Republican voters picked candidates who ardently supported the fiction of Donald Trump fiction about a stolen election in key primary races from Nevada to South Carolina on Tuesday, sparking Democratic concerns that US democracy will be at peril in the November elections.
Pro-Trump candidates’ triumphs in Nevada have set the stage for a showdown between election-deniers and struggling Democrats in a state that both parties consider crucial in the 2018 elections.
In South Carolina, a vote to attack Trump for encouraging the January 6 uprising proved to be the demise of one Republican, while another escaped the former president’s anger to secure the nomination.
A Republican captured a House seat traditionally supported by a Democrat in South Texas, where Hispanic voters have turned strongly towards the Republican party. The defeat served as a harsh reminder that Democrats’ support among a key electoral demographic is eroding.
As Democrats struggle to protect slim majorities in Congress, Nevada, a battleground state that has leaned Democratic in previous election cycles, will hold a number of significant contests this fall, including House, Senate, governor, and secretary of state.
Every race will count in the 50-50 Senate. However, the party is led by an unpopular president in a political system that is ripe for uprisings against the ruling party. Inflation and the Ukraine war have driven up the cost of food and gas, while voter worry about gun murder and a shortage of infant formula has exacerbated voter dissatisfaction.
The Nevada Senate race is seen by Republicans as one of their greatest opportunities to flip a Democratic seat. They also see an opportunity to acquire traction in a state dominated by Democrats led by Harry Reid, the late Senate majority leader. Catherine Cortez Masto, the senator up for re-election, was his selected successor.
Adam Laxalt, a former state attorney general who has received Trump’s endorsement, handily won the Republican primary to face Cortez Masto in one of the most highly contested contests of the election year.
Jim Marchant, a former lawmaker who has publicly welcomed the idea of overthrowing elections and has dabbled in the QAnon conspiracy theory, will be the Republican nominee for secretary of state, and thus the senior election official in a swing state that might determine the presidential battle in 2024.
As a bipartisan House panel probing the Capitol attack unearths incriminating testimony from Trump’s innermost circle, invalidating the previous president’s allegations, election-denying Republicans are gaining ground across the country.
Adam Laxalt, a previous state attorney general who has received Trump’s endorsement, handily won the Republican primary to face Cortez Masto in one of the most highly contested contests of the election year.
Jim Marchant, a former lawmaker who has publicly welcomed the idea of overthrowing elections and has dabbled in the QAnon conspiracy theory, will be the Republican candidate for secretary of state, and thus the senior elected official in a swing state that might determine the presidential battle in 2024.
As a bipartisan House panel probing the Capitol attack unearths incriminating information from Trump’s innermost circle, invalidating the previous president’s allegations, election-denying Republicans are gaining ground across the country.
Republicans in South Carolina defeated five-term incumbent Tom Rice, who went against Trump and his supporters by voting to remove the previous president.
Rice was beaten by Russell Fry, a Trump-backed Republican state legislator. After recent defeats in races where Trump wanted payback against Republicans who refused his efforts to overturn the 2020 election, the outcome was a pleasant one for Trump.
But, much like in Georgia, his clout was limited. Nancy Mace, a Republican House member, defeated a Trump-backed opponent. Unlike Rice, who was elected in a fiercely conservative district, Mace – who did not vote to impeach Trump but did criticize him – was able to keep his seat by winning support from suburban people who had abandoned the Republican Party during Trump’s presidency.
Trump portrayed the evening as a resounding success on social media. Katie Arrington, Mace’s opponent, was a “bit of a stretch” who “performed FAR better than expected,” he claimed.
“Without a runoff, the ‘Impeacher’ was defeated. “A GREAT night!” Trump posted about Rice on his social networking site, Truth Social.
In Maine, Jared Golden, one of the few Democrats to hold a House district Trump won, will face off against another seat’s former representative, Bruce Poliquin, in a rematch. In the 2018 anti-Trump wave, Golden recently defeated Poliquin. Poliquin aspires to reclaim his seat now that the political winds have shifted. Paul LePage, the state’s abrasive former governor, is also trying a return. He won the Republican nomination to stand against the incumbent, Janet Mills with no opposition.
The defeat in south Texas may have been the most concerning for Democrats. In a special election to fill a seat vacated by a Democratic congressman, Filemón Vela, a Republican state lawmaker, Mayra Flores, sailed to victory, averting a runoff with her major Democratic opponent, Dan Sanchez.
In November, Flores will have to run again. She will face Democratic congresswoman Vicente Gonzalez in a seat that is significantly more left-leaning than the one she will briefly serve due to redistricting.
Nonetheless, some forecasters raised their Republican estimates for the seat, noting advances amongst Hispanic voters in the Rio Grande Valley.
Flores’ triumph, according to a report acquired by CNN from the National Republican Congressional Committee, was the conclusion of efforts to recruit and campaign for more candidates, and it provided a “template for success in South Texas.”