Sen. Bill Nelson in November. The general election is seen as a toss-up, although Scott has had a small but consistent lead in recent polls. Democrats already have an uphill climb to take control of the Senate, it will be that much harder should they lose the race here.

Governor: The chance to replace termed-out Gov. Rick Scott has created a very crowded primary field in both parties. For the GOP, Rep. Ron DeSantis and Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam are the leading candidates. DeSantis' position in the race was significantly strengthened after an endorsement by President Trump in June. On the Democratic side, there seem to be several candidates with a shot at the nomination, including former Rep. Gwen Graham as well as the Mayor of Tallahassee and former Mayor of Miami Beach. The general election is a toss-up.

House: The state has 27 congressional districts. The GOP-held 26th and 27th districts in the very southern part of the state present good pick-up opportunities for Democrats.  Both those districts were among 23 (before PA redistricting) that elected a Republican to Congress while voting for Hillary Clinton in 2016. In fact, these two gave Clinton her largest margin of all such districts. The 27th is particularly vulnerable, where 15-term incumbent Ileana Ros-Lehtinen is retiring. One of the candidates running for the GOP nomination to replace her was abducted by aliens.

Oklahoma

Polls close at 7:00 PM local time (8:00 Eastern). Where do I vote?

The state will hold runoffs Tuesday for races where no candidate received a majority of the vote in the June 26th primary. This includes the GOP primary for governor and several congressional districts.

Primary Calendar

After Tuesday, there are only a few East Coast states that remain on the 2018 primary calendar

September 4:  Massachusetts

September 6:  Delaware

September 11: New Hampshire

September 12: Rhode Island








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