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Primary change: Final legislative primary leaves total incumbents defeated just shy of 200

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September 17, 2012

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By Geoff Pallay

MADISON, Wisconsin: In the final legislative primary of 2012, voters in New York defeated at least two incumbents with at least one more still trailing. The total incumbents defeated has now reached 197, more than double the total defeated in 2010.

On July 26, 2012, Ballotpedia released an analysis of the rate at which incumbents are being defeated by challengers in state legislative primaries. That study was conducted roughly halfway through the primary season, and found that 76 incumbents had been defeated through the first 48 percent of primaries. After each primary, we will update those figures. This update focuses on New York.

Of the 197 incumbents that have lost a primary in 2012, 74 are Democratic incumbents and 123 are Republican incumbents.

New York

A total of 189 New York legislative incumbents filed for re-election. Thirty-nine incumbents faced a primary, and opponents were victorious in two of those races. Thus, 5.13 percent of opposed incumbents were defeated by their primary challenger. Only 20.63 percent of incumbents actually faced a primary.

The two total incumbents who lost is fewer than the four incumbents who lost a 2010 primary in New York.

Currently Roy McDonald is trailing by 124 votes in his primary against challenger Kathleen A. Marchione. There are still absentee ballots to be counted.

Cumulative table of results

Individual State Results Nationwide Cumulative Results
State Primary date Total Incumbents Running Total Incumbents Facing Primary Total Incumbents Defeated % Incumbents Defeated*** Total Incumbents Defeated Total Incumbents Facing primary % Incumbents Defeated***
New York 9/13/2012 189 39 2&&& 5.13% 197 1,163 16.94%
Delaware 9/11/2012 53 10 3 30% 195 1,124 17.35%
New Hampshire 9/11/2012 310 144 22 15.28% 195 1,124 17.35%
Rhode Island 9/11/2012 101 34 7 20.59% 195 1,124 17.35%
Massachusetts 9/6/2012 189 21 4 19.05% 163 936 17.41%
Alaska 8/28/2012 53 17 2 11.76% 159 915 17.38%
Arizona 8/28/2012 59 27 2 7.41% 159 915 17.38%
Vermont 8/28/2012 155 13 0 0% 159 915 17.38%
Wyoming 8/21/2012 60 21 3 14.29% 155 858 18.07%
Connecticut 8/14/2012 161 9 4 44.44% 152 837 18.16%
Florida 8/14/2012 111 36 3 8.33% 152 837 18.16%
Minnesota 8/14/2012 158 11 1 9.09% 152 837 18.16%
Wisconsin 8/14/2012 94 16 2 12.50% 152 837 18.16%
Hawaii 8/11/2012 71 27 5 18.5% 142 765 18.56%
Kansas 8/7/2012 129 53 20 37.74% 137 738 18.56%
Michigan 8/7/2012 91 36 5 13.89% 137 738 18.56%
Missouri 8/7/2012 126 35 8 22.86% 137 738 18.56%
Washington 8/7/2012 93 14 0 0% 137 738 18.56%
Tennessee 8/2/2012 104 37 12 32.43% 104 600 17.33%
Georgia 7/31/2012 210 50 12+++ 24.00% 92 563 16.34%
Utah 6/26/2012 78 29 8 27.59% 80 513 15.59%
Colorado 6/26/2012 54 5 2 40.00% 72 484 14.88%
Oklahoma 6/26/2012 105 12 1 8.33% 70 479 14.61%
Maine 6/12/2012 121 5 0 0.00% 69 467 14.78%
Nevada 6/12/2012 36 12 2 16.67% 69 462 14.94%
South Carolina 6/12/2012 146 37 6 16.22% 67 450 14.89%
North Dakota 6/12/2012 61 7 4 57.14% 61 413 14.77%
California 6/5/2012 56 20 0 0.00% 57 406 14.04%
Montana 6/5/2012 82 17 4 23.53% 57 386 14.77%
Iowa 6/5/2012 97 16 3 18.75% 53 369 14.36%
New Mexico 6/5/2012 92 29 5 17.24% 50 353 14.16%
South Dakota 6/5/2012 74 23 5 21.74% 45 324 13.89%
Texas 5/29/2012 147 45 11 24.44% 40 301 13.29%
Kentucky 5/22/2012 106 21 1 4.76% 29 256 11.33%
Arkansas 5/22/2012 88 14 2 14.29% 28 235 11.91%
Nebraska 5/15/2012 17 5 0 0.00% 26 221 11.76%
Oregon 5/15/2012 66 4 2 50.00% 26 216 12.04%
Idaho 5/15/2012 70 34 3 8.82% 24 212 11.32%
West Virginia 5/8/2012 98 37 2 5.41% 21 178 11.80%
Indiana 5/8/2012 105 17 0 0.00% 19 141 13.48%
North Carolina 5/8/2012 128 39 7 17.95% 19 124 15.32%
Pennsylvania 4/24/2012 210 37 5 13.51% 12 85 14.12%
Illinois 3/20/2012 149 33 6 18.18% 7 48 14.58%
Ohio 3/6/2012 101 15 1 6.67% 1 15 6.67%
***Note: The percent is calculated by dividing the total number of incumbents who lost by the number of incumbents who actually faced a primary. It is not using the total number of incumbents who ran for re-election.

+++A 12th incumbent lost in the Georgia August 21, 2012 runoff. Eleven incumbents lost in the July 31 primary.

&&&Incumbent Roy McDonald is trailing by 124 votes prior to the counting of absentee ballots.

Full study

See also