CategoryAnalysis

Delaney and Williamson most frequent campaigners in early states

Ballotpedia has compiled the number of days each Democratic presidential candidate has spent in the four early primary states—Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Nevada—between January 1, 2019, and July 29, 2019.
 
Former Rep. John Delaney was the most frequent campaigner in Iowa, while author Marianne Williamson spent the most days in New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Nevada.
 
Where a candidate focuses his or her campaign can hint at primary strategy and where candidates are trying to fortify coalitions. Here are the top-visited states for the candidates who have qualified for the September primary debate:
 
  • Former Vice President Joe Biden: Iowa
  • Sen. Cory Booker: Iowa and South Carolina
  • South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg: Iowa
  • Sen. Kamala Harris: South Carolina
  • Sen. Amy Klobuchar: Iowa
  • Former Rep. Beto O’Rourke: Iowa
  • Sen. Bernie Sanders: Iowa
  • Sen. Elizabeth Warren: Iowa
 
With at least 20 candidates expected to speak this week at the Iowa State Fair, the state’s largest annual event, Iowa will likely remain the most popular state for campaign visits.
 
Information about the candidates’ schedules was collected from The Des Moines Register, NBC Boston/NECN, The Post & Courier, and The Nevada Independent.


Trump has appointed second-most federal judges through August 1 of a president’s third year

Donald Trump has appointed and the Senate confirmed 146 Article III federal judges through August 1, 2019, his third year in office. This is the second-most Article III judicial appointments through this point in a presidency of all presidents dating back to Theodore Roosevelt. Only Bill Clinton, with 156 judicial appointments, had more.
 
Article III federal judges are appointed for life terms by the president of the United States and confirmed by the U.S. Senate per Article III of the United States Constitution. Article III judges include judges on the Supreme Court of the United States, U.S. courts of appeal, U.S. district courts, and the Court of International Trade.
 
The median number of federal judges appointed by a president through August 1 of their third year in office is 80.4.
 
The median number of Supreme Court justices appointed was two. William Taft’s (R) five appointments are the most among this set. Presidents Franklin Roosevelt (D), Jimmy Carter (D), and George W. Bush (R) did not appoint any justices through August 1 of their third years in office. Trump has appointed 2 justices so far.
 
The median number of United States Court of Appeals appointees was 18. Trump appointed the most with 43, and Presidents Theodore Roosevelt (R) and Woodrow Wilson (D) appointed the fewest with five each. Trump’s 43 appointments make up 24 percent of the total 179 court of appeal judgeships.
 
The median number of United States District Court appointees was 54. Clinton appointed the most with 128, and T. Roosevelt appointed the fewest with 10. Trump has appointed 99 district court judges so far. Those appointments make up 15 percent of the 677 district court judgeships.


Ballotpedia releases federal vacancy count for July

In this month’s federal vacancy count, Ballotpedia tracked nominations, confirmations, and vacancies from June 27 to July 31, 2019. Ballotpedia publishes the federal vacancy count on the last Wednesday of each month.
 
HIGHLIGHTS
  • Vacancies: There have been seven new judicial vacancies since the June 2019 report. There are 114 vacancies out of 870 active Article III judicial positions on courts covered in this report. Including the United States Court of Federal Claims and the United States territorial courts, 123 of 890 active federal judicial positions are vacant.
  • Nominations: There have been two new nominations since the June 2019 report.
  • Confirmations: There have been 21 new confirmations since the June 2019 report.
 
New vacancies
There were 114 vacancies out of 870 Article III judicial positions—13.1 percent, consistent with the vacancy percentage in June 2019.
  • The nine-member U.S. Supreme Court does not have any vacancies.
  • Four (2.2%) of the 179 U.S. Appeals Court positions are vacant.
  • 106 (15.7%) of the 677 U.S. District Court positions are vacant.
  • Four (44.4%) of the nine U.S. Court of International Trade positions are vacant.
 
A vacancy occurs when a judge resigns, retires, takes senior status, or passes away. Article III judges, who serve on courts authorized by Article III of the Constitution, are appointed for life terms. 
 
The following judges vacated their active status. As Article III judicial positions, these vacancies must be filled by a nomination from the president. Nominations are subject to confirmation on the advice and consent of the U.S. Senate.
 
  • Judge Christopher Droney assumed senior status on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit.
  • Judge Joe Heaton assumed senior status on the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma.
  • Judge Judith Herrera assumed senior status on the U.S. District Court for the District of New Mexico.
  • Judge Jack Zouhary assumed senior status on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio.
  • Judge Andrew Guilford assumed senior status on the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.
  • Judge Simeon Lake III assumed senior status on the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas.
  • Judge Peter Phipps vacated his seat on the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania after being elevated to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit.
 
New nominations
President Donald Trump (R) has announced two new nominations since the June 2019 report.
 
  • Lee Rudofsky was nominated to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas.
  • R. Austin Huffaker was nominated to the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama.
 
Since taking office in January 2017, President Trump has nominated 193 individuals to Article III positions.
 
New confirmations
Since June 27, 2019, the U.S. Senate has confirmed 21 of President Trump’s nominees to Article III seats. As of July 31, 2019, the Senate has confirmed 144 of President Trump’s judicial nominees—two Supreme Court justices, 43 U.S. appeals court judges, and 99 U.S. district court judges.
 
  • Daniel Bress, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit.
  • T. Kent Wetherell, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida.
  • Damon Leichty, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana.
  • J. Nicholas Ranjan, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania.
  • Peter Phipps, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit.
  • Clifton L. Corker, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee.
  • Wendy W. Berger, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida.
  • Brian Buescher, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the District of Nebraska.
  • Peter Welte, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the District of North Dakota.
  • Michael Liburdi, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona.
  • Sean Jordan, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas.
  • James Wesley Hendrix, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas.
  • William Shaw Stickman, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania.
  • Martha Pacold, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.
  • Mary Rowland, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.
  • Mark Pittman, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas.
  • Karin J. Immergut, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the District of Oregon.
  • John M. Younge, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
  • Jason Pulliam, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas.
  • Jeff Brown, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas.
  • Brantley Starr, confirmed to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas.
Additional reading:


Potential trifecta changes in five states in 2019 elections

Five states are holding gubernatorial or state legislative elections this year: Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Jersey, and Virginia. All five states could see a change in trifecta status as a result.
 
A state government trifecta exists when one party controls a state’s governorship and holds majorities in both chambers of the state legislature. There are currently 22 Republican trifectas and 14 Democratic trifectas. Sixty-three trifectas have been broken or formed in the past 10 years.
 
As part of Ballotpedia’s ongoing coverage of state elections, we assess the vulnerability of each existing trifecta and the chances of new trifectas forming. None of the five states holding 2019 elections shifted in our ratings this month.
 
Kentucky has been under a Republican trifecta since the party gained a majority in the state House in the 2016 elections. This year, only the governorship is up for election, so Democrats cannot gain a trifecta in Kentucky. If Matt Bevin (R) is re-elected, Kentucky’s Republican trifecta will hold, and if he is defeated it will be broken.
 
Louisiana is under divided government, meaning that neither party has a trifecta, as a result of John Bel Edwards’ (D) victory in the 2015 gubernatorial election. Edwards is up for re-election this year along with all 144 state legislative seats. To gain a trifecta, Democrats would need to hold the governorship and gain majorities in both legislative chambers while Republicans would need to hold their legislative majorities and win the governorship.
 
Republicans have held a trifecta in Mississippi since winning control of the state House in 2011. This year, the governorship and all 174 state legislative seats are up for election. In order to hold their trifecta, Republicans would need to hold the governorship and majorities in both legislative chambers, while Democrats would only need to win the governorship or gain a majority in one chamber to break the Republican trifecta.
 
New Jersey has been a Democratic trifecta since Phil Murphy (D) won the 2017 gubernatorial election. This year, all 80 seats in the state Assembly are up for election. Because the governorship and the state Senate are not up for election, Republicans cannot gain a trifecta in New Jersey this year. To hold their trifecta, Democrats would need to hold their majority in the state Assembly while Republicans would need to gain a majority to break the Democratic trifecta.
 
Virginia has been under divided government since Mark Warner (D) won the 2001 gubernatorial election. This year, all 140 seats in the state legislature are up for election. Because the governorship is not up for election, Republicans cannot gain a trifecta in Virginia this year. In order to gain a trifecta, Democrats would need to flip both chambers, while Republicans would need to hold at least one chamber to prevent Democrats from gaining a trifecta. Democrats would need to flip two seats in each chamber to win control.
 


Harris leads Democratic candidates in Ballotpedia pageviews for second consecutive week

Each week, we report the number of pageviews received by 2020 presidential campaigns on Ballotpedia. These numbers show which candidates are getting our readers’ attention.
 
Sen. Kamala Harris’ campaign page on Ballotpedia received 3,594 pageviews for the week of July 6-13.
 
Harris’ pageview figure represents 8.7 percent of the pageviews for all Democratic candidates during the week.
 
Former Vice President Joe Biden had 7.7 percent of the candidate pageviews for the week, while Sen. Elizabeth Warren had 6.7 percent.
 
Every Democratic campaign’s pageviews decreased this week with former Rep. Eric Swalwell showing the steepest drop of 69.2 percent. Swalwell suspended his presidential campaign on July 8, 2019.
 
The top three candidates in lifetime pageviews are South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg with 86,772, entrepreneur Andrew Yang with 73,481, and Harris with 71,849.
 
On the GOP side, former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld had 8,945 pageviews to President Donald Trump’s 1,368.


Nearly half of 2019’s state legislative elections lack either a Democrat or Republican candidate

Nearly half of all state legislative seats up for election in 2019 have only one Democratic or Republican Party candidate.
 
Overall, 192 (48.7%) of the state legislative elections this year lack either a Democratic or Republican candidate. So far, every state legislative regular election does have at least one major-party candidate on the ballot.
 
By comparison, 2,017 (33.2%) of the state legislative elections in 2018 had no major-party competition. This consisted of 746 (12.3%) seats without a Democratic candidate and 1,271 (20.9%) seats without a Republican in the race.
 
Four states—Louisiana, Mississippi, New Jersey, and Virginia—are holding regularly scheduled state legislative elections this year for 538 seats. The filing deadline has passed for 394 of those seats; Louisiana’s filing deadline is set for August 8. Of those 394 seats, 91 (23.1%) do not have a Democratic candidate on the ballot, and another 101 (25.6%) do not have a Republican candidate.
 
Here is a breakdown of the stats for each state:
  • Mississippi has 174 state legislative seats on the ballot. Of those, 78 (44.8%) do not have a Democratic candidate and 55 (31.6%) do not have a Republican candidate. Overall, 133 (76.4%) of Mississippi’s state legislative elections lack a candidate from one major party. In Mississippi’s previous state legislative election in 2015, there were 116 (66.7%) seats on the ballot without major-party opposition.
  • New Jersey has 80 state legislative seats on the ballot. Of those, all of them have a Democratic candidate but three (3.8%) do not have a Republican candidate. Overall, three (3.8%) of New Jersey’s state legislative elections lack a candidate from one major party. In 2017, two (1.7%) of the state’s 120 state legislative elections lacked either a Democratic or a Republican candidate. The 2019 and 2017 percentages are both lower than the 2015 figure; in 2015, eight (10.0%) of the 80 state legislative seats on the ballot had no major-party opposition.
  • Virginia has 140 state legislative seats on the ballot. Of those, 13 (9.3%) do not have a Democratic candidate and 43 (30.7%) do not have a Republican candidate. Overall, 56 (40.0%) of Virginia’s state legislative elections lack a candidate from one major party. In 2017, only the 100 seats of the state House were up for election. Since 40 of those seats had no major-party opposition, that meant that the percentage of Virginia state legislative elections lacking either a Democratic or Republican candidate remained static at 40.0% for both cycles. In 2015, however, the figure was higher since 91 (65.0%) of the 140 state legislative seats on the ballot had no major-party opposition.
Mississippi and New Jersey have Republican and Democratic state government trifectas, respectively. Virginia has a divided government with a Democratic governor but a Republican-held state House and state Senate. A state government trifecta exists when one political party simultaneously holds the governor’s office and both state legislative chambers.
 


Last week, Kamala Harris led Democratic candidates in Ballotpedia pageviews for the first time

Each week, we report the number of pageviews received by 2020 presidential campaigns on Ballotpedia. These numbers show which candidates are getting our readers’ attention.
 
Kamala Harris’ campaign page on Ballotpedia received 4,678 pageviews for the week of June 30 – July 6. Harris’ pageview figure represents 9.1% of the pageviews for all Democratic candidates during the week. Pete Buttigieg had 7.1% of the Democratic campaign pageviews for the week while Marianne Williamson had 6.8%.
 
Every Democratic campaign’s pageviews decreased by 50% or more relative to the week of June 23-29, when the first Democratic debate took place. Harris’ 52.7% decrease was the smallest among all Democratic candidates, followed by 56.7% for Elizabeth Warren and 57.4% for Joe Biden. Marianne Williamson, who led in pageviews last week, registered the fourth-largest decline this week at 71.4%.
 
The top three candidates in lifetime pageviews are Buttigieg with 85,128, Andrew Yang with 71,129, and Harris with 68,255.
 
On the GOP side, former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld had 10,608 pageviews to President Trump’s 1,308.


Trump’s 123 judicial appointments through July 1 gives him third-most at this point since T. Roosevelt

Through July 1, 2019, President Donald Trump (R) made two Supreme Court appointments, 41 appeals court appointments, and 80 district court appointments. His 123 appointments at this point in his presidency is the third-most of the last 20 presidents dating back to Theodore Roosevelt. Only Bill Clinton (154) and George W. Bush (132) had appointed more judges by this point in their presidencies.
 
Trump’s 41 appeals court appointments are the most of the last 20 presidents at this point in their presidencies. Richard Nixon (29) and George W. Bush (26) had made the next-most appeals court appointments. The average of the last 20 presidents was 16 appointments.
 
Trump’s 80 district court appointments are fifth-most among the last 20 presidents. Bill Clinton (128), George W. Bush (105), John Kennedy (96), and Richard Nixon (85) had more at this point of their presidencies. The average across this set of presidents was 55 appointments.
 
Article III judges are appointed by the president of the United States and confirmed by the U.S. Senate in accordance with Article III of the United States Constitution.
 
Article III judges include:
  • Supreme Court of the United States: 9 justices,
  • United States court of appeals: 179 judgeships,
  • United States district court: 677 judgeships, and,
  • United States Court of International Trade: 9 judgeships.

Additional reading:

https://ballotpedia.org/Federal_judges_nominated_by_Donald_Trump



Marianne Williamson leads Democratic candidates in pageviews after first presidential debate

Each week, we report the number of pageviews received by 2020 presidential campaigns on Ballotpedia. These numbers show which candidates are getting our readers’ attention.
 
Marianne Williamson’s (D) campaign page on Ballotpedia received 12,172 pageviews during the week of June 23-29. Williamson’s pageviews represented 8.3% of the pageviews for all Democratic presidential campaigns during that period and is the highest single-week pageview count for a Democratic campaign this year. Kamala Harris (D) had 6.8% of Democratic candidate pageviews for the week, while Pete Buttigieg (D) had 6.1%.
 
Williamson’s campaign also had the largest increase in pageviews of all the campaigns last week, increasing 315.14% over her total from the previous week. Every Democratic candidate except Bernie Sanders (I), Elizabeth Warren (D), and Joe Biden (D) registered a pageview increase of 100% or more this week.
 
The top three candidates in lifetime pageviews are Buttigieg with 81,505, Andrew Yang with 68,258, and Harris with 63,577.
 
Williamson’s increase in pageviews corresponds to her appearance in the first round of Democratic presidential primary debates. On June 26, the day before Williamson appeared in the debate, she ranked seventh among all Democratic candidates in pageviews. On June 27 and 28, Williamson had more pageviews than any other Democratic candidate. From June 25 through 28, the three largest day-over-day pageview jumps were 435.12% for Tulsi Gabbard, 378.78% for John Delaney, and 293.60% for Tim Ryan. All three jumps occurred between June 25 and June 26.
 
On the GOP side, former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld had 28,425 pageviews to Donald Trump’s 3,204.


Recall efforts down by half compared to previous three years

During the first half of 2019, Ballotpedia’s coverage of recalls showed a downturn in total efforts compared to the midway points in 2016, 2017, and 2018. Through June 27, Ballotpedia covered 72 recall efforts against 115 officials. During similar time periods in the previous three years, a minimum of 134 efforts (2017) and a maximum of 189 efforts (2016) were covered. Between 178 and 265 officials were targeted for recall during the first half of those three years.
 
Despite having fewer recalls overall, 2019 did see a higher percentage of recall efforts targeting state legislators compared to the previous three years. Halfway through 2016, 2017, and 2018, state legislative recalls accounted for approximately 2% of recalls. In 2019, however, state legislators accounted for 8% of the year’s recall efforts.
 
In other ways, however, 2019 matched previous years’ recall statistics. As in 2016, 2017, and 2018, California led the way with the highest number of officials targeted for recall in 2019, and city council officials also drew the focus of more recall petitions than any other group.
 
Of the recall efforts covered in the first half of 2019, 37% were still underway as of June 27 and another 11% had recall elections scheduled. Conversely, 17% of the efforts did not make it to the ballot. Another 15% of the recall efforts had made it to the ballot and been approved, while 10% made it to the ballot but were defeated.
 


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