Please check back at Noon ET for our preview of this weekend’s Texas mayoral elections and French Presidential Runoff. But in the meantime grab your Taco Bowl and enjoy the roundup…
CT-Gov: State Sen. Toni Boucher (R) is the latest Connecticut Republican to consider an entry into this crowded primary, joining Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton (R), Trumbull first selectman (Mayor) Tim Herbst (R), state Rep. Prasad Srinivasan (R) and 2014 SoS nominee Peter Lumaj (R).
FL-Gov: State House Speaker Richard Corcoran (R) will open a committee this summer to raise money for a Gov run, but won’t make a final decision until… next March. That’s an awfully lackadaisical timeline for a race that will need extreme amounts of fundraising, and sending a signal to donors that you’re still unclear about your intentions doesn’t seem like the best way to go. Corcoran will face Ag Commissioner Adam Putnam (R) in the primary if he goes ahead with a run, and a couple more minor candidates are also considering. Dems have a crowded field of decleared and potential contenders including ex-Rep. Gwen Graham (D), Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum (D), Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine (D), and trial lawyer John Morgan (D).
IA-Gov: Freshman State Sen. Nate Boulton (D), a vocal liberal, is the latest “C” list candidate to jump into the Governor’s race, joining ex-IADP chair Andy McGuire (D), State Rep. Todd Prichard (D), former state cabinet official Rich Leopold (D), and 2014 Auditor nominee Jon Neiderbach (D). Gov-designate Kim Reynolds (R) may face primary opposition from Cedar Rapids Mayor Ron Corbett (R).
NE-Gov: State Sen. Bob Krist (“R”), a moderate from the Omaha area, may challenge Gov. Pete Ricketts (R) in the 2018 primary. As the state populace generally seems to be on the side of Ricketts’ conservative agenda instead to the RINO-D coalition that seems to all too often dominate the Unicameral, Krist will likely have a tough time getting traction in a GOP primary.
MN-Gov, MN-8: State House Speaker Kurt Daudt (R) announced that he is still considering a run for Governor, while ruling out a bid for MN-8. Daudt would likely be a front-runner in the crowded GOP convention field if he entered.
PA-Gov: Ugh. As George Allen and Bob Etheridge can tell you, the only thing to do when around a tracker is ignore them and be on your best behavior. State Sen. Scott Wagner (R), who is challenging Gov. Tom Wolf (D), didn’t heed that advice when he angrily confronted a tracker working for American Bridge who was videotaping a private speech Wagner was giving on estate planning. Word to wise candidates: just don’t. Don’t protest and don’t give into those impulses no matter how justified you think they are. You will never come out looking good. Separately in this race, businessman Paul Mango (R) has made his entry into the GOP primary official. Multiple other Republicans are rumored to be considering.
CA-34: AG Xavier Becerra (D) has endorsed State Rep. Jimmy Gomez (D) as his successor. Gomez faces a runoff with zoning board member Robert Lee Ahn (D) in June, in which the former looks like the strong favorite. Gomez has coalesced most establishment support and has the Hispanic-majority nature of the district on his side, though Ahn’s Koreatown base can be high-turnout.
GA-6: Now here’s a new one. WATL-TV, Atlanta’s MyTV affiliate, has launched a 7PM newscast… specifically to find a place to air GA-6 ads. The June 20 runoff between ex-SoS Karen Handel (R) and former congressional staffer
Han Soloff Jon Osoff (D) has attracted well-beyond-saturation levels of spending.
NC-9: The FBI has closed a probe of Rep. Robert Pittenger’s (R) former business interests. Pittenger’s seat is safe but he narrowly escaped a 3-way primary last cycle with just over a third of the vote.
CA-LG: Having no real duties but a high profile, this open seat seems to be becoming quite attractive for former Dem megadonor-turned-ambassadors, as we now have two candidates fitting that profile here. Former Obama ambassador to Australia Jeff Bleich (D) is running for the open Lieutenant Governor seat, joining fellow former ambassador Eleni Kounalakis (D), State Sen. Ed Hernandez (D), and physician Asif Mahmood (D).
FL-Ag Comm: As expected, State Rep. Matt Caldwell (R) of the Fort Myers area has filed for the open Agriculture Commissioner seat, joining State Sen. Denise Grimsley (R) and former Orlando Mayoral candidate Paul Paulson (R).
ID-Supt: Local superintendent Jeff Dillon (R) is challenging incumbent Sherri Ybarra (R) in the primary for State Superintendent. Ybarra was a surprise winner in 2014 as a non-serious Some Dude, squeaking through a divided primary and narrowly winning the general on the deep-red lean of the state. Thus it seems a decent bet she could be vulnerable to a primary this year.
SC-SoS: State Rep. Joshua Putnam (R) is running for SoS, challenging four-term incumbent Mark Hammond (R). The decision is somewhat curious as Hammond has been non-controversial and South Carolina’s SoS is not a powerful office (it doesn’t oversee elections and mostly handles business and charity filings).
FL-SD-40: Ex-State Sen. Alex Diaz de la Portilla (R) is running in the special election for this vacant State Senate seat in the southwest Miami suburbs. Diaz de la Portilla represented an adjacent urban Miami district in the 2000s, and his brother Miguel (R) narrowly lost re-election to that seat last year. State Rep. Daisy Baez (D) is the only other candidate who has declared for the heavily-anti-Trump but historically Cuban-machine-R dominated district.
NYC-Mayor: State Sen. Tony Avella (D/IDC) dropped his little-noticed bid yesterday to challenge Mayor Bill DeBlasio (D) in the primary. The northeast Queens State Senator, who has a reputation as a maverick for some heterodox views and would not have energized liberals by his association with the GOP Senate caucus, had only raised $35K for his bid.
More NYC-Mayor: Across the aisle, Arby’s pitchman and former celebrity detective Bo Dietl (I) was denied in his bid to run in the GOP primary; he would have needed 3/5 borough party chairs’ support to enter as a non-party member. The GOP primary looks to now be between developer Paul Massey (R) and State Rep. Nicole Malliotakis (R). Dietl may still run in the general as an Independent.
Jackson, MS-Mayor: On Tuesday, incumbent Jackson Mayor Tony Yarber (D) came in fourth (!) in the Democratic Primary with just 5% (!). Winning a landslide victory with 55% was attorney Chokwe Lumumba Jr. (D). Lumbumba is the leftist son of Yarber’s deceased predecessor of the same name, and the relatively moderate Yarber’s rival in a 2014 Special Election. Jackson, a majority-black city with high crime and deteriorating infrastructure, has a history of turning out its mayor by large margins, as this marks the fourth consecutive regularly-scheduled election in which the incumbent was defeated.
Toledo-Mayor: Lucas County Treasurer Wade Kapsukiewicz (D) will challenge incumbent Paula Hicks-Hudson (D) for Mayor. Councilman Tom Waniewski (R) is also in the race, which will have a California-Rules Top Two primary in September.
San Francisco-Mayor ’19: State Sen. Mark Leno (D), a “moderate” (read: standard leftist moonbat instead of insane leftist moonbat) will run for SF Mayor in 2019; he is considered likely to be a front-runner to succeed termed-out incumbent Ed Lee (D).
NY-Rockland-CE: Attorney Maureen Porette (D), who seems basically “Some Dude” caliber, will run for County Executive against incumbent Ed Day (R). Porette seems to be running mostly on standard liberal platitudes, which is somewhat surprising as the main fault-line in Rockland centers on how to make peace with the county’s large Hasidim population.