Primary change: After three primaries yesterday, total incumbents defeated in 2012 has doubled from 2010
By Geoff Pallay
MADISON, Wisconsin: Twice as many incumbents have been defeated in 2012 legislative primaries as in 2010, after at least 30 incumbents fell in Delaware, New Hampshire and Rhode Island yesterday. With only one legislative primary remaining, the total number of incumbents defeated in 2012 has now doubled the totals from 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 Delaware, New Hampshire and Rhode Island.
Of the 192 incumbents that have lost a primary in 2012, 71 are Democratic incumbents and 121 are Republican incumbents. Thus far, 17.08 percent of incumbents facing a primary opponent have been defeated. In 2010, a total of 96 incumbents were defeated in legislative primaries -- 52 Democrats and 44 Republicans.
A total of 53 Delaware legislative incumbents filed for re-election. Ten incumbents faced a primary, and opponents were victorious in three of those races. Thus, 30 percent of opposed incumbents were defeated by their primary challenger.
The three total incumbents who lost last night is higher than the 1 incumbent who lost a 2010 primary in Delaware.
A total of 310 New Hampshire legislative incumbents filed for re-election. One-hundred forty-four incumbents faced a primary, and opponents were victorious in at least 20 of those races.
In 2010, 83 incumbents faced a primary but none were defeated in the primary. There are still a number of races that are too close to call involving incumbents.
A total of 101 Rhode Island legislative incumbents filed for re-election. Thirty-four incumbents faced a primary, and opponents were victorious in seven of those races.
The seven total incumbents who lost last night is less than the 10 that were defeated in 2010. In 2010, Rhode Island had the most legislative incumbents defeated of any state. This year, seven states saw more incumbents defeated than in Rhode Island.
The final state legislative primaries takes place Thursday, September 13 in New York.
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***|
|***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.
&&&A 4th incumbent is currently losing by 24 votes, as of September 12. A recount has begun.
^^^A number of races in New Hampshire are still too close to call, as of September 12.
- Incumbents defeated in 2012's state legislative elections
- State legislative elections, 2012
- 2012 state legislative elections analyzed using a Competitiveness Index
- Ballotpedia's Competitiveness Analysis for 2012
- Major party candidates with no major party challengers in the November 2012 state legislative elections
- Open seats in the 2012 state legislative elections
- Incumbents with a primary challenger in the 2012 state legislative elections