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Live coverage: Pennsylvania GOP Senate primary a nail-biter

Signs point the way for voters
AP Photo/Keith Srakocic
Signs point the way for voters to cast their ballots at the polling location for the Pennsylvania primary election, Tuesday, May 17, 2022, in Harmony, Pa.

Five states are holding primary elections today, including marquee contests in Pennsylvania, where Democratic and GOP voters will choose their nominees for an open Senate seat and key governor’s mansion.

North Carolina, Oregon, Idaho and Kentucky are also holding closely watched House, Senate and gubernatorial primaries.

Tuesday’s results will be yet another test of former President Trump’s sway in the Republican Party. He has endorsed in Pennsylvania and North Carolina’s GOP Senate primaries and in Idaho and Pennsylvania’s GOP gubernatorial contests.

They will also be another chance for progressives to make their mark after a somewhat lackluster start to the primary season.

Click here for live results from all five states.

And follow The Hill’s live coverage below:

Pennsylvania GOP Senate primary remains too close to call

11:59 p.m.

With the vast majority of votes counted, the Republican Senate primary in Pennsylvania is shaping up to be a nail-biter as leading candidates Dave McCormick and Mehmet Oz by only a couple thousand votes.

Both candidates said late Tuesday night that the results were not likely to come in this morning.

Bo Hines wins GOP nomination for North Carolina House seat

11:38 p.m.

Former college football player Bo Hines is projected to win the Republican nomination to represent North Carolina’s 13th Congressional District on Tuesday, beating out a crowded field of rivals with the help of former President Trump’s endorsement.

The Associated Press called the race for Hines at 11:32 p.m.

Read more here.

— Max Greenwood

Cawthorn concedes in North Carolina House GOP primary

10:31 p.m.

Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-N.C.) has conceded to his primary rival, state Sen. Chuck Edwards, in the primary, marking the end of a brief yet controversial tenure in the House that earned him critics on both sides of the aisle.

Cawthorn’s campaign confirmed that the lawmaker had conceded to Edwards. The Associated Press has yet to call the race.

Heading into the Tuesday primary, Cawthorn faced a crowded field of Republican rivals, though he remained the favorite to clinch the nomination in North Carolina’s 11th Congressional District. 

But the many controversies and missteps that haunted Cawthorn’s reelection bid appeared to catch up to him. 

Read more here.

— Max Greenwood

Mastriano wins Pennsylvania GOP governor primary

9:56 p.m.

Pennsylvania state Sen. Doug Mastriano was projected to win the state’s GOP gubernatorial primary Tuesday despite a flagging effort from some Republicans to block him from the nomination. 

The Associated Press called the race at 9:51 p.m. ET.

Mastriano defeated a crowded field of other gubernatorial candidates, including former Rep. Lou Barletta, his main primary rival, and had a healthy polling lead during the weeks leading into the primary. 

Mastriano is a staunch hardliner in the GOP and has centered much of his campaign around the unsubstantiated claims of widespread voter fraud in 2020. He’s also supported outlawing abortion without any exceptions and rolling back privacy protections for people who contract COVID-19. 

The state senator scored a surprise endorsement from former President Trump over the weekend, helping inject a late jolt into Mastriano’s bid. 

He will face Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro (D) in the general election.

Read more here.

— Tal Axelrod

Fetterman wins Pennsylvania Democratic Senate primary

8:57 p.m.

Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman on Tuesday was projected to win the state’s Democratic Senate primary, overcoming a high-profile challenge from Rep. Conor Lamb in the race to fill retiring Sen. Pat Toomey’s (R) open seat. 

Fetterman, who also bested state Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta, held a consistent double-digit polling lead for much of the primary. 

Read more here.

— Tal Axelrod

Shapiro skates to Democratic governor’s nod in Pennsylvania

8:27 p.m.

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro was projected to skate to victory in the state’s Democratic gubernatorial primary after running virtually unopposed. 

The Associated Press called the race at around 8:17 p.m. ET.

Democrats coalesced around Shapiro early in the primary process, and he’s since been able to stock up a beefy war chest to prepare for a contentious general election. 

Read more here.

— Tal Axelrod

Polls close in Pennsylvania 

8 p.m.

Polls are closed in Pennsylvania as the state hosts a slate of marquee midterm primary contests. 

Pennsylvania’s GOP Senate primary will determine the Republican nominee who gets the chance to run for retiring Sen. Pat Toomey’s (R) open seat. That race appears to be a tight contest among celebrity surgeon Mehmet Oz, conservative commentator Kathy Barnette and former hedge fund manager Dave McCormick. 

The contest had largely been one between McCormick and Oz, who has Trump’s endorsement. But Barnette surged in the polls in the final weeks of the primary as the two frontrunners savaged each other in attack ads. 

Republican nail biting has intensified over the race, with some sounding the alarm that Barnette, who has made Islamophobic and homophobic remarks and has been cagey about parts of her biography, may not be competitive in a statewide general election. 

Meanwhile, Lt. Gov. John Fetterman is the overwhelming favorite to win the Democratic nomination despite suffering a stroke on Friday. He has held a consistent double-digit polling lead over his main rivals, Rep. Conor Lamb and state Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta, a buffer that is expected to help blunt any political fallout from the stroke. 

In the GOP gubernatorial race, state Sen. Doug Mastriano is the Republican frontrunner, running up a large polling lead and scoring a surprise endorsement from Trump over the weekend. However, Republicans also worry about Mastriano’s electability after he centered much of his campaign around unfounded claims of voter fraud in 2020 and tied himself to the QAnon conspiracy theory. 

State Attorney General Josh Shapiro is running unopposed in the Democratic primary. 

— Tal Axelrod

Trump-backed Ted Budd wins North Carolina GOP Senate primary

7:51 p.m.

Rep. Ted Budd (R-N.C.) clinched the Republican Senate nomination in North Carolina on Tuesday, overcoming a challenge from former Gov. Pat McCrory and handing former President Donald Trump a major win in a critical battleground state.

The Associated Press called the race shortly before 7:50 p.m. ET.

Trump endorsed Budd, a three-term congressman, last summer in a move that came as a surprise to many Republicans. That support kicked off a steady climb in the polls for Budd, who managed to galvanize the support of North Carolina GOP voters in recent months and emerge as the primary’s frontrunner.

He will go on to face Democrat Cheri Beasley, a former state Supreme Court justice.

Read more here.

— Max Greenwood

Polls close in North Carolina 

7:30 p.m.

Polls have closed in North Carolina, which is home to a number of competitive races.

The state’s GOP Senate primary features a pitched battle among Rep. Ted Budd, who has former President Trump’s support, former Gov. Pat McCrory and former Rep. Mark Walker.  

McCrory, who boasts broad name recognition, started the race as the early frontrunner and had a hefty polling lead for weeks. However, Budd in recent weeks was boosted by upwards of $15 million in ad spending by the anti-tax Club for Growth and continued support from the former president, ending up with a double-digit polling lead of his own. 

On the Democratic side, former state Supreme Court Justice Cheri Beasley is anticipated to coast to victory in the Senate primary. 

Meanwhile, Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R), who also has Trump’s support, is fighting to keep his seat against a slew of primary challengers, including state Sen. Chuck Edwards (R). 

Cawthorn was first elected in 2020 and became a favorite of the GOP’s hardline flank. However, he’s faced a wave of pushback over comments suggesting other Republican lawmakers invited him to cocaine-fueled orgies, driving with an expired license, trying to bring a loaded gun through airport security twice allegations of insider trading and more. 

— Tal Axelrod

Paul, Booker win Kentucky Senate primaries

7:23 p.m.

Kentucky’s Senate race is set, with Sen. Rand Paul and former state Rep. Charles Booker projected to win the GOP and Democratic primaries, respectively.

Paul is anticipated to have the advantage in a red state during a year that is anticipated to favor the GOP.

Booker was seen as a rising star in 2020 when he waged a progressive campaign to challenge Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.), a top Democratic boogeyman. However, he lost in the primary that year to Amy McGrath, a former House candidate who drew more establishment support.

Despite raising gobs of money, McGrath ended up losing the general election by 20 points.

— Tal Axelrod

Catch up before the polls close

6:30 p.m.

Five things to watch in North Carolina, Pennsylvania primaries

Fetterman stroke throws curve into Pennsylvania primary

Seven primary races to watch on Tuesday

GOP sounds alarm in Pennsylvania as hard-line candidates rise

Tags Dave McCormick Idaho primaries John Fetterman Josh Shapiro Kentucky Kentucky primaries Mehmet Oz North Carolina North Carolina primaries Oregon Oregon primaries Pat Toomey Pennsylvania Pennsylvania primaries primaries Trump

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