Daniel Anderson

Daniel Anderson is a managing editor at Ballotpedia and can be reached at

Mayor David Bieter loses re-election bid to Lauren McLean in Boise runoff

In Boise, Idaho, Mayor David Bieter ran unsuccessfully in Tuesday’s nonpartisan runoff election for a fifth term in office. Lauren McLean, who advanced out of the seven-candidate general election field alongside Bieter back in November, won the runoff and the mayor’s office with 65.5% of the unofficial election night vote.
McLean is the president of the Boise City Council; she was first elected to the council in 2011 and re-elected in 2015. Bieter was first elected mayor in 2003 and re-elected in 2007, 2011, and 2015. Prior to that office, he served as a Democratic member of the Idaho House of Representatives in District 19 from 1999 to 2003.
In the November general election, Boise also had three city council seats on the ballot: Seat 1 (McLean’s position), Seat 3, and Seat 5. These seats were won by Patrick Bageant, Jimmy Hallyburton, and incumbent Elaine Clegg, respectively. The Seat 3 incumbent, Scot Ludwig, did not file for re-election.
Boise is the largest city in Idaho and the 97th-largest city in the U.S. by population.

Minnesota House of Representatives District 30A and 60A special elections

Two new state legislative special elections have been added to our list. The special elections are for the District 30A and 60A seats in the Minnesota House of Representatives on February 4, 2020. The primary for the District 30A seat is on January 14, and the primary for the District 60A seat is on January 21. The filing deadlines are on December 10, 2019.

City seats won in Hialeah and Miami on Tuesday

Two of the nation’s 100 largest cities by population, Hialeah and Miami, both held nonpartisan elections on November 19 after previously holding elections two weeks earlier on November 5, 2019.
In Hialeah, November 5 was the primary election and November 19 was the general election. Four city council seats were up for election. The Group I and Group IV seats were both won outright in the primary by candidates who received more than 50% of the vote. The Group II and Group III seats, however, advanced to the general since no individual candidate met that threshold. The top two vote recipients in each primary advanced to the general election; Jesus Tundidor and Jackie Garcia-Roves ultimately won the Group II and Group III seats, respectively. None of the four seats were won by an incumbent; Lourdes Lozano in Group I was the only incumbent to file for re-election, but she lost in the primary. The council has seven members. Hialeah is the sixth-largest city in Florida and the 88th-largest city in the U.S. by population.
In Miami, November 5 was the general election and November 19 was the general runoff. Three board of commissioners seats were up for election in 2019. In District 1, seven candidates competed in an open-seat race. The top two vote recipients in the general election, Miguel Angel Gabela and Alex Diaz de la Portilla, both advanced to the runoff, which de la Portilla won. The District 1 incumbent, Wifredo Gort, was unable to run for re-election due to term limits. The District 2 seat was won outright in the general election by incumbent Ken Russell. Russell faced four challengers. In District 4, incumbent Manuel Reyes ran unopposed and won re-election by default.
The board of commissioners has five members. Miami is the second-largest city in Florida and the 44th-largest city in the U.S. by population.
Orlando is the state’s last big city scheduled to have an election in 2019. Although the mayor’s office and two city council seats were won outright in the November 5 general election by their incumbent officeholders, the District 6 seat on the city council advanced to an open-seat runoff election. Bakari Burns and Gary Siplin, the top two vote recipients in the general election, both advanced to the runoff election scheduled for December 3, 2019. The incumbent, Samuel Ings, ran unsuccessfully for mayor rather than for re-election to the council. The council has seven members. Orlando is the fourth-largest city in Florida and the 76th-largest city in the U.S. by population.

2019 state appeals court election roundup

On November 5, there were two state judgeships up for election in Kentucky, six up in Pennsylvania, and three up in Washington state. They are among five states in 2019—Kentucky, Louisiana, Pennsylvania, Washington, and Wisconsin—that scheduled elections for 17 appeals court judgeships. This included three state supreme court justice positions and 14 intermediate appellate court judgeships.
  • Kentucky: Christopher Nickell defeated Whitney Westerfield to win the Kentucky Supreme Court 1st District judgeship, and Jacqueline Caldwell defeated Michael Caperton to win the Kentucky Court of Appeals 3rd District, Division 1 judgeship. Both were nonpartisan special elections.
  • Pennsylvania: Two seats on the Pennsylvania Superior Court were up for partisan election, and the race remained too close to call as of November 7. The two leading vote recipients were Daniel McCaffery (D) and Megan McCarthy King (R) with 25.74% and 25.57% of the vote, respectively; Amanda Green-Hawkins (D) trailed in third place with 24.95% and Christylee Peck (R) was in fourth at 23.74%. Four sitting judges—Kevin Brobson and Patricia McCullough on the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court and Anne Lazarus and Judith F. Olson on the Pennsylvania Superior Court—all won retention elections with more than 70% of the vote.
  • Washington: A trio of Washington Court of Appeals judges—John Chun, Lori Smith, and Anne Cruser—won re-election unopposed. All three were nonpartisan special elections; the incumbents had been appointed to vacancies on the court in either June 2018 or February 2019.
  • Wisconsin held its state judicial elections for four seats in February and April.
  • Louisiana had one seat on the ballot in March, but it has another up for general election on November 16. William J. Crain (R) and Hans J. Liljeberg (R) are running in that special election to fill the District 1 seat on the Louisiana Supreme Court that was vacated by Greg Guidry (R), who was appointed to a federal judgeship earlier this year.
In 2020, there are 280 state appeals court judgeships scheduled to be on the ballot in 36 states. This includes 81 state supreme court justice positions across 35 states and another 199 intermediate appellate court judgeships across 29 states. These totals are similar to the 2018 election cycle, which featured 296 state judgeships up for election.