Election News

Special Primary Overview and Live Results: Ohio Congressional Districts 11 and 15

August 3, 2021

Headlining Tuesday's election calendar are special party primaries in two Ohio congressional districts. Details below. There are also party primaries for two vacant State Senate seats in Michigan and nonpartisan mayoral primaries in both Detroit and Seattle.

Michigan State Senate Special Primaries>> Detroit and Seattle Mayoral Primaries >>

 

Ohio Congressional District Special Primaries

Both these vacant seats are expected to remain with the incumbent party in the November 2 special general election. As a result, most of the drama in these races is is around picking a Democratic nominee in District 11 and a Republican nominee in District 15.   

Polls close at 7:30 PM Eastern Time. 

District 11

This Cleveland-Akron area district (nicely gerrymandered, as are many in the state) has been vacant since March 10, when Democratic Rep. Marcia Fudge joined the Biden administration after being confirmed as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. Fudge was in her 8th term, and most recently reelected by an 80%-20% margin. Joe Biden defeated Donald Trump by a similar amount.

13 Democrats are seeking the nomination, but this election is all about a battle between two of them - and their respective wings of the party.  It may be the most expensive House race this year

Wall Street Journal: "A House special election primary in Cleveland on Tuesday is shaping up as a proxy war over the direction of the Democratic Party, with the top two candidates drawing millions in donations as prominent figures including Sen. Bernie Sanders and Rep. James Clyburn line up on opposing sides."

NBC News: "You have to go back to Obama vs. Clinton in 2008 to think of a nastier Democratic primary than what’s playing out in Tuesday’s special primary election..."

Former State Sen. Nina Turner, a national co-chair for Bernie Sanders in his 2020 presidential campaign, supports large-scale progressive priorities like Medicare for All and the Green New Deal.  Cuyahoga County Councilwoman Shontel Brown is running as the establishment/centrist candidate. She has the support of Hillary Clinton and the Congressional Black Caucus.

Turner was well ahead in polling earlier this spring. Recent surveys have shown a more competitive race

There are two candidates on the Republican ballot. Laverne Gore was the party's nominee in 2020.

District 15

This district includes a portion of Columbus, but is largely south and southeast of the city. It has been vacant since May 16, when Republican Rep. Steve Stivers resigned to head the Ohio Chamber of Commerce. Stivers won a 6th term with a 27% margin this past November, running well ahead of Donald Trump's 14% margin here. 

There are 11 Republicans on the ballot looking to succeed Stivers. Much of the focus here will be on Trump's endorsement of former coal lobbyist Mike Carey. On the heels of last week's failed endorsement in TX-6, the former president's PAC has made a significant last-minute investment in this race. 

Unlike the TX-6 race, only Republicans will be casting votes Tuesday. That should work to Trump's advantage. On the other hand, this is a large field with several more politically prominent candidates. Another complicating factor (in terms of making predictions) is that turnout is likely to be low for a special election primary in the middle of summer. 

State Sen. Bob Peterson has been in office for nearly a decade and has a strong conservative voting record. He narrowly trailed Carey in reported fundraising. He is endorsed by the president of the Ohio Senate. State Rep. Jeff LaRe is backed by Stivers, the previous incumbent. Sen. Rand Paul is backing former State Rep. Ron Hood.  

Those aren't the only candidates with support. Ruth Edmonds is backed by conservative activist Debbie Meadows, wife of former Trump chief of staff, Mark Meadows. State Sen. Stephanie Kunze has been endorsed by the Franklin County Republican Party. 

Two Democrats are on the ballot. The more prominent is State Rep. Allison Russo. She has been endorsed by Sen. Sherrod Brown.

Overview and Live Results: Nonpartisan Mayoral Primaries in Seattle and Detroit

August 3, 2021

Headlining Tuesday's election calendar are special party primaries in two Ohio congressional districts. There are also party primaries for two vacant State Senate seats in Michigan and nonpartisan mayoral primaries in both Detroit and Seattle.

Ohio Cong. District 11 and 15 Primaries>> Michigan State Senate Special Primaries >>

 

Mayoral Primary Elections

On Tuesday, Seattle and Detroit will hold nonpartisan primaries for mayor. The top two finishers in each will advance to the November 2 general election.

City rankings are based on July 1, 2020 Census Bureau population estimates. They are for the city itself, not the associated metropolitan area.

Seattle, Washington

Seattle is the 18th largest city in the United States, with a population of about 770,000. The current mayor is Democrat Jenny Durkan, who is completing her first term after being elected in 2017. She is not seeking reelection. 

There are 15 candidates on the ballot. The six most prominent are: Colleen Echohawk, Jessyn Farrell, Lorena Gonzalez, Bruce Harrell, Andrew Grant Houston and Casey Sixkiller. All appear to be Democrats. 

In a mid-July poll, Bruce Harrell, the former City Council president, led the field with 20%.  Lorena Gonzalez, who succeeded Harrell, was second with 12%.  Colleen Echohawk was narrowly behind at 10%.  The other three notables were between 4% and 6%.  Harrell would seem to be in decent shape for one of the top two positions. However, with 32% still undecided, it is not a sure thing.

Polls close at 11:00 PM Eastern Time.

Detroit, Michigan

Detroit is the 24th largest city in the United States, with a population of about 665,000. The current mayor is Democrat Mike Duggan. He is seeking a 3rd four-year term. In 2017, Duggan was reelected with about 72% of the vote. 

Duggan is expected to advance and looks to be a heavy favorite to win a third term in November. His most well-known opponent in the ten-person field is former Deputy Mayor Anthony Adams.

Polls close at 8:00 PM Eastern Time.

Overview and Live Results: Michigan State Senate Special Primaries

August 3, 2021

Headlining Tuesday's election calendar are special party primaries in two Ohio congressional districts. There are also party primaries for two vacant State Senate seats in Michigan and nonpartisan mayoral primaries in both Detroit and Seattle.

Ohio Cong. District 11 and 15 Primaries>> Detroit and Seattle Mayoral Primaries >>

 

Michigan State Senate Special Primary Elections

There are 38 State Senate districts in Michigan. Currently, there are 20 Republicans and 16 Democrats. Tuesday's primaries are to select nominees who will meet in the November 2 general election to fill the two open seats.

Polls close at 8:00 Eastern Time. 

District 8

The District 8 vacancy was created by the resignation of Republican Peter Lucido effective at the end of last year; he had been elected Macomb County prosecutor in November. Lucido was in his first term, having been elected by a 62%-38% margin in 2018. 

There are 7 Republicans and 2 Democrats vying for their respective party's nomination.

District 28

The District 28 vacancy was created by the resignation of Republican Peter MacGregor effective at the end of last year; he had been elected Kent County Treasurer the prior month.. MacGregor was first elected in 2014 and reelected in 2018 with 58% of the vote.

There are 3 Republicans - all current or former state representatives - on the primary ballot. Two Democrats are competing for their party's nomination.

Jake Ellzey Sworn-in After TX-6 Win; House Now 220 Democrats, 212 Republicans

July 30, 2021

Republican Jake Ellzey was sworn into office Friday as the representative for Texas' 6th congressional district.  Ellzey won the seat in a special election held earlier in the week.

Democrats now hold a 220-212 margin the House. Three vacancies remain. 

Other House Vacancies

Special Election District 2020  Information
November 2 OH-11 D+60% Marcia Fudge (D) resigned in March to become Secretary of HUD. Primaries will be held August 3.
November 2 OH-15 R+27% Steve Stivers (R) resigned May 16 to become CEO of Ohio Chamber of Commerce. Primaries will be held August 3.
Jan. 11, 2022 FL-20 D+57% Alcee Hastings (D) died in April. Primaries will be held November 2.

The two Ohio vacancies will have competitive primaries on Tuesday. Candidates Nina Turner and Shontel Brown, representing the progressive and more moderate wings of the Democratic party, are battling for the nomination in the Cleveland-area 11th District. Meanwhile, the Republican primary in the Columbus-area 15th district will test the strength of a Trump endorsement at odds with that of the former incumbent.

Overview and Live Results: Texas 6th Congressional District Special Election

July 27, 2021

Despite being more competitive than the three other vacant House districts, we know for sure that a Republican will win Tuesday's special election in Texas' 6th congressional district. The seat has been open since Republican Rep. Ron Wright died in February.

No candidate received a majority of the vote in the May 1 all-party primary, necessitating Tuesday's runoff.  This wasn't a surprise in a huge field of 23 candidates. What was a bit unexpected was that Republicans secured both slots on the ballot. 

Susan Wright, widow of Ron Wright, led the primary field with about 19% of the vote. State Rep. Jake Ellzey took the second spot, with just under 14%. Ellzey narrowly edged out Democrat Jana Sanchez, setting up Tuesday's intraparty election.

There has been no public polling and turnout is expected to be low. While we know a Republican will continue to represent this suburban Dallas district, it is very much up in the air which one it will be.

Polls close at 8:00 PM Eastern Time. 

 

Endorsements and Fundraising

Donald Trump has repeatedly backed Wright, including a statement released on the eve of the election. As a result, Tuesday's outcome will undoubtedly be seen as another data point on the former president's ongoing level of control over the GOP. On the other hand, Trump's involvement might help Ellzey with Democratic and independent voters.

Daniel was the 6th district Democratic nominee in 2020; he lost to Ron Wright by about 9%.

Susan Wright has also been endorsed by Sen. Ted Cruz, several members of the Texas congressional delegation, and the third-ranking House Republican, Rep. Elise Stefanik (NY-21). 

Ellzey has the support of former Gov. Rick Perry, Rep. Dan Crenshaw and former TX-6 Rep. Joe Barton. He also has been endorsed by the two major local newspapers: The Dallas Morning News and Fort Worth Star-Telegram.  Ellzey has also notably outraised Wright. In the latest FEC filing period, Ellzey raised $1.2 million to $450,000 for Wright.

Other House Vacancies

There are currently 220 Democrats and 211 Republicans in the House. In addition to TX-6, there are three other vacancies: 

Date District 2020  Information
November 2 OH-11 D+60% Marcia Fudge (D) resigned in March to become Secretary of HUD. Primaries will be held August 3.
November 2 OH-15 R+27% Steve Stivers (R) to resign May 16 to become CEO of Ohio Chamber of Commerce. Primaries will be held August 3.
Jan. 11, 2022 FL-20 D+57% Alcee Hastings (D) died in April. Primaries will be held November 2.

The two Ohio vacancies will have party primaries this upcoming Tuesday. Candidates Nina Turner and Shontel Brown, representing the progressive and more moderate wings of the Democratic party, are battling for the nomination in the Cleveland-area 11th District. Meanwhile, the Republican primary in the Columbus-area 15th district will test the strength of a Trump endorsement at odds with that of the former incumbent. The winners in these two primaries will be heavy favorites in the general election.

 

Former Iowa Rep. Abby Finkenauer to Run for Senate in 2022

July 22, 2021

Former U.S. Rep Abby Finkenauer of Iowa announced Thursday she would seek the Democratic nomination for U.S. Senate next year.

The current incumbent is Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley. He first won election in 1980 and is currently the second most senior member of the U.S. Senate, behind only Vermont's Patrick Leahy (D). Grassley, who will be 88 in September, has not yet announced whether he will seek an 8th term in 2022.

Most analysts see the race as safely Republican given Grassley's long tenure and the increasingly red lean of the state. However, that could change should Grassley retire and Democrats field a strong nominee. Iowa is one of 34 U.S. Senate seats up for election in 2022.

Finkenauer served one term representing Iowa's first congressional district. She defeated incumbent Republican Rod Blum by about 5% in 2018. Her 2020 reelection bid fell short, losing to Republican Ashley Hinson by 2.5%.

Cook Political Updates 2022 Senate Forecast

July 16, 2021

The Cook Political Report has updated its 2022 Senate outlook, with four races seen as more competitive than earlier in the year.

The full forecaster analysis can be found here (subscription required).

Florida: Likely to Lean Republican. Reflects the entry of a high profile Democrat, Rep. Val Demings and her strong fundraising numbers, which have kept pace with those of incumbent Republican Sen. Marco Rubio.

Nevada and New Hampshire: Likely to Lean Democratic. In both cases, the ultimate competitiveness of the race will likely depend on whether a strong Republican declares their candidacy. In Nevada, waiting on former Attorney General Adam Laxalt; in New Hampshire it is Gov. Chris Sununu. Cook notes that if Sununu does get in, the Granite State will become the top GOP pick-up opportunity in 2022.

Wisconsin: Lean Republican to Toss-up. Republican Sen. Ron Johnson is a lightning rod in a state that is pretty evenly split politically. He has not yet announced whether he will seek a third term. In either case, Democrats are likely to field a strong nominee.

Updated forecast map below.  Click or tap for an interactive version.

Live Results: Special Elections Across Five State Districts in Alabama, Georgia and Wisconsin

July 13, 2021

There are five legislative special general elections on Tuesday. The most competitive interparty contest is a runoff for a Georgia State House seat in suburban Atlanta.

State Senate

Alabama District 14

There are 35 State Senate districts in Alabama. Currently, the chamber has 26 Republicans and 8 Democrats. The next regularly scheduled election is in 2022.

District 14 is a largely rural area in the central part of the state. The vacancy there was created when Republican Cam Ward was appointed Director of the Alabama Bureau of Pardons and Paroles last December.  In 2018, Ward was reelected with about 73% of the vote.

The major party nominees are former State Rep. April Weaver (R) and attorney Virginia Applebaum (D).  Polls close at 8:00 PM Eastern Time.

State House

Alabama District 73

There are 105 State House districts in Alabama. The chamber is comprised of 76 Republicans and 27 Democrats. Alabama is one of only five states with four-year terms for the lower body in the state legislature.1 1The others are Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi and North Dakota. The next regularly scheduled election is in 2022.

District 73 is located in Shelby County, in the central part of the state. It is largely within the boundaries of Senate District 14 discussed above. The seat became vacant last December after Republican Matt Fridy was elected to the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals. In 2018, Fridy was reelected with about 69% of the vote. 

The Republican nominee is Kenneth Paschal, who narrowly won the primary runoff on April 27. Sheridan Black is the Democratic nominee. Polls close at 8:00 PM Eastern Time.

Georgia (runoffs)

There are 180 State House districts in Georgia. Currently, the chamber has 101 Republicans and 77 Democrats. The next regularly scheduled elections are in 2022. 

Under Georgia special election law, both these seats were contested in all-party primaries on June 15. Neither primary saw a candidate get a majority of the vote, necessitating Tuesday's top two runoffs. Polls close at 7:00 PM Eastern Time.

District 34

The suburban Atlanta District 34 vacancy was created by the resignation of Republican Bert Reeves on April 30. Reeves was in his fourth term. He had most recently won reelection by a 56%-44% margin over Democrat Priscilla Smith, who is on the ballot again Tuesday.

Republican Devan Seabaugh led the five-person June primary. He received 47% of the vote, narrowly missing an outright win. Priscilla Smith finished second with just under 25%. In total, Republicans on the ballot received 59% of the vote to 40% for Democrats. 

This is the most competitive of Tuesday's elections that include nominees from both major parties.

District 156

District 156 is in the southeastern part of the state, including Vidalia. The vacancy was created by the resignation of Republican Greg Morris on April 13. Morris was first elected to the legislature in 1999. He had represented District 156 since 2012, running unopposed in the general election each time.

As befits this conservative area, Republicans took both spots in the runoff. Leesa Hagan and Wally Sapp combined for 85% of the vote. However, the two were separated by just 37 votes, with Hagan leading by 43% to 42% over Sapp.

Given that primary result, it is possible that this ends up being the closest race of the day in terms of voting totals while, at the same time, being the only race 100% guaranteed to be won by one of the parties before a single vote is counted.

Wisconsin Assembly District 37

The Wisconsin State House is called the State Assembly

There are 99 Assembly districts in Wisconsin. Currently, the chamber has 60 Republicans and 38 Democrats. The next regularly scheduled elections are in 2022.

Located northeast of Madison, the District 37 vacancy was created with the resignation of Republican John Jagler in April. He had won a special election for a vacant State Senate seat earlier that month. Jagler had represented the district since first being elected in 2012, most recently being reelected by a 56% to 41% margin in 2020.

The Democratic nominee is Pete Adams. The Republican nominee is William Penterman, who narrowly won the June 15 party primary. Although Penterman received only about 20% of the vote in a crowded eight-person field that day, he is the favorite in this GOP leaning district. Polls close at 9:00 PM Eastern Time.

Upcoming July 27

Eric Adams Wins NYC Democratic Mayoral Primary; Poised to be City's Second Black Mayor

July 6, 2021

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams is the projected winner of the New York City Democratic mayoral primary. Adams held a narrow one-point lead over former Sanitation Commissioner Kathryn Garcia in updated results released late Tuesday. However, with most of the ballots included in those results, the Associated Press and Decision Desk felt comfortable calling the race for Adams.

Adams will be an overwhelming favorite in the general election against the GOP nominee, Curtis Sliwa. If victorious in November, he'll be the second black mayor in city history. David Dinkins served one term from 1990-1993.

Eric Adams Narrowly Leads NYC Mayoral Race After Latest Ranked Choice Tabulation

July 6, 2021

Eric Adams holds a one-point lead over Kathryn Garcia in the latest ranked-choice vote results released by the New York City Board of Elections. In terms of votes, Adams leads by 8,426 votes.

This tabulation included a large portion of absentee ballots, which had not yet been counted in the first ranked-choice results released last Tuesday.