Election officials have scheduled the special elections for the District 16 seat in the Louisiana House of Representatives and the District 27 seat in the Louisiana State Senate for Nov. 13. The seats became vacant after Frederick D. Jones (D) resigned on July 16 after his election to a Louisiana District Court judgeship, and Ronnie Johns (R) resigned to become chairman of the Louisiana State Gaming Control Board. The primaries are on Oct. 9, and the filing deadline is on July 30.
Initiative to repeal Michigan law granting governor emergency powers heads to state legislature
The Michigan State Legislature approved the indirect initiative that repealed the Emergency Powers of Governor Act. On July 15, 2021, the Michigan State Senate voted 20-15 to approve the initiated measure. Senate Republicans voted to pass the initiated measure, and Senate Democrats voted against the proposal. On July 21, 2021, the Michigan House of Representatives voted 60-48 to approve the initiated measure. House Republicans, along with four House Democrats, supported the proposal. The remaining 48 House Democrats opposed the initiated measure. The governor cannot veto the legislature’s approval of an indirect citizen-initiated measure.
Louisiana House of Representatives District 102 special election set for Nov. 13
Election officials have scheduled a special election for the District 102 seat in the Louisiana House of Representatives for Nov. 13. The seat became vacant after former incumbent Gary Carter Jr. (D) was elected to the state Senate on June 12. The primary is on Oct. 9, and the filing deadline is on July 16.
Connecticut State Senate District 36 special election set for Aug. 17
Pennsylvania House of Representatives District 113 special election set for Nov. 2
Election officials have scheduled a special election for the District 113 seat in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives for Nov. 2, 2021. The seat became vacant after Martin Flynn (D) was elected to the state Senate on May 18. There is no primary, and candidates will be nominated directly by political parties.
Georgia House of Representatives District 34, District 156 special elections set for June 15
Election officials have scheduled special elections for the District 34 and District 156 seats in the Georgia House of Representatives for June 15, 2021. The District 34 seat became vacant after Bert Reeves (R) resigned on April 30 to become Georgia Institute of Technology’s vice president of university relations. The District 156 seat became vacant after Greg Morris (R) was appointed to the Georgia State Transportation Board on March 25. There are no party primaries. If no candidate receives a majority of the special election vote, runoff elections will be held on July 13. The filing deadline is on May 7.
California State Assembly District 18 special election set for Aug. 31
Louisiana State Senate District 7 special election set for July 10
Election officials have scheduled a special election for the District 7 seat in the Louisiana State Senate for July 10, 2021. The seat became vacant after Troy Carter (D) was elected to the U.S. House to represent Louisiana’s 2nd Congressional District on April 24. The primary is on June 12, and the filing deadline is on May 7.
Final executive clemency update of Trump presidency
The U.S. Constitution, in Article II, Section 2, grants the president the power of executive clemency. Executive clemency includes the power to pardon, in which the president overturns a federal conviction and restores “an individual to the state of innocence that existed before the conviction.” From 2017-2021, Donald Trump (R) issued 143 pardons and 94 commutations. That averages out to about 36 pardons per year and 24 commutations per year.
Trump’s 143 total pardons are the most by a one-term president since Jimmy Carter (D), who issued 534 total pardons. His 36 average annual pardons are the most of any president since Bill Clinton (D).
Trump issued the second-most commutations since Lyndon Johnson (D), behind Barack Obama who issues 1,715 commutations. Trump’s average annual commutations issued are also second-most since Johnson.
Since 1902, presidents have issued 14,333 pardons (about 120 per year) and 6,641 commutations (about 56 per year). Democratic presidents issued 8,393 pardons and 4,103 commutations, while Republican presidents issued 5,940 pardons and 2,538 commutations. The president to issue the most pardons in that span was Franklin Roosevelt (2,819) and the president to issue the most commutations in that span was Obama (1,715).
Democrats, Republicans each defending eight vulnerable trifectas this year
Sixteen state trifectas are vulnerable in 2020, according to Ballotpedia’s trifecta vulnerability rating system. Both major parties will be defending eight trifectas.
A state government trifecta occurs when one party holds the governorship and majorities in both chambers of the state legislature. There are currently 21 Republican trifectas and 15 Democratic trifectas. The remaining 14 states have divided governments.
Ballotpedia calculates the chances of trifectas breaking and forming by assessing the chances of each individual component changing control. We assess gubernatorial races with ratings from The Cook Political Report, Inside Elections, and Larry Sabato’s Crystal Ball. We assess state legislatures according to the absolute number of seats up for election and the proportion of seats that would need to flip for partisan control to change. Both chambers in a state’s legislature are evaluated individually.
Ballotpedia classifies the Democratic trifectas in five states as moderately vulnerable—Colorado, Connecticut, Maine, Nevada, and Oregon. Three Democratic trifectas—Delaware, Illinois, and New Mexico—are considered somewhat vulnerable.
The Republican trifecta in Florida is the only trifecta Ballotpedia rated as highly vulnerable this year. Four Republican trifectas—in Arizona, Georgia, Iowa, and West Virginia are classified as moderately vulnerable. The Republican trifectas in Ohio, South Carolina, and Texas are somewhat vulnerable.
Ballotpedia also assessed the chances of new trifectas forming in states that are currently under divided government. States that qualified as a possible Democratic trifecta pickup according to our methodology are Minnesota, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, while Republicans have pickup chances in Alaska and New Hampshire. In Montana and North Carolina, both parties qualify for a pickup opportunity.
For more details and the full report, click here: