A look at who is running this year’s presidential campaigns

Welcome to the Monday, August 28, Brew. 

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

  1. A look at who is running this year’s presidential campaigns
  2. Previewing Tuesday’s state legislative runoffs in Mississippi
  3. In the latest edition of Hall Pass: The debate over transportation delays in Jefferson County school district

A look at who is running this year’s presidential campaigns

With the first presidential primary debate behind us, let’s take a look at where our list of 2024 noteworthy presidential candidates stands and who runs their campaigns.

As of Aug. 24, we’ve identified 18 noteworthy presidential candidates—three Democrats and 15 Republicans. Ryan Binkley (R) and Perry Johnson (R) both made the list this month after their campaigns announced they had met the fundraising requirements for the presidential debate. Binkley announced his campaign back in April, and Johnson announced his campaign in March.

At this point in the 2016 cycle, there were 22 noteworthy presidential candidates—five Democrats and 17 Republicans. At this point in the 2020 cycle, there were 28—26 Democrats and two Republicans.  

Click here to read more about how we define noteworthy candidates. 

Thus far, we’ve identified 12 campaign managers from the 18 noteworthy presidential campaigns we’re tracking. 

A campaign manager is typically the highest-ranking staff member. They are responsible for coordinating fundraising, strategy, advertising, get out the vote efforts, and more. 

We have not yet identified campaign managers for Ryan Binkley, Chris Christie, Will Hurd, Corey Stapleton, Francis Suarez, or Donald Trump. Know of any staff we missed? Please email us at editor@ballotpedia.org.

In 2020, we identified presidential campaign managers for 22 noteworthy campaigns. One of them—Jennifer O’Malley Dillon— served as campaign manager for two candidates that cycle. She managed Beto O’Rourke presidential campaign until Nov. 2019, when O’Rourke withdrew from the race, and later managed Joe Biden’s campaign through the general election.

On the Republican side, Brad Parscale managed Donald Trump’s campaign from 2018 to July 2020, when Bill Stepien replaced him. Stepien managed Trump’s campaign through the general election.

To read more about the key staffers in the 2024 presidential election, click here. To view our coverage of 2020 presidential campaign staffers, click here. For our coverage of key 2016 campaign staffers, click here.

For our full coverage of the 2024 presidential election, click the link below. 

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In the latest edition of Hall Pass: The debate over transportation delays in Jefferson County school district

Hall Pass is Ballotpedia’s free weekly newsletter that keeps you informed about the conversations driving school board politics and education policy. New editions reach your inbox Wednesday afternoons.

In our most recent edition, we looked at the debate over transportation delays in Jefferson County Public Schools (JCPS), the largest school district in Kentucky. 

ICYMI, here’s the back-story. The district canceled school Aug. 10-17 following school bus transportation delays on Aug. 9—the first day of school. The final students were not dropped off at home until about 10 p.m. that day. The delays were related to driver shortages and the school’s routing software. 

Following the delays, 12 state legislators from Jefferson County released a public letter criticizing JCPS. The legislators wrote the school board doesn’t make student safety a priority and that structural changes are needed to prevent similar problems in the future. They proposed splitting JCPS into multiple smaller districts and allowing parents greater choice in deciding where their kids go to school. They also suggested changes to JCPS leadership might be necessary.

Meanwhile, in The Courier-Journal, Brooklyn Smith, an elementary music teacher in Jefferson County Public Schools, wrote that JCPS should not be blamed for the transportation delays and school cancellations. Smith said splitting the district, encouraging families to switch to private schools, and other structural changes would hurt employees and students. She said instead JCPS needs support to promote public education, pay bus drivers more, and respond to community input.

Last week’s Hall Pass edition also includes responses to a recent question we asked our readers: How should board members address policy disagreements with others on the board? 

A parent and community member from Colorado, a community member from Tennessee, a school board member from Michigan, and a school board president from Pennsylvania were among the readers who responded. 

To read their responses and more, click the link below! And if you’re a school board candidate or incumbent, click here to take our Candidate Connection Survey.

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Previewing Tuesday’s state legislative runoffs in Mississippi

Mississippi is holding state legislative primary runoffs tomorrow. The runoffs follow the Aug. 8 primaries in which Mississippi voters decided 44 contested primaries. 

Mississippi is one of 10 states—and the only one with elections this year—that use primary runoffs. It is also one of five states holding state executive and/or state legislative elections in 2023, along with Kentucky, Louisiana, New Jersey, and Virginia. 

While no Senate primaries advanced to a runoff following the Aug. 8 vote, six House primaries did—including two where incumbents are running. 

Three of the Mississippi runoffs are for Democratic primaries in districts where no Republican is running, meaning the runoff winner will win the general election. 

Of the remaining three runoffs, two are for Republican primaries in districts where no Democrats are running. In the third one, the runoff winner will face a Democratic candidate in the general election. 

Let’s take a quick look at each of the races. 

Democratic primary runoffs

District 72

The Democratic primary runoff in the open District 72 involves two candidates related to local political figures—Justis Gibbs and Rukia Lumumba

Gibbs, who finished first in the Aug. 8 primary with 40.1% of the vote, is the son of the district’s outgoing representative, Debra Gibbs (D). He previously worked as an attorney and served on the state Democratic Party’s executive committee.

Lumumba, who advanced to the runoff after receiving 31% of the vote, is the daughter of former Jackson Mayor Chokwe Lumumba (D) and sister of current Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba (D). Lumumba is a legal professional who previously led the People’s Advocacy Institute and co-founded Black Voters Matter and the MS Rapid Response Coalition.

District 66

Real estate firm owner Fabian Nelson and Tougaloo College Professor Roshunda Harris-Allen are running to replace Rep. De’Keither Stamps (D), who is running for a seat on the Mississippi Public Service Commission. Nelson received 42% of the vote in the Aug. 8 primary, while Harris-Allen received 32%. 

Both candidates completed Ballotpedia’s Candidate Connection survey. Click here to read Harris-Allen’s responses and here to read Nelson’s.  

District 69

Tamarra Butler-Washington and Patty Patterson are running to succeed Rep. Alyce Clarke (D). Clarke, the first Black woman elected to the Legislature, is retiring after representing the district for 38 years. 

Butler-Washington, a staffer with the Mississippi Department of Health, received 49% of the vote in the primary. Patterson, who previously ran for Mayor of Jackson, Mississippi, received 30%. 

Patterson completed Ballotpedia’s Candidate Connection Survey. Click here to read her responses.  

Republican primary runoffs

District 115

Zachary Grady and Felix Gines advanced to the runoff after receiving 47% and 38% of the primary vote, respectively.

Gines, a business owner and Mississippi Air National Guard veteran, was president of the Biloxi City Council. He received endorsements from the Mississippi Public Education PAC and Biloxi Mayor Andrew Gilich. In 2019, Gines ran for District 115 as a Democrat, receiving 47.8% of the vote. He switched parties to become a Republican in 2022.

Grady worked in law enforcement as a patrolman, narcotics detective, and criminal investigator. He received endorsements from the Mississippi Manufacturers Association, the Business and Industry Political Education Committee, and the Mississippi Association of Realtors.

District 2

Incumbent Nick Bain is facing Brad Mattox. Bain received 48% of the vote in the Aug. 8 primary, while Mattox received 35%.  

Bain, an attorney, has represented District 2 since 2012. Mattox is the owner of Big Bang Trading Company, a gun store in Corinth, Mississippi. 

District 105

Incumbent Dale Goodin is facing attorney Elliot Burch. Burch finished first in the Aug. 8 primary, with 46% of the vote to Goodin’s 30%. 

The winner will face Democrat Matthew Daves in the general election. 

The Magnolia Tribune rates the district as “Safe Republican.” According to CNalysis, Former President Donald Trump (R) won the district in 2020 by 65.2 percentage points. 

Click the link below to learn more. 

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