The Hill's Campaign Report: The political heavyweights in Tuesday's primary fights

The Hill's Campaign Report: The political heavyweights in Tuesday's primary fights
© Greg Nash

Welcome to The Hill’s Campaign Report, your daily rundown on all the latest news in the 2020 presidential, Senate and House races. Did someone forward this to you? Click here to subscribe.

We’re Julia Manchester, Max Greenwood and Jonathan Easley. Here’s what we’re watching today on the campaign trail. 

 

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LEADING THE DAY: 

Two political giants are headed for a tougher-than-expected primary night. 

In Colorado, former Gov. John HickenlooperJohn HickenlooperDemocrats seek to tie GOP candidates to Trump, DeVos Senate outlook slides for GOP The Hill's Campaign Report: Colorado, Utah primary results bring upsets, intrigue MORE is facing off against former state House Speaker Andrew Romanoff in the Democratic nominating contest to take on Sen. Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerDemocrats seek to tie GOP candidates to Trump, DeVos Senate GOP hedges on attending Trump's convention amid coronavirus uptick Finger-pointing, gridlock spark frustration in Senate MORE (R-Colo.) in November. Hickenlooper was persuaded to enter the Senate race after ending his bid for the Democratic presidential nomination and immediately became the candidate to beat.

But a series of gaffes and an ethics controversy put him in the crosshairs of Romanoff and Republicans, who have attacked him relentlessly as a flawed and ethically compromised choice for the Senate seat. He’s still favored to win, and recent polling shows him with a commanding double-digit lead over Romanoff. Still, an upset in the primary fight would send shock waves through the political world by dealing a crushing defeat to a candidate whom Democratic leaders have touted as one of their top Senate recruits.

In Utah, another former governor, Jon Huntsman, is looking to fend off a challenge from Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox in the state’s Republican gubernatorial primary. Huntsman is a political heavyweight in Utah, where he served as governor from 2005 until 2009, when he left to serve as ambassador to China under the Obama administration. Most recently, he served as President TrumpDonald John TrumpDeSantis on Florida schools reopening: 'If you can do Walmart,' then 'we absolutely can do schools' NYT editorial board calls for the reopening of schools with help from federal government's 'checkbook' Mueller pens WaPo op-ed: Roger Stone 'remains a convicted felon, and rightly so' MORE’s ambassador to Russia. 

Despite his long résumé of public service and near-universal name ID in Utah, Huntsman is running neck and neck with Cox, with one recent poll showing the two candidates statistically tied. Cox has also been endorsed by Utah’s current Gov. Gary Herbert (R) and is in the unique position of heading up the state’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, giving him crucial leadership credentials in a crisis situation. 

The Colorado Senate primary and Utah gubernatorial primary aren’t the only contests in the spotlight on Tuesday. A crowded field of Republicans are vying for the chance to take on Rep. Kendra HornKendra Suzanne HornModerate House Democrats introduce bill aimed at stopping China from exploiting coronavirus pandemic House panel votes against curtailing Insurrection Act powers after heated debate Terry Neese, Stephanie Bice head to Oklahoma GOP runoff MORE (D) in Oklahoma’s 5th District, though that primary appears likely to go to a runoff scheduled for August. There’s also a Republican primary in Utah’s 4th District to choose a general election challenger for Rep. Ben McAdams (D), who only narrowly edged out former Rep. Mia LoveLudmya (Mia) LoveFormer NFL player Burgess Owens wins Utah GOP primary The Hill's Campaign Report: The political heavyweights in Tuesday's primary fights The biggest political upsets of the decade MORE (R) in 2018 and is likely to face a competitive reelection.

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Check back with The Hill tonight for more primary coverage as it unfolds. 

--Max Greenwood

READ MORE:

Max Greenwood: Hickenlooper seeks to shake ethics woes in Tuesday primary

 

FROM THE TRAIL:

Joe BidenJoe BidenDonald Trump Jr. to self-publish book 'Liberal Privilege' before GOP convention Tom Price: Here's how we can obtain more affordable care The Memo: Democrats feel rising tide in Florida MORE slammed President Trump over his handling of the coronavirus pandemic on Tuesday as a number of southern states see cases skyrocket. "We need real plans, real guidelines with uniform nationwide standards to help us chart our economic reopening," the former vice president told reporters during an address in Wilmington, Del. Julia Manchester reports.

Democrats are pushing the Biden campaign to expand their map ahead of November in an effort to give the former vice president more paths to victory. This comes as a number of polls show Biden leading in states, like Texas and Georgia, where Republicans have historically had an advantage. The Hill’s Amie Parnes reports.

The Republican National Committee said that its convention in August will fully comply with health regulations in Jacksonville, Fla. A spokesperson said organizers are planning to take health precautions including conducting temperature checks, making available personal protective equipment, “aggressive” sanitizing protocols and available COVID-19 testing. The Hill’s Rebecca Klar reports.

 

CONGRESS AND THE STATES

Former Marine combat pilot Amy McGrath fended off a challenge from progressive state Rep. Charles Booker in the Democratic Senate primary in Kentucky, overcoming an unexpectedly tough nominating contest to take on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellHillicon Valley: Facebook considers political ad ban | Senators raise concerns over civil rights audit | Amazon reverses on telling workers to delete TikTok Ernst: Renaming Confederate bases is the 'right thing to do' despite 'heck' from GOP Advocacy groups pressure Senate to reconvene and boost election funding MORE (R-Ky.) in November. The results came a full week after primary day in Kentucky, with a high volume of absentee ballots holding up the counting process. The Hill’s Max Greenwood reports.

Marine veteran and former police officer Josh Hicks won the Democratic primary in Kentucky's 6th District on Tuesday, setting him up to face off against Rep. Andy BarrAndy BarrThe Hill's Campaign Report: The political heavyweights in Tuesday's primary fights Democrat Josh Hicks wins Kentucky primary to challenge Andy Barr McGrath fends off Booker to win Kentucky Senate primary MORE (R-Ky.) in November. The Hill’s Abigail Mihaly reports.



POLL WATCH:

USA TODAY/SUFFOLK – NATIONAL PRESIDENTIAL

Biden: 53%

Trump: 41%

SIENA COLLEGE – NEW YORK PRESIDENTIAL

Biden: 57%

Trump: 32%

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GARIN-HART-YANG RESEARCH GROUP – MISSOURI PRESIDENTIAL

Biden: 48%

Trump: 46%

 

MONEY WATCH:

South Carolina's Democratic Senate candidate Jaime Harrison released a new ad on Tuesday hitting back at his opponent, incumbent South Carolina Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamRomney blasts Trump's Stone commutation: 'Historic corruption' Lincoln Project offers list of GOP senators who 'protect' Trump in new ad The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Trump backs another T stimulus, urges governors to reopen schools MORE (R). The ad, a six-figure TV and digital spot set to debut Tuesday in all four South Carolina media markets, is the first negative ad of Harris’s general election bid. Max Greenwood reports.



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MARK YOUR CALENDARS:

June 30:

Colorado primaries

Oklahoma primaries

Utah primaries

 

July 7:

New Jersey primaries

Delaware primaries

 

July 11:

Louisiana primaries

 

July 14:

Alabama primary runoffs

Texas primary runoffs

Maine primaries

 

Aug. 4:

Arizona primaries

Kansas primaries

Michigan primaries

Missouri primaries

Washington primaries

 

Aug. 11:

Connecticut primaries

Minnesota primaries

Vermont primaries

Wisconsin primaries

Georgia primary runoffs

 

Aug. 18:

Alaska primaries

Florida primaries

Wyoming primaries

 

Aug. 17-20:

Democratic National Convention

 

Aug. 24-27:

Republican National Convention

 

Sept. 1:

Massachusetts primaries

 

Sept. 8:

New Hampshire primaries

Rhode Island primaries

 

Sept. 15:

Delaware primaries

 

Sept. 29:

First presidential debate

 

Oct. 7:

Vice presidential debate

 

Oct. 15:

Second presidential debate

 

Oct. 22:

Third presidential debate