Preliminary in the Upper Midwest on Tuesday will set the stage for two major gubernatorial races, as Republicans in Wisconsin and Minnesota choose their nominees to take on those states’ Democratic incumbents. in november.
Minnesota is also set to fill a House seat after former GOP Representative Jim Hagedorn died in February.
Meanwhile, in Vermont, Representative Peter Welch is running to replace retired Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy, who ushered in the state’s only House seat. The state’s central governor and its supportive Senate president – both Democrats – are vying to be the first woman ever to represent Vermont in Congress.
The heavily democratic Connecticut is also holding primaries on Tuesday, with Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal and Governor Ned Lamont set to be re-elected this fall.
Here are some things to watch in Tuesday’s primaries:
Trump vs. Pence in Wisconsin governor race
The proxy battle over the future of the Republican Party between former President Donald Trump and former Vice President Mike Pence continued on Tuesday in Wisconsin, where a favorite establishment confirmed by Pence went head to head with an outsider. Trump-backed outsiders in a state where he falsely claimed the 2020 election results were fraudulent.
It’s a replay of similar cassation primaries in recent weeks in Arizona, where Trump’s nominee won last week, and Georgia, where Governor Brian Kemp was backed by Pence against challenger aligned with Trump.
In Wisconsin, former Governor Rebecca Kleefisch entered the race as the obvious heir to the GOP in a battleground state dominated by former Governor Scott Walker. She spent eight years as Walker’s No. 2, and was supported by Pence and other established Republicans.
But then construction company owner Tim Michels joined the race, fueled by his own multimillion-dollar fortune and critical endorsement. He is campaigning as an outsider, with the help of Trump; The former President at a recent rally said Kleefisch was “the handpicked candidate of the failed organization, the RINOs.”
Both have accepted Trump’s lies about cheating in the 2020 election. Kleefisch called the 2020 election “rigged,” but said she would not try to prove its results because legally unable to do so. Michels, however, say in a debate that “everything is on the table,” suggesting he would entertain measures aimed at proving President Joe Biden’s victory in Wisconsin.
The winner of the primaries will face Democratic Governor Tony Evers, who is seeking a second term in what is expected to become one of the nation’s most competitive gubernatorial competitions this season. this fall.
Another race to watch in Wisconsin is Congress Speaker Robin Vos’ preliminary race against little-known Adam Steen, who was endorsed by Trump after the former President decided on Vos – a staunch Republican. tried to placate Trump by hiring a former state Supreme Court judge to investigate the 2020 election – did too little to try to overturn Wisconsin’s results. Vos said last month The former President called him last week as part of a new effort to confirm the state’s 2020 results.
The Senate primaries are not
Two weeks ago, the Wisconsin Democratic Senate primaries were arguably the most closely watched primaries on the left, pitting Lieutenant General Mandela Barnes against Alex Lasry, the Milwaukee Bucks chief executive. , who spent more than $12 million of his own money on his campaign; Wisconsin State Treasurer Sarah Godlewski; and Outagamie County Executive Tom Nelson.
And then not.
After internal polls showed Barnes’ lead over his rivals growing, all three bowed over the span of several days, with Nelson, Lasry and Godlewski all endorsing the lieutenant general governor.
“I didn’t expect it to end this way,” Barnes told CNN. “For me, that shows how important it is to beat Ron Johnson, and how important it is to expand the Democratic majority.”
The merger means Barnes and Democrats can pivot earlier to their ultimate goal: defeating Republican Senator Ron Johnson in November.
Johnson, who chose to run for a third term after pledging in 2016 that a second term would be his last, drew the ire of Democrats over a barrage of comments about the attack. public coronavirus, January 6, 2021, and his personal property. But he has proven resilient in the past, ensuring that the race for the Senate in Wisconsin will be one of the closest watched contests of the 2022 cycle.
Southern Minnesota has a new representative
Voters in Southern Minnesota will choose a new congressional representative on Tuesday after Representative Jim Hagedorn died in February of kidney cancer.
The special election, which coincides with Minnesota voters going to vote in the 2022 regular primaries, pits Republican Brad Finstad, head of the USDA’s Rural Development Division for Minnesota, against Democrat Jeffrey Ettinger, who previously served as CEO of Hormel Foods.
The county, which spans the entire southern border of Minnesota, leans toward Republicans.
While voters choose their MP in the special election, they will also vote in the general primary, choosing which candidate will have a chance to try to represent the area for a full term. starting in 2023. Finstad and Ettinger are contenders in that race, as well.
There are other competitions worth watching in Minnesota, including well-funded challenges for incumbents. Democrat Representative Ilhan Omar is being challenged by former Minneapolis City Council member Don Samuels, while Representative Betty McCollum is facing a challenge from progressive Amane Badhasso.
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