State by State


Freshman Rep. Hank Johnson (D) will run unopposed by any major-party candidate for Georgia’s 4th congressional district seat this November.

Neither the Democratic nor Republican party registered a candidate to oppose Johnson by Friday’s deadline, according to the Georgia Secretary of State’s office. As fellow Georgia Democrats work to stave off primary opponents, the state’s July 15 Democratic primary day looks to be as relaxing for Johnson as general election day on Nov. 4.


Libertarian Party, Green Party and Independent candidates have a later deadline of Friday, June 27.

Johnson defeated Rep. Cynthia McKinney (D) in a primary in 2006 and won easily in the general election in a strongly Democratic district.

McKinney and DeKalb County CEO Vernon Jones (D) were rumored as possible primary opponents for Johnson.

McKinney is now a Green Party candidate for president, while Jones remains in the crowded primary for Sen. Saxby ChamblissClarence (Saxby) Saxby ChamblissLive coverage: Georgia Senate runoffs Trump, Biden face new head-to-head contest in Georgia Ex-GOP senator from Georgia suffers mild stroke: report MORE’s (R) seat.

— Chris Good


Special-election winner Rep. Andre Carson (D) and state Rep. Jon Elrod (R) are headed for a rematch in November after both emerged from primaries as their respective party’s nominee.

Carson, whose incumbency was tested just two months after he beat Elrod in a special election, topped a field of four well-known candidates.

Final results show Carson beating former state Health Commissioner Woody Myers 46-24. State Rep. David Orentlicher was third with 21 percent of the vote, and state Rep. Carolene Mays came in fourth with 8 percent.

Carson had the backing of national Democrats in the race, which was crucial in his ability to compete financially with Myers’s $1.7 million in self-funding.

The incumbent defeated Elrod 54-43 two months ago and the district favors Democrats, but an under-funded GOP candidate was able to take 46 percent in a 2006 challenge of Carson’s grandmother, the late Rep. Julia Carson (D). A GOPer also pulled off an upset in the Indianapolis mayor’s race last year.

In other primaries, longtime Rep. Dan Burton (R-Ind.) held off former Marion County Coroner John McGoff in a close race, 52-45, and businessman Luke Puckett won in a three-candidate GOP primary with 48 percent of the vote and will face freshman Rep. Joe DonnellyJoseph (Joe) Simon DonnellyEverybody wants Joe Manchin Centrist Democrats pose major problem for progressives Biden and Schumer face battles with left if Democrats win big MORE (D).

Puckett will attempt to regain a seat the GOP lost in 2006, as will former congressional aide Greg Goode and former Rep. Mike Sodrel. The latter two GOP candidates were uncontested and will face freshman Reps. Brad Ellsworth (D) and Baron Hill (D).

The Hill-Sodrel match-up is their fourth straight battle. Hill won the first and third, with Sodrel winning the second.

Donnelly and Ellsworth have been top targets of national Republicans, but their GOP challengers haven’t raised much money.

— Aaron Blake

New Hampshire

Anti-tax crusader Grover Norquist will show up in New Hampshire Friday to stand by as John Stephen, the state’s former health and human services secretary, signed Norquist’s “no tax increases” pledge.

Stephen is challenging former Rep. Jeb Bradley for the GOP nomination. The winner will face freshman Rep. Carol Shea-Porter (D), who narrowly defeated Bradley in the Republican-leaning Seacoast district.

 Both Stephen and Bradley have signed the pledge, but Stephen signed four months earlier, in November 2007.

Stephen, who pushed to cut his state department’s costs, has tried to run to the right of Bradley, charging him with requesting an earmark when he served in Congress. Bradley has denied the claim.

Neither Norquist nor Americans for Tax Reform, which is led by the GOP insider, has endorsed a candidate in the race, though the group’s spokesman, John Kartch, said that ATR was “very impressed with Stephen’s track record.”

Norquist has taken an active role in other House races this year. He has campaigned against Reps. Wayne Gilchrest (R-Md.) and Walter Jones (R-N.C.), who had voted for Democratic bills that included tax increases.

Gilchrest lost his primary in February, though Jones won his on Tuesday.

— Walter Alarkon

New Jersey

Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D) has agreed to two primary debates with Rep. Robert Andrews in recent days, and they will both occur less than a week before the election.

Lautenberg on Wednesday agreed to a May 29 debate on statewide radio station New Jersey 101.5 FM. On Tuesday, he agreed to a May 30 debate on public television.

Andrews’s campaign has repeatedly called for more debates between the two candidates. The two Lautenberg agreed to this week are the only ones scheduled thus far.

Andrews is battling from behind in the race, making debates an important part of his effort.

— A.B.

North Carolina

State Sen. Kay HaganKay Ruthven Hagan10 under-the-radar races to watch in November The Hill's Campaign Report: Democratic Unity Taskforce unveils party platform recommendations Democrats awash with cash in battle for Senate MORE will face Sen. Elizabeth Dole (R) after easily winning the Democratic nomination on Tuesday.

Hagan defeated businessman Jim Neal with 60 percent of the vote and is a top Democratic hope against the first-term senator. The Dole name is well-regarded in the state, but the senator recently polled under 50 percent in a head-to-head match-up with Hagan.

In other congressional primaries Tuesday, Asheville City Councilman Carl Mumpower won the GOP primary to face freshman Rep. Heath Shuler (D), and a pair of GOP incumbents withstood noteworthy primary challenges.

Mumpower topped a three-candidate field with 48 percent of the vote. His nearest competitor, former Henderson County GOP Chairman Spence Campbell, was at 42 percent.

The district is kind to Republicans, but none of the primary candidates have raised large amounts of money.

Mumpower had just $2,000 in cash on hand as of April 16.

Among incumbents, Rep. Walter Jones (R) defeated Onslow County Commissioner Joe McLaughlin 60-40; and Rep. Patrick McHenry (R) breezed past attorney Lance Sigmon 67-33 with 96 percent of precincts reporting.

Both will be heavy favorites for reelection.

Democrat Larry Kissell, the 2006 nominee who lost to Rep. Robin Hayes (R) by fewer than 400 votes, was uncontested in the primary and will again challenge Hayes.

— A.B.


Democratic Senate candidate Steve Novick raised $140,000 in April, bringing his total raised to more than $1 million, his campaign announced Wednesday.

Novick will face state Rep. Jeff MerkleyJeff MerkleyHouse-passed election bill takes aim at foreign interference Bipartisan bill would ban lawmakers from buying, selling stocks Pentagon prevented immediate response to mob, says Guard chief MORE in a hotly contested primary on May 20. The winner will face Sen. Gordon Smith (R).

Merkley, who had raised nearly $1.4 million through March 31, declined to release his pre-primary fundraising numbers Wednesday.

In the state’s open House district, former gubernatorial aide Steve Marks raised $30,000 in April, bringing his total to $56,000. He faces state Sen. Kurt Schrader in the primary for retiring Rep. Darlene Hooley’s (D) seat.

On the GOP side, business Mike Erickson added $315,000 of his own money Friday to his primary against former gubernatorial candidate Kevin Mannix, bringing Erickson’s self-funding for the primary up to more than $900,000.

Neither Schrader, Erickson nor Mannix had filed pre-primary reports as of press time.

— A.B.