Election Coverage / Politics

Setting the Stage for November: Results and Analysis of Super Tuesday

by Caroline Rayburn

Voters took to the polls earlier this week in six states to cast their ballots in the “Super Tuesday” primary elections.  In Kentucky, Arkansas, and Oregon, the stage is now officially set for the general election for the U.S. Senate – and the GOP has its sight set on taking back the Upper Chamber for control of the entire legislative branch.  A Georgia Republican runoff is all that stands in between what is sure to become another key race that could determine control of the Senate.  And for citizens of Idaho and Pennsylvania, the way has been paved for pivotal congressional races and for the right to take up residence in the governor’s mansion.


The Republican Leader of the Senate, Mitch McConnell (R-KY), fended off his Tea Party challenger, businessman Matt Bevin.  McConnell captured 60.2% of the vote to Bevin’s 35.4% and will now face Kentucky’s Secretary of State, Alison Lundergan Grimes, in what is expected to be a competitive race.  Already, Republican factions in the state are joining forces and rallying around McConnell to prevent losing one of the GOP’s most pivotal Senate seats, and Grimes aims to establish herself independent of President Barack Obama – who remains very unpopular in the Bluegrass State.


Another hot race to watch leading up to November will be the Arkansas Senate race.  Representative Tom Cotton (R) won the uncontested Republican Senate primary, marking the formal start of the showdown with incumbent Senator Mark Pryor (D).  Pryor is among several incumbent Democratic senators vulnerable this election cycle due to support for ObamaCare.  In 2012, Republican presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, carried Arkansas with 60.57% of the popular vote, spelling trouble for Pryor as he attempts to distance himself from the President and his policies.


Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley (D) easily defeated his primary challengers on Tuesday, while Monica Wehby – a pro-choice brain surgeon – emerged as the Republican primary victor over State Representative, Jason Conger.  An early critic of ObamaCare and a political outsider, Wehby will work to topple Merkley – a first-term senator who was narrowly elected in 2008.


The crowded Georgia primary is finally beginning to take shape:  businessman David Perdue and Rep. Jack Kingston (R) have advanced to a runoff for the GOP Senate nomination, as neither candidate was able to garner 50% of the vote on Tuesday.  Perdue and Kingston are vying for the opportunity to replace retiring Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-GA).  The runoff will take place in July and the winner will move on to face Democrat Michelle Nunn, the daughter of a former Georgia senator, in the general election.


Senate seats weren’t on the line in Idaho on Tuesday, but the Republican bid for the state’s 2nd Congressional District was.  Rep. Michael Simpson (R) defeated Tea Party candidate, Bryan Smith.  Simpson now looks to the general election where he will run against the former Democratic representative of Idaho’s 2nd District, Richard Stallings.  Stallings represented the 2nd District form 1984 to 1992.


Finally, voters in Pennsylvania had their eyes on several key state races.  In the 8th District, Kevin Strouse (D) won the Democratic primary; he will face off against Rep. Michael Fitzpatrick (R) to represent the district located just outside of Philadelphia.  Incumbent Rep. Bill Shuster (R) will also seek reelection in PA’s 9th District.  Shuster is set to run against the uncontested Democratic candidate, Alanna Hartzok (D), in what pollsters have deemed a Republican-safe district.  Finally in PA’s 13th District, State Rep. Brendan Boyle (D) knocked off three other candidates – including Clinton-supported Marjorie Margolies.  Boyle will now go on to challenge Republican Carson Dee-Adcock (R) for the District’s open seat, which was vacated by Rep. Allyson Schwartz (D) during her bid for governor.  Schwartz, however, did not secure the Democratic nomination for governor – instead, Tom Wolf (D) will battle the four-year incumbent governor, Tom Corbett (R).

With an exciting election season now underway, AMAC is committed to ensuring that our members have the information they need to make intelligent decisions in the ballot box come November 4th.  AMAC will continue to keep our members engaged in the latest political news as the campaigns kick into full gear!

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Pete Fischel
8 years ago

We need a net pickup of 6 U.S. Senate seats in 2014 to slow down Obama’s socialistic moves. Please don’t take for granted any of the contested races. Work hard for the candidates of your choosing.

A. Rivera
9 years ago

Sanctity of life is very imp. to us especially with the founding fathers recognizing our freedoms, it just obvious that Democrats have lost their way as those principle values and think about money above the value of innocent lives and also that also goes for the protection of our personnel working over seas for our country like the Ambassador who got killed and soldiers trying to defend our Ambassador. And to make matters worst our veterans here in the U.S. dying because they can’t see a doctor in due time.

9 years ago

I am a 75 year old former democrat, who did not vote a straight ticket, but for the individual. THEN I volunteered at the local democrat party ans saw what was inside that party. WOW, was I surprised and disappointed. I learned that I am a strong independent conservative. Nobody gets my vote until I know who they really are. There is a bio on every American out there somewhere. Learn more about the candidates on your ballots. Go to Town Hall meetings. Listen! Ask questions! Talk with others! Volunteer for the party or a candidate! Go D2D! Make calls! Talk with local, state and national candidates! Research the issues! Go to Senator’s or Congressperson’s website and learn what issues they support! Learn when specific votes are coming up for a vote in either chamber! Make a call, send an email, go to candidate Facebook page or Twitter your request for the office holder’s vote on a bill! I request an answer from them!! You are not alone out there! We may never meet those who think like we do, but when a vote is won or lost because of citizen participation, you will know you a part of a large group of people who think like you on that issue!!

By the way, it only takes a couple of seconds to send an email; it only takes a couple of hours to go D2D or make phone calls. Get involved and make something happen! I guarantee you will smile more often and you will feel better about being an American Patriot!

Tommy Thompson
9 years ago

#1, you forgot Louisiana! We need to get rid of Landrieu!

#2, etc. We need to concentrate on issues that will get conservatives elected. Don’t talk about abortion, gay rights, etc. things that are *not* main line pluses for us, and which we are not going to be able to change, at least for now. Do speak to enforcement of immigration laws as something that has to happen before any “reform” may be considered. Do speak about veterans’ issues, including providing timely health care that does not cause loss of life. Do speak to the abuses committed by the democRats (FDIC directing banks to provide fewer business loans to firearms related businesses, BATF requiring that lawful gun purchasers names be reported to them for permanent files infringing on our Second Amendment rights, IRS targeting conservative groups for “attention” and delays, NSA spying on average American citizens without cause or a search warrant, etc., etc., etc.. Don’t let them shape the discussion. They will always try to make conservatives appear hateful. We must counteract those attempts and highlight their transgressions and shortcomings!

Ivan Berry
9 years ago

Rik, it’s really sad.
A local Tea Party that I attend spent an entire evening promoting the idea of a Convention of States inititive to amend a Constitution that the leadership in Washington doesn’t follow anyway.
I am becoming more and more afraid that Texas is beginning to resemble California, especially since so many of them and the north-easters are coming to Texas for the better opportunities offered, at least for now.
The era of Reconstruction was worse, but it’s beginning to look like the carpit baggers and scaliwags are again beginning to take root. There is a joke going around. You know that most people here have called those of the north “Yankies.” Well, the joke goes somthing like this, “You know what Texans call someone from New York? They call them ‘Boss.’ “

Robert A Hirschmann
9 years ago

I would hope that the republicans will take control of the senate in November. If only to get rid of reid!!. If we win the senate he has to step down. That, in itself, would be a great help to the American people.

9 years ago

I have never voted for a Democrat in a national office during my 60yrs of life and have no intention of doing so now.
I am Not a socialist.

9 years ago

Early this year I attended a local Tea Party meeting, I couldn’t wait to get out of there. Almost everybody there was 50 years old or older. They held their meeting very business-like, they followed a planned agenda. The biggest and most important item on the agenda was how they were going to work to repeal the local plastic bag ban. I was shocked, here they were going to spend all their efforts to recruit others to call on neighborhoods, stand in front of grocery stores, and get people to sign a petition to present to the city council to overturn this nuisance law.

They had a discussion time, I couldn’t wait to speak. I blasted them on why were they wasting efforts on trying to overturn this nuisance plastic bag ban when the key issue was to make sure people voted to expell Democrats from Washington. Here in California, it was a lost cause on the state and local levels. Especially here in Orange County, where it is predominantly Republican except where the districts were dominated by Hispanics and Asian. I suggested wouldn’t efforts to gang up on a Democratic stronghold to try to vote out an incumbent Liberal from the House, like Lorretta Sanchez? No, I was told that you have to pick your battles that you have a chance to win! I said it’s Washington D.C. that matters, not whether you can overturn some nuisance plastic bag ban that really doesn’t matter since the state legislature was going to make the ban statewide anyways. I couldn’t convince them. Others approached me after the meeting to agree with me, I said why didn’t they speak up at the meeting? They said, because you have to pick your battles that could be won. You know, it only takes a spark to start a forest fire they said. Needless to say, I never attended another meeting. No wonder there was only about 30 people there at the meeting. Pick your battles you can win, indeed. I went there with hope and left there shaking my head in disbelief. Maybe it’s just Californians, otherwise we’ve lost the war already!

9 years ago
Reply to  Rik


That is one of the most depressing stories I’ve heard in a long time. The highest priority item they could come up with was overturning a damn local plastic bag ban? Talk about setting the bar really, really low and then concentrating on completely wrong priorities. I have to say your experience certainly doesn’t sound like any Tea Party meeting or conference call I’ve ever been on.

Presenting a petition to what is probably a completely Democrat-controlled city council would accomplish nothing! They would likely accept the petition and say they would “review the matter” and then turn around and toss it in the nearest trash can later on. If asked later about the issue, they would respond in one of two ways that all Democrat run city and state groups do 1) “We reviewed the matter fully and found our initial decision to be the correct one” or 2) “We’re still reviewing the matter”, which is what they’ll keep saying until you eventually stop asking about the issue. After all, their seats are probably completely safe, so why be responsive to a few folks who don’t agree with the Progressive agenda they’re pushing?

California is like New York, New Jersey and much of the northeast United States, if not much worse. Conservatives are out-numbered by Progressives and liberals by two, three or four to one in some cases here in the northeast. So the only real opportunity to still effect positive change for the country is at the federal level. That’s what the Tea Party groups here focus on.

9 years ago
Reply to  Rik


They WON! Sometimes it takes more than once to get your idea addressed at a local meeting. Keep going to inform these low information voters. They need to hear more from you and your opinions about important issues to all Americans. Please return and show the ones who approached you that their agreement with you means they are looking for a leader who knows what is important!! You may want to take a friend who agrees with you to add another voice!

Good luck upon your return to inform!

9 years ago

I agree Paul E. I hope everyone can be mature enough to see that we all MUST turn out and VOTE in November even though their preferred candidates didn’t win in the primaries. Lets all lick our wounds but we must remember that we can not allow the Socialists to remain in the majority. Get out to vote for the Republican candidates and get your conservative/Republican friends and neighbors to the polls so they can vote. This is a critical election!!!

9 years ago

Well with the massive financial assistance of the Chamber of Commerce, it’s no great surprise that most of the Republican incumbents sailed to an easy primary victory. So any expectation of a Republican win in November ushering in some sort of strong conservative shift within Congress itself needs to be re-evaluated. After all, most of the existing Republican incumbents who won their primaries, especially McConnell and Boehner, were very plain-spoken well beforehand on what they thought of conservatives in general.

So we are going to have another “lesser of two evils” election come November. I know many people, including myself, wanted this November to be something more, but this is the hand we’ve been dealt and have to make the best of it. Still this presents us with the opportunity to do some good for the country. The choice now being between the Progressive (Socialist) Party, that being the Democrats, and the existing Republican Party.

Obviously we all have to vote Republican, in order to at least ensure we maintain the House and potentially re-take the Senate. If we can control both houses of Congress, even with this less than ideal cast of players, we can ensure stopping the Progressive agenda from being advanced any further via legislation until at least 2016 anyway. That’s something of real value to the country. So we have to now get behind the Republican winners of the primaries and turn out in massive numbers come November. No pouting and refusing to show up in November, because your person din’t win his or her primary. All that does is ensure Democrats gain more seats and potential control in Congress.

Milton Kowalski
9 years ago
Reply to  PaulE

PaulE is right. Vote for the person with the “R” next to his or her name. We must take back the Senate and maintain control of the House! If your candidate lost in the primary, vote for the person that beat him/her. We can worry about purifying the party AFTER we gain the majority. The stakes are far too high to sit out the election in November.

Ivan Berry
9 years ago

Milton, it seems we have little choice regarding “lessor of two evils.” If we can hold it together, maybe there is hope downstream. But pressure needs to be put on and continued to align the Party with the principles that the nation was founded upon.
PaulE, I attempted to point out in a much earlier comment about the Chamber of Commerce in regards to “Big Business” that they were in it for themselves. That was in regards to Republicans and the trade “treaties.” Small businesses are in the same trap that the people are in. We (and they) are being submerged with both parties taking away choice. If we could convince all small business owners and operators that they would benefit from doing away with RINOS and Neo=Cons, and get back to real representation, along with small farmers that are being smothered by Big Ag, maybe,as Milton suggests, we could then purofy the party.

9 years ago
Reply to  Ivan Berry


I agree that the Chamber of Commerce acted to further its own interests and that of a select number of multi-national companies, who regularly benefit from government business. They wanted to ensure “business as usual” by backing many the establishment Republican incumbents who won over either Tea Party or independent candidates. After all, a federal government based on principles of limited government, with the original small set of clearly defined responsibilities articulated in the Constitution, wouldn’t be able to hand out massive government contracts or preferential treatment to these same businesses over and over again.

Yes, we continue to have a massive educational effort ahead of us to convince not only small businesses, but also the average person, of the benefit of returning to the limited powers of the federal government prior to the first incursions of Progressivism (Socialism), that occurred in 1913 under Wilson. Progressives have had over a 100 years to incrementally erode our country’s founding principles and gradually accustom the country to more and more principles of Socialism. This is a long-term battle, not a short-term fight that will be won by one or two election cycles.

9 years ago
Reply to  PaulE


You are on the right track. Vote in your primary and win or lose, VOTE in November. Did you look at McConnell’s and Boehner’s win numbers? They were LOWER than ever before. That means many people are listening and hearing what they like about conservatives ideas.

You have the right idea about voting in the November election. I am spreading the word: “Do not disappoint the American people by staying home and not voting because your candidate did not win some election!” Why shoot yourself in the foot and get another Obama in office because you are not thinking straight and remind yourself that a conservative Senate in 2014 and a Republican president in 2016 means we CAN WIN!

Keep on encouraging all to vote. If we do not vote, we do not care! I still believe most Americans are looking for a strong leader who will encourage us to be strong individuals and strive for the American dream for all!

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