Key insights from Tuesday’s primaries in South Carolina, Nevada, and beyond

The ​recent congressional primaries in Maine,​ Nevada,‌ North Dakota,⁢ and South Carolina highlighted the challenges of unseating incumbent lawmakers. Notable victories include Nancy Mace (R-SC), who overcame ‌a‍ GOP primary‌ challenge‌ despite opposition from former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and supported by Donald Trump. Trump’s influence‌ was further affirmed ‌as most of his endorsed candidates succeeded, such⁣ as Sam⁢ Brown in Nevada‌ who ⁣is set to ⁤challenge Sen. Jacky Rosen (D-NV).

In other races, Maine state Rep.​ Austin Theriault secured the GOP nomination to run against Democrat ⁤Jared Golden, while in Ohio, state ⁤Sen. Michael Rulli won a⁢ special election to complete Bill Johnson’s⁤ term, bolstering Republican control. In North Dakota, Rep. ⁣Kelly Armstrong won ⁢the GOP gubernatorial primary, positioning himself ‍as the likely next governor.

These primaries have set the stage for key matchups in the ‌upcoming general elections⁢ across various⁢ states, with control of⁤ both the House and Senate potentially at ⁤play.

Congressional primaries in Maine, Nevada, North Dakota, and South Carolina are once again proving how hard it is to unseat incumbent lawmakers.

Reps. Nancy Mace (R-SC), Joe Wilson (R-SC), and Susie Lee (D-NV) all beat back competitors in their party primaries.

Former President Donald Trump proved his hold over the Republican party once again, even though he wasn’t on the primary ballots Tuesday night, after most of his endorsed candidates saw success in several races.

One of the Trump-backed candidates that saw success was Sam Brown, who Republicans selected to compete against vulnerable Sen. Jacky Rosen (D-NV) in one of the most closely watched races this election cycle.


Here are the Washington Examiner’s top takeaways from Tuesday’s primaries.

Nancy Mace survives McCarthy-backed primary challenger

Former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy speaks in Washington, Oct. 19, 2023, left, and Rep. Nancy Mace (R-SC) speaks Nov. 15, 2021, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo)

Rep. Nancy Mace (R-SC) overcame a GOP primary challenge from Catherine Templeton, who was backed by former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy.

Mace was among the eight Republicans who voted to oust McCarthy from the speakership last year. McCarthy’s revenge campaign against Mace ultimately failed Tuesday night, as the Republican lawmaker had the crucial backing of Trump.

The Associated Press called the race for Mace nearly two hours after polls closed at 7 p.m. ET. Mace bested Templeton, 56.8% to 29.8%, with 70% of votes counted.

Mace’s victory also comes despite longtime Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC) backing Templeton. Democrat Michael Moore won the primary to take on Mace but the Palmetto State’s congressional map has made it more likely that Mace will cruise to victory in November.

It’s official: Sam Brown to take on Sen. Jacky Rosen

FILE – Republican senatorial candidate Sam Brown speaks after filing his paperwork to run for the Senate, March 14, 2024, at the State Capitol in Carson City, Nev. Brown is seeking to replace incumbent U.S. Sen. Jacky Rosen. (AP Photo/Andy Barron)

Nevada Republican and Army veteran Sam Brown won the GOP primary and is now gearing up for a general election matchup against Sen. Jacky Rosen (D-NV) in one of the most crucial races that will determine control of the Senate.

The Associated Press called the race for Brown more than one hour after polls closed. Brown won nearly 57% with 58% of votes counted.

His closest competitor was Jeff Gunter, a former Trump ambassador to Iceland, who pulled in nearly 17% of support.

Trump made a late endorsement in the primary for Brown, in a major snub of Gunter. Brown was also backed by the National Republican Senatorial Committee Chairman Steve Daines (R-MT).

Republicans chose challengers to take on incumbent Democrats

Maine state Rep. Austin Theriault won the GOP primary to take on Rep. Jared Golden (D-ME) for the 2nd District.

Theriault defeated Republican Michael Soboleski in the primary, 66.4% to 33.6%, with 73% of votes counted, according to the Associated Press.

Both Trump and House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) supported Theriault in the primary, as the GOP hopes to flip Golden’s seat in November, helping maintain GOP control of the House.

But Golden remains formidable. He defeated Republican Rep. Bruce Poliquin in 2018 and won reelection in 2020 despite Trump winning the district in 2016 and 2020.

In Nevada, results from the Republican primary to decide who will run against incumbent Rep. Susie Lee (D-NV) in the general election race for the 3rd District had not been called yet as of midnight Wednesday morning, with tax analyst Drew Johnson leading the field at 31.1% with 74% of votes counted.

The district is another closely watched contest that will help determine control of the House.

Ohio voters decide on Bill Johnson’s replacement

Republican state Sen. Michael Rulli will finish out former Republican Rep. Bill Johnson’s term for this Congress after winning the special election Tuesday night.

The Associated Press called the race at 9:02 p.m. with Rulli winning 52.7% of the vote counted at the time the race was decided.

Rulli’s win gives House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) an extra boost to his already slim control of the House. Democrat Michael Kripchak will face off against Rulli in November for the seat’s full term.

Kelly Armstrong wins primary to succeed Doug Burgum

U.S. Rep. Kelly Armstrong, R-N.D., stands for a photo Monday, June 10, 2024, outside the state Capitol in Bismarck, N.D. Armstrong, a three-term congressman who holds North Dakota’s only U.S. House seat, is running for governor against Lt. Gov. Tammy Miller in the Republican gubernatorial primary election on Tuesday, June 11. (AP Photo/Jack Dura)

Rep. Kelly Armstrong (R-ND), the lone House member in North Dakota, won the GOP primary to succeed outgoing Gov. Doug Burgum (R-ND).

The victory all but ensures Armstrong will be the next governor in North Dakota, a state that Trump won by nearly 34 percentage points in 2020.

The Associated Press called the race for Armstrong, who had the backing of Trump, at 9:21 p.m. Eastern time at nearly 73%, with 89% of the votes counted. Lt. Gov. Tammy Miller, who was backed by Burgum, won 27.1%.

The battle to replace Armstrong is set

Public Service Commissioner Julie Fedorchak, a Republican candidate for North Dakota’s single U.S. House seat, speaks to reporters during a press conference Tuesday, June 11, 2024, at her campaign office in Bismarck, N.D. Fedorchak condemned text messages that portray her as withdrawing from the competitive House race, the same day as the primary election. (AP Photo/Jack Dura)

North Dakota Public Service Commissioner Julie Fedorchak and Democrat Trygve Hammer won their respective primaries to replace Armstrong in North Dakota’s 1st District.

Fedorchak won 46.2% of the vote with 91% of ballots counted, defeating four other Republican candidates.

Hammer defeated Roland Riemers in the Democratic primary winning 74% with 91% of votes counted. The 1st District is a solid Republican seat meaning Fedorchak will likely become North Dakota’s sole member of the House after the November election.

Trump has a mostly good night on endorsements

The former president’s endorsement power proved to still have the Midas touch, as most of his endorsed candidates, including Mace, Theriault, and Brown, survived primary competitors.

Meanwhile, in the Palmetto State’s 4th District, Trump-backed Rep. William Timmons won, with the Associated Press calling the race at 11:55 p.m. Eastern at 51.6% with 99% of votes counted. The race took more than five hours to call after polls closed at 7 p.m. Eastern.


But the Trump-endorsed pastor Mark Burns did not outright win South Carolina’s 3rd district GOP primary. Instead, Burns and nurse Sheri Biggs are headed to a runoff race after failing to reach a majority of the vote.

In Nevada, Trump-endorsed candidate John Lee is facing a competitive 4th District primary to challenge incumbent Rep. Steven Horsford (D-NV), where the race has not been called as of 12:47 a.m. Wednesday morning.

Rachel Schilke and Ramsey Touchberry contributed to this story.

" Conservative News Daily does not always share or support the views and opinions expressed here; they are just those of the writer."

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