Category2022 elections

Krishnamoorthi defeats Democratic primary challenger in Illinois’ 8th Congressional District

Incumbent U.S. Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi defeated Junaid Ahmed in the Democratic primary for Illinois’ 8th Congressional District on June 28, 2022.

According to unofficial results, Krishnamoorthi received 71% of the vote to Ahmed’s 29%.

Krishnamoorthi was first elected to represent the 8th District in 2016. Before entering office, Krishnamoorthi was a partner at the law firm Kirkland & Ellis and president of a research and development company. He also worked as a policy director on Barack Obama’s (D) 2004 Senate campaign.

Krishnamoorthi, who immigrated to the U.S. as a child, emphasized his experience in office and said he “worked his hardest to ensure other Americans have the same opportunities his family had to achieve the American Dream.” Krishnamoorthi said he “co-authored successful legislation to expand federal support for career and technical education” and “[advocated] for protecting Social Security and Medicare.” Krishnamoorthi received endorsements from the Chicago Tribune and Planned Parenthood Action Fund.

As of June 8, 2022, Krishnamoorthi had raised $6.5 million and Ahmed had raised $1.1 million.

During the primary, Ahmed criticized Krishnamoorthi on the amount of money the incumbent raised, saying, “[W]e are being represented by a political class who are more interested in representing the needs of their corporate donors … than in representing the needs of the hard working families of the 8th district.”

In a debate, Krishnamoorthi said, “I raise as much as I can because I go after the special interests in Washington. … You can ask the rental car companies, the meat processing companies, the oil and gas companies that I’m now investigating what they think of me.”

Following redistricting, the 8th District remained in the Chicago area. At the time of the primary, three election forecasters rated the general election as Solid or Safe Democratic.

Casten defeats Newman in the Democratic primary for Illinois’ 6th Congressional District

Sean Casten defeated Marie Newman and Charles Hughes in the Democratic primary for Illinois’ 6th Congressional District on June 28, 2022. Casten and Newman are members of the U.S. House of Representatives running for re-election in the same district due to redistricting.

The race was one of six U.S. House primaries with two incumbents running against each other in 2022. Including Newman, nine U.S. House incumbents have lost re-election so far this year.

Newman represented Illinois’ 3rd Congressional District. Casten was the incumbent in the redrawn 6th District. According to Chicago-based political consultant Frank Calabrese, 41% of the constituents in the new district were from Newman’s district, and 23% were from Casten’s.

Both Casten and Newman cited climate change as a top issue. Casten, a member of the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis and the co-founder of an energy recycling company, said he supported market-based climate change legislation. Casten introduced several climate-related bills, including the End Oil and Gas Tax Subsidies Act. Newman sponsored the America’s Clean Future Fund Act, which proposed applying a carbon fee on the use of certain fuels and using the proceeds to fund other energy initiatives. Newman criticized Casten for not supporting the Green New Deal. Casten said the Green New Deal “understands the urgency and doesn’t understand the complexity [of the problem].”

The League of Conservation Voters and Clean Energy for America endorsed Casten. The Sustainable Energy and Environment Coalition endorsed both Casten and Newman.

Both incumbents also focused on abortion. Newman spoke about her experience getting an abortion when she was 19 years old, saying, “It was not a shameful act. No woman should feel guilty for making a decision over her body, no matter the circumstances.” Newman criticized Casten for voting for George H.W. Bush and Bob Dole, Republicans she called anti-choice.

Casten said his voting record was 100% pro-choice. In a campaign ad, Casten said, “Women have a fundamental right to make their own decisions, especially when it comes to abortion.” Casten added, “I fought against defunding Planned Parenthood. I always have and always will oppose any measure, any attempt, to diminish or take away your rights.”

Planned Parenthood and the National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL) endorsed both Casten and Newman.

Casten criticized Newman for not disclosing the details of a settlement between her and a man who said Newman offered him a job in exchange for him not to run against her in the 2020 Democratic primary. Newman called the allegations a distraction and said Casten should address an FEC complaint alleging that his campaign coordinated with a Super PAC during the 2018 Democratic primary.

Newman was first elected in 2020, when she defeated incumbent Rep. Dan Lipinski (D) in the Democratic primary. Newman won the general election 56.4% to 43.6%.

Casten was first elected in 2018 after defeating six-term incumbent Rep. Peter Roskam (R) 53.6% to 46.4%. Casten’s win was the first time a Democrat won in the 6th district since 1972. Casten was re-elected in 2020 52.8% to 45.4%.

Two election forecasters rate the general election as Likely Democratic, while one rate it Lean Democratic, meaning the primary winner will likely have an edge in the general election.

Giannoulias defeats Valencia in the Democratic primary for Illinois secretary of state

Alexi Giannoulias defeated Anna Valencia and two other candidates in the Democratic Party primary for Illinois secretary of state on June 28, 2022. Giannoulias received 53% of the vote to Valencia’s 40%.

Giannoulias and Valencia led in media attention, fundraising, and endorsements going into the primary. David Moore and Sidney Moore also ran in the primary.

Giannoulias served as Illinois state treasurer and was the Democratic nominee for U.S. Senate in Illinois in 2010. Former Gov. Pat Quinn (D) appointed Giannoulias as chairman of the Illinois community college system in 2011. Giannoulias also worked as a professor and founded the Kanela Breakfast Club Restaurant Group. Giannoulias said he decided to run because the government “has prioritized the interests of the powerful and wealthy over the welfare of the majority, resulting in a lack of trust and confidence in our elected officials, especially among those with less means and people of color who have been left out and alienated by the status quo.”

Valencia has been Chicago’s city clerk since 2017. Valencia worked for the campaigns of Sen. Dick Durbin (D), Sen. Gary Peters (D), and Rep. Mike Quigley (D) and as director of legislative counsel and government affairs in the Chicago mayor’s office. Valencia said she would “fight to improve services by increasing transparency, modernizing state government, and focusing on more flexible services” and “be a voice for people who often don’t see themselves in state leaders like downstaters, working families, moms, and people of color.”

Describing the dynamics of the race, the Chicago Tribune‘s Jeremy Gorner said, “Giannoulias and Valencia have made ethics a central issue in the race for an office that has a history of corruption in Illinois.” Giannoulias said Valencia, as Chicago city clerk, should have been more transparent about her husband’s work as a lobbyist. “She’s currently married to someone who lobbies the city of Chicago that she serves, and yet she says that if she’s elected, she says she won’t (vouch for him) then,” Giannoulias said. “My opponent wants to distract from his 10 years of being MIA, and then popping up to run,” Valencia said.

Valencia criticized Giannoulias’ handling of Bright Start, the state’s college savings fund, during his time as state treasurer and said the bank Giannoulias’ family founded, Broadway Bank, made “sketchy loans to mobsters.” Giannoulias said he was “very proud of the work I did as state treasurer. We ran one of most ethical offices in the country,” adding that Broadway Bank “helped tens of thousands of people achieve the American dream.”

Incumbent Jesse White (D), who did not seek re-election, was first elected to the secretary’s office in 1998. In the last general election, White defeated Jason Helland (R) 68% to 29%.

Sorensen defeats five other candidates in the Democratic primary for Illinois’ 17th Congressional District

Eric Sorensen defeated five other candidates in the Democratic primary for Illinois’ 17th Congressional District on June 28, 2022. Based on unofficial returns, Sorensen received 38% of the vote, while Litesa Wallace came in second with 23%. Incumbent Rep. Cheri Bustos (D) did not run for re-election.

Sorensen, Wallace, Jonathan Logemann, and Angie Normoyle led in fundraising ahead of the primary.

Sorensen, a TV meteorologist in the Quad Cities area, focused on climate change, saying, “Now is the time to act, and we need an experienced climate communicator to lead.” Sorensen also focused on LGBTQ issues and spoke about experiencing discrimination early in his career. Sorensen said, “[At my first TV job], I was told that I couldn’t be gay and work there. My experiences in Rockford and the Quad Cities were quite different — I was able to be out on TV! And in the Quad Cities, I took a more active role in our LGBTQ community.”

The LGBTQ Victory Fund, Equality PAC, and Climate Hawks Vote endorsed Sorensen.

Wallace represented the 67th District in the Illinois House of Representatives from 2014 to 2019. A single mother and a mental health counselor, Wallace focused on childcare issues. Wallace said, “When I get to Congress, I will fight hard to expand affordable childcare programs for parents who are working lower-wage jobs or who are in school or training programs.” In 2018, Wallace ran in the Democratic primary for lieutenant governor of Illinois on the ticket of gubernatorial candidate Daniel Biss (D), losing the primary 45.1% to 26.7% to J.B. Pritzker and Juliana Stratton.

Our Revolution, the Illinois Federation of Teachers, Democracy for America, and the Illinois chapter of the SEIU endorsed Wallace.

Logemann, a member of the Rockford City Council, focused on his background as a teacher and a member of the National Guard, saying, “Service to community is something that’s very important to me.” Logemann also highlighted labor issues, saying, “I am running to raise wages, fight for workplace protections, defend the right to collectively bargain, and ensure our workers are treated fairly.”

Illinois AFL-CIO, the Illinois Education Association, VoteVets PAC, and the Chicago Tribune endorsed Logemann.

Normoyle, a member of the Rock Island County board and a professor at Augustana College, said education was a top issue. Normoyle highlighted her work serving on the Moline school board, saying, “During my time on the School Board, we modernized the Moline School District, expanding schools to provide space for alternative learning, art, extracurriculars, and more.” Normoyle also focused on her ties to the district, saying, “We need more representatives who lead with a local approach – who meet with community leaders, hold open meetings, and listen to community members, not special interests.”

The Leadership Now Project endorsed Normoyle.

The lines of the 17th District changed after re-districting. According to FiveThirtyEight, the old district had a partisan lean of R+5, while the new district has a partisan lean of D+4. One election forecaster rated the general election Tilt Democratic, while two rated it a Toss-up, suggesting it will be competitive.

Jacqueline McGowan and Marsha Williams also ran in the primary.

Pam Anderson wins Republican nomination for Colorado secretary of state

Former Jefferson County Clerk Pam Anderson won the Republican primary for Colorado secretary of state on June 28, 2022, receiving 44% of the vote. Mike O’Donnell and Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters received 29% and 27% of the vote, respectively.

Heading into the primary, Anderson and Peters led in fundraising and media attention. The 2020 election results and election administration took a central role in the race.

The Colorado Sun‘s Jesse Paul wrote, “In virtually every major Republican primary race in Colorado this year … voters will have a choice between a candidate or candidates who … believe the outcome of the last presidential election was fraudulent and those who don’t.”

Regarding the secretary of state primary, Paul described the candidates as, “Peters … [who is] under indictment in a breach of her county’s voting system that she’s accused of orchestrating as part of her efforts to uncover fraud … [and] Anderson, who rejects 2020 election fraud claims.”

Anderson, who highlighted her experience as a city and county clerk, said she was “[t]he only candidate with a record of securing Colorado’s elections,” and that she ensured the use of paper ballots, made ballots public record, and implemented election audits. Anderson received endorsements from three former Republican secretaries of state and The Colorado Springs Gazette.

Anderson will face incumbent Jena Griswold (D) in the general election. Griswold first won election in 2018, defeating former Sec. of State Wayne Williams (R) and ending a 56-year streak of Republican control in the office.

Griswold received 53% of the vote in 2018. More recently, in 2020, Joe Biden (D) won Colorado with 55% of the vote to Donald Trump’s (R) 42%.

4.6% of state legislative incumbents who filed for re-election have lost in primaries

So far this year, 121 state legislative incumbents—20 Democrats and 101 Republicans—have lost to primary challengers.

Across the 26 states that have held primaries, 4.6% of incumbents running for re-election have lost, more than in previous cycles.

In addition to earlier primaries, these totals include initial results from primaries in Colorado, Illinois, New York, Oklahoma, and Utah and primary runoff results in South Carolina. Incumbents defeated in those states so far include:

  • Three Republicans in Oklahoma; and,
  • One Democrat and two Republicans in Utah, adding to three Republican incumbents defeated in conventions there last April. Those convention defeats are included in primary defeat totals.

No incumbents have lost in Colorado or Illinois. Additionally, in New York, no incumbents have lost so far, though only the state Assembly held primaries on June 28. The Senate will hold its primaries in August.

This year, Republican incumbents have lost at a higher rate than Democrats. Of the 1,531 Republican incumbents who filed for re-election, 101 (6.6%) have lost to primary challengers. For Democrats, 20 of the 1,101 who filed for re-election (1.8%) have lost.

But fewer Democratic incumbents are facing primary challengers than their Republican counterparts. Around 21% of Democratic incumbents who filed for re-election faced contested primaries compared to 32% for Republicans.

In these 26 states, 2,634 incumbents filed for re-election, 711 of whom (27%) faced primary challengers.

Twenty-eight of these 121 incumbent defeats (23%) were guaranteed due to redistricting.When states redraw legislative lines, incumbents can oftentimes end up in a new district with other incumbents leading to incumbent v. incumbent primaries or general elections. Since, in these races, there are more incumbents running than nominations or seats available, at least one incumbent must lose.

Of the 26 states that have held primaries so far, eight have Democratic trifectas, 15 have Republican trifectas, and three have divided governments with Democrats controlling the governorship and Republicans controlling both legislative chambers. Across these 26 states, there are 3,337 seats up for election, 54% of the nationwide total.

The figures for 2022 will likely increase. There are currently 50 uncalled primaries featuring incumbents—28 Democratic and 22 Republican—and 20 primaries featuring New York Senate incumbents scheduled for Aug. 23.

Ezell defeats incumbents Palazzo in primary runoff for Mississippi’s 4th Congressional District

Mike Ezell defeated incumbent Steven Palazzo in the June 28 Republican primary runoff for Mississippi’s 4th Congressional District on June 28, 2022. In the June 7 primary, Palazzo received 31.6% of the vote, while Ezell received 25.1%. Both candidates advanced to a runoff because no candidate received more than 50% of the vote.

Palazzo was first elected to the U.S. House in 2010. From 2006 to 2011, he served in the Mississippi House of Representatives. Palazzo said voters should choose him because of his experience in Congress, relationships at the state, local, and federal levels, and seat on the House Committee on Appropriations. Palazzo said, “If we lose this Appropriations seat, we will not get it back.” Palazzo also said, “I’m the one with the proven track record. I’ve been working hard for south Mississippi for over 12 years. Look, $26 billion for 26 ships since 2011, fighting for our men and women in uniform, helping to secure funds for the wall on our southern border. I think I’ve been an effective legislator for south Mississippi.” Louisiana Rep. Steve Scalise (R) and the National Right to Life endorsed Palazzo’s re-election.

Ezell is the Jackson County Sheriff, a position to which he was first elected in 2014. Ezell campaigned on protecting the 2nd Amendment, securing the border, and growing the economy. Ezell said voters should choose him because of his law enforcement experience: “From the chaos and crisis on our southern border to the crime and drugs that are hurting so many communities across our country, it’s going to take someone in Congress with real law enforcement experience to tackle these issues that affect all of us.” The candidates who lost in the June 7 primary—Clay Wagner, Brice Wiggins, Carl Boyanton, Raymond Brooks, and Kidron Peterson—endorsed Ezell.

Allegations that Palazzo previously misused campaign funds were an issue in the primary, with Ezell saying, “Steven Palazzo has been under the cloud of an ethics investigation.” In 2020, the Office of Congressional Ethics released a report that said the allegations should be further investigated because “there is substantial reason to believe that Rep. Palazzo converted funds to personal use to pay expenses that were not legitimate and verifiable campaign expenditures attributable to bona fide campaign or political purposes.” Palazzo denied the allegations. Palazzo’s campaign spokesman said, “All of this from the beginning was political, created by Congressman Palazzo’s political opponents…We’ve long been ready to get this behind us and we fully believe it will be resolved in Congressman Palazzo’s favor.” The House Ethics Committee’s review of the allegations is ongoing.

Joe O’Dea wins Republican primary for U.S. Senate in Colorado

Joe O’Dea defeated Ron Hanks in the Republican Party primary for U.S. Senate in Colorado on June 28. O’Dea received 55.5% of the vote to Hanks’ 44.5%.

Leading up to the primary, Hanks and O’Dea led in media attention, and O’Dea maintained a lead in fundraising. According to the most recent Federal Election Commission data available, O’Dea had raised over $2.3 million and Hanks had raised $124,840 as of June 8.

O’Dea is the CEO of a Denver-based heavy civil contracting company and owner of the Mile High Station and Ironworks event centers. O’Dea said he ran for Senate “[t]o break the cycle of partisanship. To rebuild this country. To get it moving forward again. Colorado deserves a Senator who represents our voice.”

Hanks is a member of the Colorado House of Representatives representing District 60 since his election in 2020. A U.S. Air Force veteran, Hanks also worked as a linguist, a counterdrug officer, and a counterintelligence agent. Hanks said he was “the only proven conservative state legislator running” and “is adamantly pro-life and an ardent and active supporter of our second amendment.”

Key issues in the race included abortion and the 2020 election. Hanks said all abortions should be banned, and he “believe[s] life starts at conception. There should not be any exceptions.” The primary will “come down to that issue first and foremost. Are we a pro-life party, or aren’t we? I will tell you, I am pro-life, and my opponent is not. End of story,” Hanks said. 

O’Dea said he didn’t support overturning Roe v. Wade or total bans on abortions: “I don’t support a total ban. The country is not 100% pro-life. The country is not 100% pro-choice.” O’Dea said he “would vote for a bill that protects a woman’s right to choose early in the pregnancy. I would also protect that right in cases of rape, incest and medical necessities.”

On the 2020 election, Hanks said he believed former Pres. Donald Trump (R) won. Hanks said election security became a priority for him after 2020: “Just like the changes we felt after 9/11, my mission as a state representative shifted to election integrity. I have been fighting for it ever since.” O’Dea said he did not believe the election was stolen and that Republicans should “stay to the issues” in their campaigns. “I’ve been very clear about my stance. Biden’s our president. He’s lousy,” O’Dea said.

Incumbent Sen. Michael Bennet (D) was first elected in 2008, and in the 2016 election, won re-election with 50% of the vote. In the state’s 2020 U.S. Senate election, John Hickenlooper (D) defeated incumbent Cory Gardner (R) 54% to 44%, and Joe Biden won the state in the 2020 presidential election by 13 percentage points. In its June 14 ratings, The Cook Political Report rated the general election as Likely Democratic.

Running in a new district, Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich) faces three primary challengers

Rashida Tlaib, Kelly Garrett, Shanelle Jackson, and Janice Winfrey are running in the Democratic primary for Michigan’s 12th Congressional District on August 2, 2022. Tlaib, the representative for Michigan’s 13th Congressional District, is running in the 12th District due to redistricting. U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell (D), the district’s current representative, is running in the 6th District. 

In a statement on her choice to run in the 12th District, Tlaib said: “As expected, communities [in my current district] were unfortunately split up between the new 12th and 13th Congressional Districts… [The 12th District] contains nearly two-thirds of the people I currently serve. I’m excited to continue to fight for our residents and engage with new neighbors in Wayne and Oakland counties.” 

Tlaib was first elected to Congress in 2018. Tlaib’s top priorities on her website included “racial and immigration justice, economic and housing justice, healthcare for all, human rights around the world, environmental justice, and LGBTQ+ and gender justice.” Her endorsements include the Democratic Socialists of America, the Michigan AFL-CIO, the Michigan Education Association, Our Revolution, and Planned Parenthood.

Jackson served in the Michigan House of Representatives from 2007 to 2013 and worked in financial technology. Jackson’s top priorities on her website included narrowing pay equity gaps, supporting Ukraine in its war with Russia, supporting cryptocurrency and opposing its regulation, and increasing the national minimum wage.

Winfrey is the Detroit city clerk. She highlighted her experience in that role through the city’s bankruptcy in 2013 and the COVID-19 pandemic as evidence of her ability to lead in difficult times. Winfrey’s top priorities on her website included working across the aisle in Congress, reducing inflation, healthcare, and supporting Israel as a free state.

Garrett is the Mayor of Lathrup Village and served as Mayor Pro Tem from 2013 to 2017. In a candidate survey submission to Ballotpedia, she said that key issues included “challenges around climate control, renewable energy, crime and violence in our neighborhoods, and the survival of our small businesses.”

Darren Bailey wins Republican nomination for governor of Illinois

Photo of the Illinois State Capitol building

Darren Bailey defeated Richard Irvin, Jesse Sullivan, and three other candidates in the Republican primary for governor of Illinois on June 28, 2022. 

Bailey is a state senator and farmer who was first elected to office in 2020. A campaign ad said, “In Springfield, Darren stood up for working families and fought against every single tax increase. When Governor Pritzker tried to close Illinois, Darren sued him and won to keep our state open. Now, Darren is running for governor with a plan to cut our taxes, fund our police, and impose term limits on politicians.” Former President Donald Trump (R) endorsed Bailey on June 25.

Along with Bailey, Richard Irvin and Jesse Sullivan led the Republican primary field in fundraising and media coverage leading up to the primary. Irvin is an attorney who has served as mayor of Aurora, Illinois, since he was elected in 2017. Sullivan is a venture capitalist who has not previously held political office.

Gary Rabine, Paul Schimpf, and Max Solomon also ran in the primary.

Bailey will face incumbent Governor J.B. Pritzker (D) in the November general election. Pritzker was first elected in 2018, defeating then-incumbent Bruce Rauner (R) 55% to 39%. As of June 28, 2022, The Cook Political Report and Inside Elections rated the 2022 general election as Solid Democratic, and Sabato’s Crystal Ball rated the race as Likely Democratic.