New York, Florida, and Oklahoma held primaries yesterday. New York also held a special election for its 19th Congressional District. I only want to note a few races that caught my attention.
• The special election was held to fill New York’s old 19th CD in the Hudson Valley — “old” because it will disappear as of the November election. Democratic Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan faced off against Republican Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro to fill the seat vacated by Antonio Delgado upon his appointment to serve as lieutenant governor. Ryan edged out Molinaro. If Molinaro had pulled it out, I would have commented that it was a good omen. In the event, it isn’t a good omen. If anything, it’s a bad omen.
In its morning newsletter Punchbowl News points out: “No poll ever showed Ryan leading, not even the one released by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. A survey published by a progressive group right before the election had Molinaro up by eight points. Both sides poured money into the final stages of this bellwether Hudson Valley race.” I believe Ryan’s margin over Molinaro was comparable to Biden’s 2020 margin over Trump in the district. However, Molinaro did about six points better in this race than the Republican candidate did in the 2020 contest against Delgado.
Ryan also prevailed in the primary to represent the new 18th CD for a full term. Ryan will have whatever advantage accrues to his incumbency as he faces off against Republican state assemblyman Eric Schmitt. Politico covers the election here.
• Redistricting in New York created an interesting race in the redrawn 19th Congressional District (combining the Upper East Side and Upper West Side of Manhattan). The race pitted Democratic incumbents waddlin’ Jerry Nadler against catty Carolyn Maloney. Jim Geraghty took a look at the race in his NRO Morning Jolt column “Two Democrats Set Aside Years of Friendship to Destroy One Another.” This was the Iran-Iraq war through the lens of Henry Kissinger: “It’s a pity both sides [couldn’t] lose.” The New York Post covers the primary election here, Politico here.
In the event, Nadler prevailed by a margin as wide as his belt is long. After the outcome became evident last night Maloney lamented the lack of a woman to represent Manhattan. She is one sore loser. I prefer to look on the bright side. Grossly obese New Yorkers of all genders will have a congressman who “looks like” they do, as the enlightened like to say.
• New York’s redrawn 10th CD primary was competitive among Democrats. Ballotpedia profiles the district and the race here. Trump impeachment prosecutor Daniel Goldman prevailed in the splintered vote. Mondaire Jones is a Squad type “progressive.” This was another Iran-Iraq type conflict through the Kissingerian lens.
• In Florida, the heavily tanned Charlie Crist won the Democratic primary to face off against — to lose to –Governor DeSantis in November. Crist won in a landslide over Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried. Crist not only switched parties late in his political career, he adopted a new Weltanschauung. Axios covers the primary here.
• Rep. Val Demings handily won the Democratic primary and will challenge incumbent Senator Marco Rubio in November. Rubio has to be the favorite in this election. If so, I should think Demings will find a place in the Biden administration next year.
• I wrote unfavorably about Laura Loomer in the 2018 post “How to help Ilhan Omar.” Loomer called me in response and signed off by telling me how many followers she had on Twitter. I thought she was a nut who thinks in terms of attracting attention. I was surprised to see that she was challenging incumbent Florida CD 11 Rep. Daniel Webster in yesterday’s primary and even more surprised to see how close she came to prevailing.
Loomer did not go down quietly.
— Mike DeForest (@DeForestNews6) August 24, 2022
• Oklahoma Rep. Markwayne Mullin won the Oklahoma Republican primary election to serve out the unexpired portion succeed retiring incumbent James Inhofe’s term. Mullin defeated former Speaker of the Oklahoma House T.W. Shannon by a 2-1 margin. The AP covers the primary and prospective November election contest as well as other Oklahoma primary results here.
Election results via RealClearPolitics.
UPDATE: NRO has posted Neal Freeman’s worrisome column “The Florida GOP is all shook up” (behind NRO’s paywall). Amomg other things, Freeman argues that the Mar-a-Lago raid has upended the status quo to the disadvantage of DeSantis and that Demings’s prospects against Rubio are not bad.