Offbeat: Key takeaways from Ohio special election and primaries in four other states - - PressFrom - US
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Offbeat Key takeaways from Ohio special election and primaries in four other states

13:06  08 august  2018
13:06  08 august  2018 Source:   usatoday.com

Trump to visit Ohio to campaign in special House election

  Trump to visit Ohio to campaign in special House election President Trump is due to visit Ohio and campaign for Republican House candidate Troy Balderson, who is seeking to keep what’s been a reliably Republican House seat in GOP hands. Trump is planning to stop by the state's 12th district in the Columbus suburbs on Saturday, The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported late on Tuesday, citing Republican sources.Polls show a tightening race between Balderson and Democrat Danny O'Connor in the Aug. 7 special election for retiring Rep. Pat Tiberi's (R-Ohio) seat, which has been held by Republicans since 1980. Trump carried the district by 11 points in 2016.

WASHINGTON – Voters in five states went to the polls Tuesday, highlighted by a closely-contested congressional race in Ohio plus a bevy of other House, Senate and gubernatorial contests from Michigan to Missouri. 

Here are our top takeaways from Tuesday's results:

House Republicans are in trouble

Ohio’s special election remained too close to call Tuesday night but this race should have been a cake-walk for the GOP. The fact that 31-year-old Democrat Danny O’Connor, a county recorder, made it so competitive is a bad sign for the GOP heading into November, especially since Republicans pulled out all the stops to boost their candidate, GOP state Sen. Troy Balderson.

The Latest: Battleground Ohio decides final special election

  The Latest: Battleground Ohio decides final special election Battleground Ohio is deciding the year's final special election, a congressional faceoff that tests anew President Donald Trump's political clout and the appeal of his signature tax cuts. Seventy-one-year-old Gregg Schirra voted Tuesday for Democrat Danny O'Connor. He says, "We gave Trump a fair chance and now it's time to get the legislature working and get back on track." Seventy-one-year-old Katheryn Terry voted for Republican Troy Balderson, saying she felt his opponent was too young at 31.6:20 p.m.

The GOP spent more than $4 million on the special election, a district Republicans have controlled for more than three decades. They attacked O’Connor as a puppet for the ever-unpopular House Democratic leader, Nancy Pelosi, even though he said he would not support her for speaker. And they dispatched President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence to campaign for Balderson.

All that for a virtual tie in the vote tally. Balderson held a narrow lead over O’Connor but the race remained too close to call officially. 

No matter who wins, the close finish signals a possible “Blue Wave” election that could catapult Democrats to a House majority come November. There are 68 Republican-held districts where the GOP holds a weaker hand in terms of partisan makeup, according to the Cook Political Report.

Ohio Dems optimistic, Republicans cite encouraging turnout numbers as polls close in pivotal special election

  Ohio Dems optimistic, Republicans cite encouraging turnout numbers as polls close in pivotal special election Polls have closed in several key state races, including a tightly contested Ohio special election widely seen as a referendum on President Trump and Republicans' legislative agenda ahead of the midterm elections in November.Load Error

"The GOP have to do something really significant in September if they want to keep the House in November," Frank Luntz, a longtime Republican pollster, tweeted Tuesday night.

Tuesday's special election is to fill a vacancy left by ex-Rep. Pat Tiberi, who retired earlier this year. Balderson and O'Connor will face off again in November, when they vie for a full two-year term in the House. 

Mini-takeaway on Ohio: Democrats may be cursing the Green Party candidate Joe Manchik, who snagged more than 1,100 votes. Presumably, most of those came from left-leaning voters who would otherwise have supported O’Connor. It’s not clear if that would have made up the difference for the Democrat, but it has to be frustrating in such a close race.

O'Connor leads Balderson in special election early returns

  O'Connor leads Balderson in special election early returns Democrat Danny O'Connor has jumped out to a significant lead over Republican Troy Balderson in early returns in Ohio's congressional special election. Voters on Tuesday were choosing between Balderson, a state senator, and O'Connor, the Franklin County recorder, to complete the term of a Republican who retired in January. An O'Connor win would elate Democrats hoping for a backlash against President Donald Trump, who campaigned for Balderson.Voters on Tuesday were choosing between Balderson, a state senator, and O'Connor, the Franklin County recorder, to complete the term of a Republican who retired in January.

More (and more) women are winning Democratic primaries

Female candidates have been winning Democratic primaries up and down the ballot so far this election cycle. And Tuesday's results put an exclamation point on this trend, as women notched primary wins in Kansas and Michigan's gubernatorial races

Five takeaways from Ohio's too-close-to-call special election

  Five takeaways from Ohio's too-close-to-call special election Republicans are clinging to a razor-thin lead in Ohio's hotly contested House special election. It was a race the GOP had expected to win easily, but that ended up demonstrating the high level of Democratic enthusiasm ahead of the midterms in November.

In Michigan, Gretchen Whitmer, a former state Senate minority leader, defeated two Democratic rivals to claim her party's nomination. With Whitmer’s win, Michigan’s Democrats are poised to field an all-female ticket for statewide offices.

In addition to Whitmer and Debbie Stabenow, who is seeking a fourth Senate term, the Democrats also nominated women for state attorney general and secretary of state.

Whitmer will face GOP nominee Bill Schuette, currently the state's attorney general, in what's expected to be an especially competitive general election.  

Democrats are hoping to recapture Michigan's governorship after eight years of GOP rule. Current Republican Gov. Rick Snyder, a Republican, is term-limited. 

In Kansas, Laura Kelly, a state senator, won the Democratic gubernatorial nomination in a hotly contested primary. Democrats think they can make this ruby-red state competitive, in part because ex-Gov. Sam Brownback, a Republican, remains deeply unpopular after pushing through sweeping tax cuts that created severe financial trouble for the state. 

The Republican gubernatorial primary remained too close to call Tuesday, with Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer was locked in a tight race with Secretary of State Kris Kobach in early results.

4 reasons Republicans should be worried about Tuesday's election results

  4 reasons Republicans should be worried about Tuesday's election results On Tuesday, Democrat Danny O'Connor fought Republican Troy Balderson to what's essentially a draw in a special election for Ohio's 12th congressional district. In 2016, the district went for President Trump by 11 percentage points and elected Rep. Pat Tiberi (R) by 37 points. Balderson will presumably eke out a victory after the 8,500 absentee and provisional ballots are processed. Indeed, he has already claimed victory, and a win is a win. But On Tuesday, Democrat Danny O'Connor fought Republican Troy Balderson to what's essentially a draw in a special election for Ohio's 12th congressional district. In 2016, the district went for President Trump by 11 percentage points and elected Rep. Pat Tiberi (R) by 37 points.

A rare win for labor unions in Republican-leaning Missouri

Missouri voters overwhelmingly rejected a right-to-work law Tuesday that would have banned unions from collecting mandatory dues. The battle, which attracted big money on both sides, provides a much-needed boost for organized labor after a series of legal and political losses.

The GOP-controlled state legislature passed the anti-union law in 2017, but labor organizations and Democrats blocked its enactment and collected enough signatures to force Tuesday's public vote. 

Tuesday's win for unions came after a major blow in June when the Supreme Court's conservative majority ruled 5-4 that unions cannot collect fees from non-members to help defray the costs of collective bargaining. The court ruled that those fees, permitted under a 1977 high court decision, violate the free speech rights of those who do not want to contribute.

Tuesday's vote in Missouri, which has grown increasingly Republican, could give labor groups fresh momentum heading into November's general election, where their political strength will be tested again. 

Bernie Sanders projected to win, decline Vermont Democratic nomination for third Senate term .
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders was projected to easily win the Democratic nomination for a third term Tuesday – though Sanders was expected to decline the nomination and run as an independent in November’s general election. With eight percent of precincts reporting, the democratic socialist Sanders had received 94 percent of the vote compared to six percent for self-described Democratic activist Folasade Adeluola. Sanders, who received 65 percent and 71 percent of the vote in his first two Senate election victories, is a heavy favorite to win re-election.

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