DemDaily: Democratic Women Rock The Primaries

June 13, 2018

Tuesday's Primaries -- in Maine, Nevada,  North Dakota, South Carolina and Virginia -- added to the growing class of female candidates chosen by Democratic primary voters, and to those among the GOP ranks who are paying the price for defying the President.

In Virginia, Democrats nominated a woman in all four of their top-targeted US House seats, while in South Carolina Congressman Mark Sanford, who had publicly critized Trump, lost his primary bid.

THE JUNE 12, 2018 PRIMARY RESULTS

MAINE
Seats Up:  US Senate, US House (1D/1R), Governor, State Executive Offices, State Senate & House, Local Judges, State Ballot Measures, Recalls

Highlights: Incumbent US Senator Angus King, who is an Independent but caucuses with the Democrats, will defend his seat against Zak Ringelstein (D) and Republican State Senator Eric Brakey (R).

Ranked-Choice Voting (RCV) is used in seven states in local jurisdictions, and adopted but not-yet implemented in another five. Maine is the only state to implement at the statewide level.
How It Works
1) In multi-candidate primaries, voters rank their preference of candidates.
2)  If a candidate wins 50%+1 of first round votes, he or she is the winner.
3) If no candidate wins an outright majority in the first round, the candidate with the fewest votes is eliminated.
4) The votes are then re-calculated according to the second choice of the last-place finisher's voters.
5) If, under the new tally, no candidate still has the 50%+1 majority to win, then the process if repeated until one candidate wins a majority of votes cast.

In Maine's 2nd CD, held for two decades by Democrats before Republican Bruce Poliquin won the open seat in 2014, State Rep and Marine Corps veteran Jared Golden is the likely Democratic nominee.

But as of this morning, with 82% of the vote reported, Golden was just shy of the majority needed to win the Democratic nomination outright.  If final tallies don't give Golden the necessary 50%+1, then Maine's Ranked-Choice Voting, or "instant runoff" rule will be triggered.

NEVADA
Seats Up: US Senate, US House (3D/1R), Governor, Lt. Governor, State Executive Offices, State Senate & Assembly, Supreme Court, Local Judges, State Ballot Measures, School Board, Municipal.

Congresswoman Jacky Rosen (D) is considered a serious threat to Senator Dean Heller (R-NV)

Highlights: First appointed in 2011, and reelected by 1% in 2012, Senator Dean Heller (R) is considered the GOP's most vulnerable incumbent, with a tough general election battle against Congresswoman Jacky Rosen, who breezed to victory in the Democratic primary.

In the open seat to succeed term-limited  Republican Governor Brian Sandoval, Clark County Commission Steve Sisolak will face Republican State Attorney General Adam Laxalt, the grandson of former US Senator and Nevada Governor Paul Laxalt.

In the 4th Congressional District, Democrat Steven Horsfordwill face a rematch in November against Republican Cresent Hardy, who defeated Horsford in 2014 before being unseated himself in 2016 by Democrat Ruben Kihuen.  Kihuen's decision, following sexual misconduction allegations, not to seek a second-term, paved the way for November's showdown.

Incumbent Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) is a top GOP Target

NORTH DAKOTA
Seats Up: US Senate, US House (1R), State Executive Offices, State Senate & House, Supreme Court, Local Judges, Recalls.

Highlights: Incumbent Democrat Heidi Heitkamp, the first woman elected to represent North Dakota in the US Senate, will face US Congressman Kevin Cramer in what is expected to be one of the toughest reelection campaigns of 2018.

In Cramer's at-large US House seat, former State Senator Mac Schneider (D) will go head-to-head against State Senator and state Republican Party Chair Kelly Armstrong in November.

SOUTH CAROLINA
Seats Up: US House (1D/6R), Governor, State Executive Offices, State House, Local judges, State Ballot Measures, School Board.

Highlights: The biggest upset was the loss of Republican Congressman Mark Sanford to State Representative Katie Arrington in the First CD.  President Trump came out against Sanford, a former Governor, on election day. Arrington will run against Democrat Joe Cunningham in the general.

While the core of Trump's 35-40% voter base appear to remain loyal to the President's chosen candidates in the primaries, that has not necessarily interpreted to general elections victories -- as proven by Democratic takeovers in Congressional special elections this cycle.

VIRGINIA
Seats Up:  US Senate, US House (4D/7R), School Board, Municipal

Highlights: US Senator Tim Kaine (D), who was also the Democratic nominee for Vice President in 2016, will be challenged by former gubernatorial candidate and Prince William County Supervisor Corey Stewart.  An avid Trump supporter, confederate monument and "pro-white" candidate advocate, Stewart beat State Delegate Nick Freitas 44.86% to 43.12%.

Side Note
In Wisconsin's 1st District State Senate seat, Democrat Caleb Frostman won the special election to fill a seat held for forty years by the GOP, and one which Trump carried by 18 points. It is the 44th legislative district Dems have flipped since Trump took office.

Next Primary: June 19th DC!

DemList will keep you informed.

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Kimberly Scott
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Sources: Ballotpedia, CBSnews, MSNBC, Vox

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