Primary Day: What Races to Watch
Summer is starting to come to and end, and that means….MORE PRIMARIES! CNN has a great rundown of who is participating and the key races, but I thought I’d add a little extra myself:
Alaska: CNN is focused on the Republican nomination for Senate, with another Sarah Palin/Tea Party candidate running to take out sitting Sen. Lisa Murkowski. Having seen Palin candidates overwhelmingly perform in many of the most recent primaries, I’m more interested in two things in the state: the Republican endorsement for governor, and Proposition 2. Sean Parnell, who took over as governor when Sarah Palin resigned, has two challengers in the primary, and made a lot of waves when he refused to take federal funds and expand Denali Kidcare, the Alaska version of health care for poor women and children. Could that move come back to haunt him?
Primary voters are also giving their two cents on an amendment to force a parental notification law in the state, forcing teens who need an abortion to tell their parents and then wait an additional 48 hours, or try to obtain onerous judicial bypass.
Arizona: Surprisingly, the state has more going on than just picking fights with immigrants. Sen. John McCain probably assumed that being his party’s nominee for president would at least make his endorsement for senate a given. But talk show host JD Hayworth is actually giving him a race to contend with, and calling him “not a true conservative” to boot. Surprisingly, no one is accusing Hayworth of questioning McCain’s patriotism like they did repeatedly during the presidential campaign if you dared to criticize McCain’s policies
Also, there appears to be a 10 way Republican race for Congress happening, making it the most crowded scene since the California governor’s recall race. Dan Quayle’s son is in the line up, but Gary Coleman and porn stars are not.
Florida: The Democrats will be chosing a senate candidate, and then the real campaign starts tomorrow, when the three way race with the now Independent Charlie Crist and Tea Party-backed Mark Rubio kicks into full swing. Either Jeff Greene or Kendrick Meeks will be fighting Crist for the more moderate voters of the state, as Crist tries to continue his slide to the left that was epitomized with his controversial veto of the mandatory ultrasound bill passed by state legislature this year.
For Republicans, the big fight will be between Rick Scott and Bill McCollum, both vying for the party’s endorsement for governor. Among other things, Scott has been campaigning on his anti-choice credentials, including touting a case where his hospital overruled parents who did not want life-saving measures performed on their dangerously premature baby. The land of Terri Schiavo should love him.
Oklahoma: Oklahoma already made its big news with its gubernatorial primary, which ensured that whichever party wins the governor’s mansion, the state will be run by a woman. But three other races to watch today, with a three congressional endorsements for the Republicans all to be decided tonight.
Vermont: Vermont has five Democrats all running for governor. To which Arizona Republicans say “Five? Is that all? Do you want us to send you Quayle?”
We’ll keep an eye on results and update you with winners and losers tomorrow.