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Tom Cotton wins uncontested GOP Senate primary

Tom Cotton wins uncontested GOP Senate primary
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Sen. Tom CottonTom Bryant CottonTim Scott sparks buzz in crowded field of White House hopefuls Opposition to refugees echoes one of America's most shameful moments White House defends CDC outreach to teachers union MORE (R-Ark.) won his uncontested GOP Senate primary in Arkansas on Tuesday, paving the way for his reelection in November.

Cotton faced no challengers in Tuesday's contest. He now faces one libertarian candidate and a progressive activist who has declared an independent bid in the November general election.

The state Democratic Party, though, was unable to field a candidate for Tuesday's primaries or the general election this fall after Josh Mahony, the only candidate to file for the seat as a Democrat, dropped out after the state's filing deadline.

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State law forbids a party from replacing a candidate for simply dropping out of the race for reasons other than filing for a different seat, dying, becoming ill or leaving the state.

“After exhaustive and careful examination with our legal counsel and our party leaders and without additional information from Mr. Mahony, the Democratic Party of Arkansas will not be able to field a candidate for United States Senate,” the state's Democratic Party chairman, John Gray, said in November.

“The narrow legal window to replace Mr. Mahony as our nominee would require evidence that has not been provided to us publicly or privately. But Arkansas Democrats aren’t discouraged. There are top tier candidates in competitive state legislative and congressional races all across the state. Voters are ready to make a difference and make Arkansas a better place,” he added at the time.