July 18 Special Elections Preview
There are three important state legislative elections tomorrow, although 2 are key contested primaries
New Hampshire State House District Merrimack 18
We head back to New Hampshire this week, the state where Democrats flipped their first state legislative seat in Donald Trump’s presidency in May, but this time it is the Democrats who look to defend a seat. Andrew DeTreville, the 85 year old Democrat incumbent in this Concord seat, resigned for reasons I can’t find in February, just after his 957–761 victory over Republican Michael Feeley in November. Feeley is once again the Republican nominee and has kept himself in the race with a good campaign. Kris Schultz won the Democratic primary and is definitely the favorite in a district that voted 58%-37% in favor of Hillary Clinton. However, New Hampshire’s small districts, which average just 3,000 eligible voters, make special elections very hard to predict. Polls close at 7PM and I would say that the most likely outcome, probably with an 80–85% chance, would be a victory by Schultz. However, there is still a chance of an upset and this seat is not by any means secure.
New Hampshire State House District Grafton 9 (Primary)
I’ll keep this short, but the 4-way Republican primary in Grafton is worth paying attention to. The candidates are Paul Simund, Vincent Migliore, Timothy Sweetsir, and Burton Williams. The winner will undoubtably become the favorite to win the September 5 general election for this Republican seat. Tom Ploszaj was the only candidate to file for the Democrats but has been a lot less present than write-in candidate Joshua Adjutant, who is the slight favorite. Libertarian John Babriarz was unopposed in his primary. Check back in September for a full analysis of this race.
Rhode Island State Senate District 13 (Primary)
There is also a primary in this Democratic-leaning Rhode Island Senate District, a seat which became open when popular Rhode Island Democratic Leader M. Teresa Paiva Weed resigned after accepting a high level job in the state’s medical system. There are four Democratic candidates for this Newport seat and the primary should be close. David Hanos Jr. is the favorite after being endorsed by Paiva Weed, but will be challenged strongly by John Florez, David Joseph Allard and Dawn Euer. What makes this primary interesting is that although Hanos is favored, each candidate has a shot at winning. On the Republican side, 2014 candidate Michael Smith is unopposed and will join Green Party candidate Gregory Larson and Independent Kimberly Ripoli in facing the Democratic winner on August 22.