Incumbent turnover increases only slightly following nine state legislative primaries

From Ballotpedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Competitiveness2014.jpg
Impact on incumbent turnover
KansasMichiganMissouriWashingtonTennesseeHawaiiConnecticutMinnesotaWisconsin
Updates to Ballotpedia's Competitiveness Analysis
Incumbents in primariesGeneral election competitionOpen seats

August 13, 2014

By Tyler King

With only 10 state primaries to go, the rate of incumbents winning against primary challengers now stands at 86.4 percent, an increase from 86.1 percent prior to the August primaries. In just the last two weeks, nine state primaries have come and gone. Of the 19 incumbents to be defeated in that time, eight were in Tennessee. Only Maryland and Texas have seen a larger number of incumbents defeated this year. Eleven incumbents were defeated in Texas and twelve in Maryland primaries.

Thus far, 36 states have held primary elections. Of those states, 748 incumbents retired and another 102 were defeated in primaries.

Democratic Party 61 Democrats faced primary opposition in the first half of August. Eight were defeated (13.1%).
Republican Party 92 Republicans faced a primary challenger, with eleven (12.0%) failing to advance past the primary.

As the primaries continue Ballotpedia will continue to update the competitiveness analysis and incumbent turnover figures, giving you the play-by-play of this year's state legislative elections. Below we detail the exact events that occurred in the most recent primaries.

Impact on incumbent turnover

See also: State legislative incumbent turnover in 2014

A total of 36 states have held primary elections in 2014, with another ten to come. In the states that have held primaries, 748 incumbents retired and another 102 were defeated in primaries. 850 total incumbents will not be running in the general election, meaning that 18.8 percent of the seats up for election are open.

In total, 748 partisan incumbents have faced primary opposition so far.

Democratic Party 38 Democrats have been defeated, with 87.5 percent advancing past the primary.
Republican Party 64 Republicans have been defeated, while the remaining 85.6 percent have advanced.
  • Overall, 86.4 percent of incumbents have advanced past the primary.
  • Republicans account for 55.9 percent of overall partisan incumbent turnover, while Democrats make up 44.1 percent. Of the seats up for election in 2014, 51.6 percent are held by Republicans and 47.5 percent are held by Democrats.
Incumbent turnover compared by year
2010 2010 percent 2012 2012 percent 2014 2014 percent
Retired Democrats 579 52.07% 517 46.66% 441 44.77%
Defeated Democrats 52 54.17% 73 37.06% 38 37.25%
Total D turnover 631 52.24% 590 45.21% 479 44.07%
Retired Republicans 533 47.93% 591 53.34% 544 55.23%
Defeated Republicans 44 45.83% 124 62.94% 64 62.75%
Total R turnover 577 47.76% 715 54.79% 608 55.93%

Kansas

August 5, 2014 election

See also: Kansas House of Representatives elections, 2014

Twenty-one incumbents, all Republicans, faced primary opposition. Three were defeated, a sharp decline from the 20 that lost in 2012 primaries. Factors that contributed to such high numbers in 2012 included incumbent versus incumbent primaries due to redistricting and a strong push from further-right Republicans to oust the more moderate members of the party.

Michigan

August 5, 2014 election

See also: Michigan State Senate elections, 2014 and Michigan House of Representatives elections, 2014

Twenty-four incumbents, eight Democrats and sixteen Republicans, faced a primary challenger. Rep. Frank Foster (R) was the only legislator who failed to advance past the primary.

Missouri

August 5, 2014 election

See also: Missouri State Senate elections, 2014 and Missouri House of Representatives elections, 2014

Twenty incumbents, six Democrats and fourteen Republicans, faced primary opposition. One incumbent Bonnaye Mims, a Democrat from House District 27, was defeated by a primary challenger. Unofficial results put her opponent ahead by 17 votes.[2]

Washington

August 5, 2014 election

See also: Washington State Senate elections, 2014 and Washington House of Representatives elections, 2014

Seventeen incumbents, eight Democrats and nine Republicans, faced primary opposition. One incumbent, Leonard Christian (R), from House District 4a, failed to advance past the primary. Christian was defeated by Republicans Bob McCaslin and Diana Wilhite. He was appointed in January 2014 to fill the seat vacated by Larry Crouse (R).

Tennessee

August 7, 2014 election

See also: Tennessee State Senate elections, 2014 and Tennessee House of Representatives elections, 2014

Twenty-six incumbents, five Democrats and twenty-one Republicans, faced primary opposition, with eight being defeated. Those incumbents, two Democrats and six Republicans, are:

State Senate

State House

Hawaii

August 9, 2014 election

See also: Hawaii State Senate elections, 2014 and Hawaii House of Representatives elections, 2014

Twenty incumbents, nineteen Democrats and one Republican, faced primary opposition. Three incumbents, all Democrats, were defeated.

State Senate

State House

Connecticut

August 12, 2014 election

See also: Connecticut State Senate elections, 2014 and Connecticut House of Representatives elections, 2014

Twenty-four incumbents, ten Democrats and eight Republicans, faced primary opposition. Two were defeated: one Democrat from each chamber.

Minnesota

August 12, 2014 election

See also: Minnesota House of Representatives elections, 2014

Five incumbents, four Democrats and one Republican, faced primary opposition. All five advanced past the primary election.

Wisconsin

August 12, 2014 election

See also: Wisconsin State Senate elections, 2014 and Wisconsin State Assembly elections, 2014

Eleven incumbents, three Democrats and eight Republicans, faced primary opposition and all defeated their primary challengers.

Updates to Ballotpedia's Competitiveness Analysis

See also: 2014 state legislative elections analyzed using a Competitiveness Index

Candidate lists can change frequently throughout the election season. Ballotpedia staff re-examines each list on a monthly basis for any changes. In a few instances, those changes can impact the overall data under our Competitiveness Analysis. The analysis is updated as those changes to candidate lists are identified.

The following is a brief summary of three pillars of the analysis.

Incumbents in primaries

See also: Incumbents with a primary challenger in the 2014 state legislative elections
CA2014image1.png

A total of 980 incumbents have faced or will face a primary challenger in 2014.

Since 5,048 incumbents are running for re-election in 2014, that means that only 19.4% of them faced or will face a primary challenger. In 2012, 1,175 (24.6%) of incumbents faced a primary opponent.

The remaining 4,068 incumbents (80.6%) that ran for re-election in 2014 had or will have no primary challenger.

General election competition

See also: Major party candidates with major party competition in the November 2014 state legislative elections

There are 1,972 state senators and 5,411 state representatives. Heading into the election, there are only 72 total third party legislators out of 7,383 total state legislators. Of those 72, 49 are Nebraska State Senators, where all candidates must run as nonpartisan. Thus, a major party candidate is virtually guaranteed election when facing third parties.

CA2014image02.png
  • Given that major party candidates win nearly 100% of the time, a candidate running without any major party opposition is essentially assured election -- even if there are third party candidates.
  • There is only one major party candidate in 2,739 (45.2%) of the 6,056 seats up for election in 2014.
  • There is more than one major party candidate in 3,317 (54.8%) of the 6,056 seats up for election in 2014. In 2012, 3,709 (61.7%) seats had two or more major party candidates.

Open seats

See also: Open seats in the 2014 state legislative elections
CA2014image03.png

There is no incumbent running for re-election in 1,007 (16.6%) of the 6,056 seats up for election in 2014, either because he or she voluntarily chose not to run again, was impacted by term limits or affected by redistricting. This is a decrease from 21.2 percent in 2012.

The incumbent ran for re-election in 83.3% of the 6,056 seats up for election.

See also

References