Turnout for Kansas’ Aug. 2 abortion ballot measure

Welcome to the Thursday, August 4, Brew. 

By: Samuel Wonacott

Here’s what’s in store for you as you start your day:

  1. Turnout for Kansas’ Aug. 2 abortion ballot measure
  2. An update on defeated state legislative incumbents, and more from Tuesday’s battleground primaries
  3. A look at Minnesota’s upcoming primaries

Turnout for Kansas’ Aug. 2 abortion ballot measure

On Aug. 2, Kansans rejected an amendment to provide that the state constitution does not secure a right to abortion. The vote was 58.78% ‘No’ to 41.22% ‘Yes’.

Kansas is the first state to vote on an amendment addressing constitutional interpretation and abortion since the Supreme Court’s June 24 decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization overturning Roe v. Wade. The amendment was in response to a 2019 state Supreme Court ruling that the state’s Bill of Rights provides a state constitutional right to abortion.

Based on unofficial results, 908,745 people voted on the constitutional amendment compared to 727,360 in the gubernatorial primaries and 718,545 in the U.S. Senate primaries. Turnout on the amendment exceeded overall turnout at the 2018 (457,598) and 2020 (636,032) state primaries. 

Democratic turnout in the gubernatorial and U.S. Senate primaries was also higher than in recent years. 

  • Of those who voted in the gubernatorial primaries, 38% voted in the Democratic primary compared to 33% in 2018 and 20% in 2014. 
  • Of those who voted in the U.S. Senate primaries, 35% voted in the Democratic primary compared to 32% in 2018, 24% in 2016, and 20% in 2014. 

Since 2014, voters in four states – Alabama, Louisiana, Tennessee, and West Virginia – have approved amendments addressing constitutional interpretation and abortion. The last state to reject one was Florida in 2012. Kentucky is the next state to vote on this type of amendment on Nov. 8. 

In November, voters will decide on four more abortion-related ballot measures. Beside the constitutional amendment in Kentucky, measures will be on the ballot in California, Montana, and Vermont. You can read more about abortion-related measures at the link below.

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An update on defeated state legislative incumbents, and more from Tuesday’s battleground primaries

On Tuesday, we covered elections in six states—Arizona, Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, and Washington. 

Including what we know of those races so far, 156 state legislative incumbents—39 Democrats and 117 Republicans—have lost to primary challengers this cycle. Across the 33 states that have held primaries, 4.7% of incumbents running for re-election have lost—an elevated level of incumbent losses compared to previous cycles.

These totals include data from the six states that held state legislative primaries on Aug. 2. No incumbents have lost, so far, in Arizona, Michigan, and Washington, though races featuring incumbents remain uncalled. For the remaining states:

  1. Kansas: one Democrat and three Republicans lost;
  2. Ohio: one Democrat and two Republicans lost; and,
  3. Missouri: four Democrats and two Republicans lost.

To read more about state legislative incumbents defeated this year and keep up with the latest statistics, click here

U.S. Senate

Masters to face Kelly in November: Blake Masters defeated Jim Lamon, Mark Brnovich, and two other candidates in the Republican primary for U.S. Senate in Arizona. Incumbent Mark Kelly (D) ran unopposed in the Democratic primary. 

Schmitt advances to general election: Eric Schmitt won the Republican primary for U.S. Senate in Missouri. Schmitt defeated Vicky Hartzler, Eric Greitens, and seventeen other candidates. On the Democratic side, Trudy Busch Valentine defeated Lucas Kunce and nine other candidates. 

U.S. House

Schweikert advances to general election: David Schweikert defeated Josh Barnett and Elijah Norton in the Republican primary for Arizona’s 1st Congressional District.  

Arizona’s 2nd Congressional District Republican primary too close to call: Eli Crane defeated Walter Blackman and five other candidates in the Republican primary for Arizona’s 2nd Congressional District.  

Gibbs advances to general election: John Gibbs defeated Incumbent Rep. Peter Meijer in the Republican primary for Michigan’s 3rd Congressional District. Meijer was one of 10 Republicans who voted to impeach former President Donald Trump (R) following the breach of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. Trump endorsed Gibbs in this primary.

Stevens advances to general election: U.S. Rep. Haley Stevens defeated U.S. Rep. Andy Levin in the Democratic primary for Michigan’s 11th Congressional District. Michigan lost one congressional district following the 2020 census, and when the lines were redrawn, its new 11th district included areas represented by multiple Democratic incumbents.


Republican primary for governor of Arizona too close to call: Kari Lake, Scott Neely, Karrin Taylor Robson, and Paola Tulliani-Zen ran in the Republican primary. As of this writing, Lake had received 46% of the vote to Taylor Robson’s 44%. Incumbent Gov. Doug Ducey (R) is term-limited. 

Dixon advances to general election: Tudor Dixon won the Republican primary for governor of Michigan. Dixon will face incumbent Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) in the November general election. 

Attorney general

Kobach advances to general election: Kris Kobach defeated Tony Mattivi and Kellie Warren in the Republican primary for Kansas attorney general. 

Click below to see more Aug. 2 election results. 

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A look at Minnesota’s upcoming primaries

Minnesota primaries take place Aug. 9. Here’s what’s on the ballot.

Congressional primaries

Minnesota is one of 15 states that does not have a U.S. Senate seat up for election this year. All of Minnesota’s eight U.S. House seats are up for election. Democrats hold a 4-3 majority in the U.S. House delegation (with one vacancy in the 1st Congressional District). Former Rep. Jim Hagedorn (R) — the incumbent in the 1st district — passed away while in office on February 17. A special election to fill the seat is scheduled for Aug. 9.

Thirty-two candidates filed to run for Minnesota’s eight U.S. House districts, including 18 Democrats and 14 Republicans. That’s four candidates per district, less than the 4.63 candidates per district in 2020 and the 4.75 in 2018.

Eight candidates — three Republicans and five Democrats, including incumbent Rep. Ilhan Omar (D) — filed to run in the 5th district, the most candidates who filed for a seat this year. There were nine contested primaries this year, five Democratic and four Republican. That number was down from 10 contested primaries in 2020 and 2018.

State primaries

Five state executive offices are up for election in Minnesota, including governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, and secretary of state. All 67 seats in the state Senate and all 134 seats in the state House are also up for election. 

Here’s a rundown of a few of those races. 

Incumbent Gov. Tim Walz and Ole Savior are running in the Democratic primary. Bob Carney Jr., Scott Jensen, and Joyce Lacey are running in the Republican primary. Minnesota’s last Republican governor was Tim Pawlenty, who served from 2003 to 2011. 

Minnesota has a divided government and is one of two states—along with Virginia—with a divided legislature. Republicans hold a 34-31 majority in the state Senate, while Democrats hold a 69-64 majority in the state House. Sixty-three state legislative districts are open, representing 31% of the state’s legislature. That’s an increase compared to the preceding four election cycles.

In Minnesota, the primary candidate with the most votes wins—even if that candidate receives less than 50% of the total vote. Minnesota is one of 40 states without primary election runoffs. In Minnesota, partisan primaries are canceled if all candidates in each party are unopposed. Write-in candidates are prohibited from running in primaries. 

Click below to learn more about Minnesota’s upcoming primaries.  

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