Tagelections to watch

Candidate filing deadline for municipal offices in Annapolis, Maryland, is June 26

The filing deadline to run for elected office in Annapolis, Maryland, is on June 26. Prospective candidates may file for mayor and for all eight seats on the city council.

The primary is scheduled for Sept. 21, and the general election is scheduled for Nov. 2.

Ballotpedia comprehensively covers the 100 largest cities in the United States by population. Our coverage also includes mayors, city councils, and district attorneys in the 32 state capitals that are not already part of our largest cities coverage. Annapolis is the capital of Maryland.

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Virginia gubernatorial candidates seek to define themselves, one another as the general election begins

Campaigns for Terry McAuliffe (D) and Glenn Youngkin (R) in the election for Governor of Virginia released new adsshortly after the major-party nominating contests came to a close in recent weeks.

Following Youngkin’s nomination on May 10, former Gov. McAuliffe released an ad titled “Virginia Forward” where he compared Youngkin to former President Donald Trump (R), saying, “Youngkin wants to bring Trump’s extremism to Virginia.” McAuliffe went on to say he would defend policies from his administration including the expansion of Medicaid, protections for reproductive rights, and the expansion of voting rights.

After McAuliffe won the Democratic primary on June 8, Youngkin released an ad titled “Time For Change” featuring one of McAuliffe’s Democratic primary opponents, former Del. Jennifer Carroll Foy, criticizing the former governor’s tenure. At the end of the ad, Youngkin described himself as “a new kind of leader to bring a new day to Virginia.” A second ad—”A New Day”—reiterated this theme with Youngkin saying he would create jobs, improve education, and make communities more safe.

Two satellite groups—the Democratic Governors Association (DGA) and the Republican Party of Virginia (RPV)—also released ads following the nomination contests. The DGA associated Youngkin with Trump and said his main priority was, “telling the same Big Lie Trump tells about the last election and trying to restrict your right to vote in the next.” The RPV’s ad used a speech given by McAuliffe interspersed with a series of news clips from the previous eight years on topics including rates of violent crime, changes to public school curricula, and a transportation company’s decision to move out of Virginia.

A recent poll of 550 likely voters shows a close race. The poll, commissioned by CNanalytics and conducted by JMC Analytics, showed McAuliffe receiving support from 46% of respondents to Youngkin’s 42%, a difference within the poll’s ± 4.2 margin of error. The remaining 12% of the respondents were either undecided or did not respond. No third party candidates were included in the poll, though at least one candidate, Princess Blanding (I), will also appear on the general election ballot.

Every four years, the Virginia gubernatorial election is one of the first major statewide elections following the presidential election. Since 1977, the state has elected a governor from the opposite party of the president in every election except for 2013 when McAuliffe was elected governor following Barack Obama’s (D) re-election. In more recent years, Democrats have won four of the five most recent gubernatorial elections and all thirteen statewide elections in Virginia since 2012.

The gubernatorial election will determine Virginia’s trifecta status. Virginia became a Democratic trifecta in 2019 for the first time since 1994 after Democrats won majorities in the House of Delegates and the state Senate. A McAuliffe victory could continue the Democratic trifecta if Democrats also retain a majority in the House of Delegates. A Youngkin victory would make Virginia a divided government since the Democrat-controlled Senate is not holding elections this year.

Learn more about the Virginia gubernatorial election here.



Detroit to hold mayoral primary on Aug. 3

Ten candidates are running in a nonpartisan primary election for mayor of Detroit, Michigan, on Aug. 3. Media coverage has focused on incumbent Mike Duggan and challengers Anthony Adams and Tom Barrow. Kiawana Brown, Myya Jones, Jasahn Larsosa, Charleta McInnis, Danetta Simpson, Art Tyus, and Dallias Wilcoxon are also running. The top two candidates will advance to the general election on Nov. 2.

Duggan was first elected mayor in 2013 when he defeated opponent Benny Napoleon (D) 55% to 45%. In 2017, he was reelected by a margin of nearly 44 points, defeating Coleman Young II (D) 71.6% to 27.8%.

Before becoming mayor, Duggan was president and CEO of Detroit Medical Center from 2004 to 2012. He was assistant corporation counsel for Wayne County from 1985 to 1986, deputy Wayne County executive from 1987 to 2000, and Wayne County prosecutor from 2000 to 2001. Governor Gretchen Whitmer (D) and former gubernatorial candidate Abdul El-Sayed (D) have endorsed Duggan. Duggan said that, if re-elected, he would “work every day to continue to make sure every neighborhood has a future and every Detroiter has a true opportunity to achieve your dreams.”

Adams is an attorney and was deputy mayor of Detroit under former Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick (D). He was also an executive assistant to Mayor Coleman Young, was a board member and general counsel for Detroit Public Schools, and was interim director of the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department. Adams said his “extensive leadership experience, unwavering commitment, and enlightened skill-set uniquely position him to move the city of Detroit forward” and he is “committed to serving the ordinary people of Detroit and not Special Interest Groups.”

Barrow is a practicing certified public accountant, led the civic group Citizens for Detroit’s Future, and was an advocate for changes to the municipal election system. This is Barrow’s fifth mayoral run and the second time he has competed against Duggan. In his four previous campaigns, Barrow advanced from the primary to the general election three times: in 1985, 1989, and 2009. Barrow said he would run a campaign based on local pride: “Detroit is in my DNA. Detroit is a city I love and respect deeply. People know that I care, that I will look out for them and will protect them and not allow them to be misused.”

Economic development and public safety have been major issues in the race. Duggan said he would work with the city council and manufacturers to bring more high-paying jobs into the city. Adams said he would support a universal basic income plan and an income-based water billing system and emphasized early intervention as a means to reduce crime. Barrow also supported a water affordability program for Detroit residents and said neighborhood revitalization projects should focus on a broader area and not just downtown.

The city of Detroit uses a strong mayor and city council system. In this form of municipal government, the city council serves as the city’s primary legislative body and the mayor serves as the city’s chief executive. The mayor is responsible for proposing a budget, signing legislation into law, appointing departmental directors and committee members and overseeing the city’s day-to-day operations. The mayor also possesses veto powers, though the Detroit city charter establishes procedures whereby city council may override mayoral vetoes under certain circumstances.

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New York City primaries for mayor, city comptroller to be held on June 22

Primaries for the mayor and comptroller of New York City will be held on Tuesday, June 22. The winners will advance to the general election on November 2, 2021.

Thirteen Democrats and two Republicans are running in the primaries for mayor of New York City. Incumbent Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) is not running for re-election due to term limits.

The primary election will feature the first use of ranked-choice voting (RCV) for a mayoral primary in the city’s history. Voters will be able to rank up to five candidates on their ballot in order of preference.

The following six Democratic candidates have received the most media attention and noteworthy endorsements:

• Eric Adams, Brooklyn borough president

• Kathryn Garcia, former New York City sanitation commissioner

• Raymond McGuire, former Wall Street executive

• Scott Stringer, New York City comptroller

• Maya Wiley, former mayoral counsel

• Andrew Yang, entrepreneur

The top issues in this race are crime, policing, affordable housing, jobs, and healthcare.

New York State Federation of Taxi Drivers founder Fernando Mateo and Guardian Angels founder Curtis Sliwa are running in the Republican primary.

De Blasio was first elected in 2013 and won re-election in 2017 with 66% of the vote. Including de Blasio, four of the previous six mayors were Democrats.

The Democratic primary for New York City comptroller is also being held on June 22. Ten candidates are running for the office, whose duties include performing audits of city agencies and managing five public pension funds. As of March 2021, the funds totaled $253 billion in assets.

The following seven candidates are leading in endorsements and fundraising:

• Brian Benjamin, state senator

• Michelle Caruso-Cabrera, former CNBC financial analyst

• Zachary Iscol, former Marine and nonprofit founder

• Corey Johnson, New York City Council speaker

• Brad Lander, New York City Council member

• Kevin Parker, state senator

• David Weprin, state assemblyman

The Republican primary was canceled, and Daby Carreras advanced as the Republican nominee for New York City comptroller.

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Reviewing noteworthy endorsers’ picks for New York City mayor, comptroller

New York City holds primaries for mayor, comptroller, public advocate, five borough presidents, and 51 city council seats on June 22. As part of our in-depth coverage of the mayoral and comptroller elections, Ballotpedia has tracked Democratic primary endorsements from major local papers, members of Congress, and influential unions and groups. 

Below, we highlight several endorsers’ picks in both the mayoral and comptroller primaries. We include endorsers from whom we found endorsements in both races. Endorsed mayoral candidates are listed first after the endorser, and endorsed comptroller candidates are listed second.

Ten of 23 endorsers listed below had unique endorsement pairings. Six backed Maya Wiley for mayor and Brad Lander for comptroller. Three endorsed Wiley for mayor and Corey Johnson for comptroller. Two endorsed Scott Stringer for mayor and Lander for comptroller. And two backed Stringer and Johnson.

Local papers

New York Post: Eric Adams, Zach Iscol

The New York Times: Kathryn Garcia, Brad Lander

New York Daily News:Kathryn Garcia, David Weprin

Members of Congress

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.): Maya Wiley, Brad Lander

Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-N.Y.): Maya Wiley, Kevin Parker

Rep. Adriano Espaillat (D-N.Y.): Eric Adams, Brian Benjamin

Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-N.Y.): Ray McGuire, David Weprin 

Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.):  Scott Stringer, Brad Lander

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.): Maya Wiley, Brad Lander 

Rep. Katie Porter (D-Calif.): Maya Wiley, Brad Lander 

Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-N.Y.): Eric Adams, David Weprin   

Rep. Ritchie Torres (D-N.Y.): Andrew Yang, Corey Johnson

Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D-N.Y.): Maya Wiley, Brad Lander 

Unions

1199 SEIU: Maya Wiley, Corey Johnson

LiUNA! NY: Scott Stringer, Corey Johnson

New York Hotel and Motel Trades Council: Eric Adams, Corey Johnson

New York State Nurses Association: Maya Wiley, Corey Johnson

United Federation of Teachers: Scott Stringer, Corey Johnson

Groups

New York Working Families Party: Maya Wiley, Brad Lander

New York League of Conservation Voters: Kathryn Garcia, Corey Johnson

Stonewall Democrats of NYC: Scott Stringer, Brad Lander

Tenants PAC: Maya Wiley, Corey Johnson

New York Progressive Action Network: Maya Wiley, Brad Lander

Note: Many state legislators, local officials, and other groups and unions have issued endorsements in the races and are not included above. See our race coverage for more endorsements as well as links to endorsement lists on candidates’ campaign websites.

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Voters in Alabama state House district to decide Democratic primary runoff on June 22

A special Democratic primary runoff will be held on June 22 for District 78 in the Alabama House of Representatives. Kenyatté Hassell and Donald Williams advanced to the Democratic primary runoff after defeating Terance Dawson and Roderick Thornton in the May 25 primary. The winner of the runoff will face Loretta Grant (R) in the special election on Sept. 7. The winner of the special election will serve until November 2022.

The special election was called after Kirk Hatcher (D) was elected to the Alabama State Senate in a special election on March 2. Hatcher served in the state House from 2018 to 2021.

Alabama has a Republican state government trifecta. A trifecta exists when one political party simultaneously holds the governor’s office and majorities in both state legislative chambers. Republicans control the state Senate by a 26-8 margin with one vacancy and the state House by a 76-27 margin with two vacancies.

As of June, 40 state legislative special elections have been scheduled for 2021 in 17 states. Between 2011 and 2020, an average of 75 special elections took place each year. Alabama held 23 state legislative special elections from 2011 to 2020.

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Special election primary to be held in Wisconsin Assembly district

A special election primary is being held on June 15 for District 37 of the Wisconsin State Assembly. Cathy Houchin, Steve Kauffeld, Nick Krueger, Jennifer Meinhardt, William Penterman, Nathan Pollnow, Jenifer Quimby, and Spencer Zimmerman are running in the Republican primary. Pete Adams is unopposed in the Democratic primary. Stephen Ratzlaff Jr. is running as an independent candidate. The general election will take place on July 13, and the winner of the special election will serve until January 2023.

The seat became vacant on April 23 after John Jagler (R) was sworn into the Wisconsin State Senate. He won a special election for state Senate District 13 on April 6. Jagler had represented District 37 since 2013. He won re-election in 2020 with 56% of the vote.

Heading into the special election, Republicans have a 60-38 majority in the Wisconsin Assembly with one vacancy. Wisconsin has a divided government, and no political party holds a state government trifecta. A trifecta exists when one political party simultaneously holds the governor’s office and majorities in both state legislative chambers.

As of June, 39 state legislative special elections have been scheduled for 2021 in 17 states. Between 2011 and 2020, an average of 75 special elections took place each year. Wisconsin held 19 state legislative special elections from 2011 to 2020.

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Early voting begins in NYC mayoral primary on June 12

Thirteen candidates are running in the Democratic primary for mayor of New York City on June 22, 2021. Early voting began on June 12.

This election features the first use of ranked-choice voting for a mayoral primary in the city’s history. Under this system, voters will be able to rank up to five candidates on their ballot in order of preference. A candidate must receive a majority of votes cast to win the election, and votes for eliminated candidates are redistributed based on the next preference on the ballot.

On June 10, five Democrats discussed gun violence, policing, legal marijuana, and historical landmarks in the final primary debate before early voting:

* Eric Adams, Brooklyn borough president

* Kathryn Garcia, former New York City Sanitation Commissioner

* Scott Stringer, New York City comptroller

* Maya Wiley, former mayoral counsel

* Andrew Yang, entrepreneur and 2020 presidential candidate

Adams led in an Emerson College poll released this week with 23% support in the first round of voting. Wiley, whose candidacy was boosted by the endorsement of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) on June 5, came in second with 17%.

Yang, Garcia, and Stringer followed with 15%, 12%, and 9% respectively. Yang received an endorsement from the Uniformed Firefighters Association last week, while Garcia was backed by Citizens Union (CU). Adams and Stringer were the second and third choices for CU.

Two candidates are running in the Republican primary: New York State Federation of Taxi Drivers founder Fernando Mateo and Guardian Angels founder Curtis Sliwa.

Incumbent Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) is not running for re-election due to term limits. De Blasio was first elected in 2013 and won re-election in 2017 with 66% of the vote. Including de Blasio, four of the previous six mayors were Democrats.



The NYC race you may not have heard about—for comptroller

On June 22nd, New York City will vote in primaries not only for mayor, but for other city offices as well, including comptroller. The comptroller performs audits of city agencies and manages five public pension funds, among other responsibilities. As of March, the pension funds totaled $253 billion in assets. The next comptroller will also be responsible for overseeing the use of federal stimulus money issued in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Ten candidates are running in the Democratic primary for a chance to succeed Scott Stringer, who is running in the Democratic primary for mayor. Republican and Conservative Party primaries were canceled as only one candidate was on the ballot in each.

Seven Democratic primary candidates have been mentioned by media outlets as leading candidates. Each has argued that their background equips them for the office. 

• Brian Benjamin, a state senator, previously worked for a housing developer and in financial management for Morgan Stanley. 

• Michelle Caruso-Cabrera was a financial analyst for CNBC. 

• Zachary Iscol served in the Marines and is a business and nonprofit founder. 

• Corey Johnson is speaker of the New York City Council. 

• Brad Lander, also a city councilman, co-founded the council’s Progressive Caucus. 

• Kevin Parker, a state senator, previously worked for investment banking firm UBS PaineWebber and as project manager for the New York State Urban Development Corporation. 

• David Weprin, a state assemblyman, previously served on the city council, where he was chair of the Finance Committee for eight years.

Ballotpedia has compiled biographical information, key messages, endorsements, and more related to the Democratic primary for comptroller. We also provide information on ranked-choice voting, which New York City is using this year for the first time. Voters will be able to rank up to five candidates on their ballots.

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Special elections to be held in two Georgia legislative districts on June 15

Image of the Georgia State Capitol in Atlanta, Georgia.

Special elections are being held on June 15 to fill vacant seats in Districts 34 and 156 in the Georgia House of Representatives. If no candidate earns a majority of the vote in the special election, the top two vote-getters will advance to a general runoff election. The runoff, if necessary, will be held on July 13. The winners of the special elections will serve until January 2023.

In the District 34 election, Sam Hensley Jr. (D), Priscilla Smith (D), David Blinkhorn (R), Devan Seabaugh (R), and Chris Neill (L) are running in the special election. The special election became necessary after Bert Reeves (R) resigned his seat on April 30 to become Georgia Institute of Technology’s vice president of university relations. Reeves served in the state House from 2015 to 2021.

In the District 156 election, Wright Gres (D), Leesa Hagan (R), and Wally Sapp (R) are running in the special election. The special election became necessary when Greg Morris (R) resigned his seat on April 13 to join the Georgia Department of Transportation’s State Transportation Board. Morris served in the state House from 1999 to 2021.

Georgia has a Republican state government trifecta. A trifecta exists when one political party simultaneously holds the governor’s office and majorities in both state legislative chambers. Republicans control the Georgia House of Representatives by a margin of 101 to 77 with two vacancies.

As of June, 39 state legislative special elections have been scheduled for 2021 in 17 states. Between 2011 and 2020, an average of 75 special elections took place each year. Pennsylvania held 44 state legislative special elections from 2011 to 2020.

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