2022 primary election
Photo credit: iStock.com/BlackSalmon

In our last 2022 primary election preview, we looked at gubernatorial and U.S. Senate races in Georgia, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Oregon.  To recap, 36 of the 50 states will hold gubernatorial elections this year.  There are currently 23 Democratic governors and 27 Republican governors.  Democrats are defending 16 governorships this November, while Republicans will defend 20.  Further, 34 out of 100 U.S. Senate seats are up for election this year, including two special elections in Oklahoma and California.  Plenty is at stake in other states, such as Arizona, Florida, and Nevada.


Election Ratings

The Cook Political Report lists 13 current Democratic governorships as solid or likely/lean Democratic and 5 as a toss-up.  Cook further lists 16 current Republican governorships as solid or likely/lean Republican and 2 as a toss-up.  The toss-ups are Kansas (D), Michigan (D), Nevada (D), Pennsylvania (D), Wisconsin (D), Arizona (R), and Georgia (R).

Among the U.S. Senate elections, Cook lists 11 current Democratic U.S. Senate seats as solid or likely/lean Democratic and 3 as a toss-up.  Cook further lists 19 current Republican Senate seats as solid or likely/lean Republican and 2 as a toss-up.  The toss-ups are Arizona (D), Georgia (D), Nevada (D), Pennsylvania (R), and Wisconsin (R).


Arizona

Arizona’s primary election is on August 2.  The state will have a new governor elected in November, with incumbent Doug Ducey (R) term-limited and unable to run again.  Ducey won his last election in 2018 with 56% of the vote to David Garcia’s (D) 41.8%.  However, Joe Biden bested Donald Trump in Arizona by 0.3% in the 2020 presidential election.

Democratic Gubernatorial Primary

  • Katie Hobbs
  • Marco Lopez Jr.
  • Aaron Lieberman

Republican Gubernatorial Primary

  • Kari Lake
  • Matt Salmon
  • Steve Gaynor
  • Karrin Taylor Robson
  • Jorge Rivas
  • Paola Tulliani-Zen

The Cook Political Report and the Sabato Crystal Ball rate the Arizona governor’s race as a toss-up.  The most recent poll (April 4–April 5) listed by Real Clear Politics (RCP) had Lake up seven points in the Republican primary over Robson.  The most recent poll in the Democratic primary listed by RCP is from January and had Hobbs up 37 points.


Incumbent U.S. Senator Mark Kelly (D) is running for re-election in Arizona.  Sen. Kelly won a special election in 2020, beating Martha McSally (R) by 2.4%.

Democratic Senate Primary

  • Sen. Mark Kelly

Republican Senate Primary

  • Mark Brnovich
  • Jim Lamon
  • Blake Masters
  • Michael McGuire
  • Justin Olson

The Cook Political Report and the Sabato Crystal Ball rate the Arizona Senate race as a toss-up.  The most recent poll listed by RCP from early April had Brnovich, the current Arizona Attorney General, up five points over Lamon in the Republican primary.


Florida

Florida’s primary election is scheduled for August 23, where incumbents will be running for re-election in races for Senate and governor.  Donald Trump beat Joe Biden in Florida in the 2020 Election, 51.2% to 47.9%.

Incumbent Ron DeSantis (R) is running for re-election in the governor’s race.  Gov. DeSantis narrowly won his last election in 2018, beating Andrew Gillum (D), 49.6%–49.2%.

Democratic Gubernatorial Primary

  • Charlie Crist
  • Nikki Fried
  • Amaro Lionheart
  • Alex Lundmark
  • David Nelson Freeman
  • Annette Taddeo

Republican Gubernatorial Primary

  • Gov. Ron DeSantis
  • John Joseph Mercadante

The Cook Political Report and Sabato Crystal Ball rate the Florida governor’s race as ‘Likely Republican.’  RCP has a poll from February that had Crist up eight points over Fried in the Democratic primary race.  The RCP average for a matchup between DeSantis and Crist has DeSantis up 8.8%.  The RCP average for a matchup between DeSantis and Fried has DeSantis up 12.8%.


Incumbent Marco Rubio (R) is running for re-election in Florida’s Senate race.  Rubio won his last election in 2016 with 52% of the vote to Patrick Murphy’s (D) 44.3%.

Democratic Senate Primary

  • Edward Abud
  • Rep. Val Demings
  • Allen Ellison
  • Albert Fox
  • Alan Grayson
  • Ken Russell
  • William Sanchez
  • Coleman Watson
  • Joshua Weil

Republican Senate Primary

  • Sen. Marco Rubio
  • Kevin DePuy
  • Calvin Driggers
  • Ervan Katari Miller
  • Josue Larose
  • Jake Loubriel
  • Angela Marie Walls-Windhauser

The Cook Political Report rates the Florida Senate race as ‘Lean Republican’ while the Sabato Crystal Ball rates the race as ‘Likely Republican.’  With the most recent polls from February, the RCP average for a general election matchup between Sen. Rubio and Rep. Demings has Rubio up nine points.


Nevada

Nevada’s primary election is on June 14.  Joe Biden beat Donald Trump, 50.2% to 47.5% in Nevada in the 2020 presidential election.

Incumbent Governor Steve Sisolak (D) is running for re-election in the governor’s race.  Governor Sisolak won the last election in 2018 with 49.4% of the vote to Adam Laxalt’s (R) 45.3%.  Gov. Sisolak faces only one primary opponent, while the Republican race is quite crowded.

Democratic Gubernatorial Primary

  • Gov. Steve Sisolak
  • Tom Collins

Republican Gubernatorial Primary

  • Seven Achilles Evans
  • Gary Evertsen
  • Joey Gilbert
  • Eddie Hamilton
  • Tom Heck
  • Dean Heller
  • John Lee
  • Joe Lombardo
  • Stan Lusak
  • Guy Nohra
  • Edward O’Brien
  • Fred Simon
  • William Walls
  • Amber Whitley
  • Barak Zilberberg

The Cook Political Report and the Sabato Crystal Ball rate the Nevada governor’s race as a toss-up.  RCP has polls listed for numerous hypothetical general election matchups.  One recent poll from early April has Lee up three points over Gov. Sisolak, Lombardo up two points over Gov. Sisolak, Heller and Gov. Sisolak tied, Gov. Sisolak up four points over Gilbert, and Gov. Sisolak up 12 points over Nohra.


Incumbent U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D) faces a few primary challengers and a crowded Republican field in Nevada’s Senate race.  Sen. Masto won her last election with 47.1% of the vote to Joe Heck’s (R) 44.7%.

Democratic Senate Primary

  • Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto
  • Stephanie Kasheta
  • Corey Reid
  • Allen Rheinhart

Republican Senate Primary

  • Sam Brown
  • William Conrad
  • William Hockstedler
  • Adam Laxalt
  • Sharelle Mendenhall
  • Tyler Perkins
  • Carlo Poliak
  • Paul Rodriguez

The Cook Political Report and the Sabato Crystal Ball rate Nevada’s Senate race as a toss-up.  RCP has two conflicting polls from early April listed.  One poll shows Sen. Cortez Masto up 8 points over Laxalt and Brown.  Another has Laxalt up three points over Sen. Cortez Masto and Brown up one point over Sen. Cortez Masto.


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