FACTBOX-Five U.S. midterm primaries to watch in Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Idaho
Ted Budd The contest to replace retiring Republican Senator Richard Burr in North Carolina pits former Governor Pat McCrory, a fiscally conservative standard-bearer of the Tea Party era, against congressman Ted Budd, a member of the House who voted against certifying Trump's 2020 election defeat.
Voters in Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Idaho and Kentucky hold nominating primaries on Tuesday in which voters will pick their parties' candidates for the U.S. Congress and other offices, helping to shape the field for the Nov. 8 midterm elections.
The battle for the Republican U.S. Senate nomination in Pennsylvania has heated up in its final week. It features Mehmet Oz, a television wellness celebrity backed by former President Donald Trump, running against David McCormick, a wealthy former hedge fund CEO. Adding to the complexity, conservative commentator Kathy Barnette has put in a strong closing performance and the three candidates were virtually tied in a recent public opinion poll.
John Fetterman vs. Conor Lamb With incumbent Republican Senator Patrick Toomey retiring, Pennsylvania represents one of the best opportunities for Democrats to add to their razor-thin Senate majority, though President Joe Biden's low approval ratings could make that difficult.
Democratic voters will choose between John Fetterman, a progressive who has sought to burnish his working-class bona fides as lieutenant governor, and congressman Conor Lamb, a centrist who currently represents a suburban Pittsburgh district in the House of Representatives. State legislator Malcolm Kenyatta could also be a factor after challenging Fetterman's record on racial issues in a recent debate. Polls show Fetterman in the lead. Fetterman said on Sunday he had suffered a stroke but was on his "way to a full recovery."
Pat McCrory vs. Ted Budd The contest to replace retiring Republican Senator Richard Burr in North Carolina pits former Governor Pat McCrory, a fiscally conservative standard-bearer of the Tea Party era, against congressman Ted Budd, a member of the House who voted against certifying Trump's 2020 election defeat. Trump has endorsed Budd and several opinion polls have shown him leading McCrory and 12 other candidates.
If no candidate receives 30%, a runoff will take place on July 26. The winner of this nominating contest will likely face Democrat Cheri Beasley, a Black woman who formerly served as chief justice of the state Supreme Court. Analysts have said the race could be competitive in November, though Republicans are favored.
Madison Cawthorn vs. Chuck Edwards Republican congressman Madison Cawthorn of North Carolina has generated controversy since taking office in January 2021. He has been rebuked by his fellow Republicans for calling Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy a "thug" and for saying that he has witnessed cocaine use and been invited to orgies in Washington. He also has drawn criticism over a naked video, has faced accusations of sexual harassment and has been stopped twice for carrying firearms into airports.
State Senator Chuck Edwards leads a field of seven Republican candidates looking to unseat him. The seat, based in the mountainous western part of the state, is considered safely Republican. Brad Little vs. Janice McGeachin
Idaho Governor Brad Little is facing a Republican primary challenge from Janice McGeachin, who recently spoke at a political conference hosted by a white nationalist. McGeachin, who is endorsed by Trump, has been dogging Little from the right as the state's lieutenant governor. She took the gubernatorial reins several times while Little was out of the state, issuing executive orders that banned pandemic-related mask mandates and ordering National Guard troops to the U.S.-Mexico border. Trump's endorsement of McGeachin has perplexed political observers because Little is a staunch conservative who has not had public spats with Trump.
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