Hello all, your friendly neighborhood obscure election observer here. There are a number of special elections occurring on November 8, so many that David has suggested I drop a diary instead of it getting filed away in the daily digest. Without further ado, here's the list:
SD-16 - State Senate President Russell Pearce faces a recall. This is a Wisconsin-style recall, where Pearce faces Jerry Lewis, the superintendent of a charter school organization. Both are Republicans. There was actually a poll done, showing Lewis up by 3 over Pearce.
Georgia seats are filled by an open primary/runoff system.
SD-28 - A Republican seat that stretches from Fulton County to the Alabama state line, there are ten candidates running here, including two Democrats, Wayne Seabolt and the amusingly-named Jammie Williams, seven Republicans, Duke Blackburn, Matt Brass, Mike Crane, Kyle Frank, Dale Pepper, Edward Stone, and Mark Washington, and an independent, Cynthia Bennett. This is an extremely Republican seat (about 72-27 McCain, according to DRA), so I would expect a Republican to emerge victorious in a runoff.
SD-50 - Another open Republican seat, this one is in northeastern Georgia. It's even more Republican than the 28th, clocking in at about 74-25 McCain. One Democrat is running, Mary Beth Focer, along with four Republicans, Rick Austin, Curtis Burger, David Strickland, and John Wilkinson.
HD-10 - The Republican who held this seat (Rick Austin) resigned to run for SD-50, discussed above. No Democrats filed, so the only candidates on the ballot are three Republicans (Bruce Harkness, Lori Duke Jones, and Terry Rogers). This district is even more Republican than SD-50, at about 78-21 McCain, and is based in
Clarksville Habersham County.
HD-25 - Finally, a fourth formerly-Republican seat, this one is in southern Hall County, south of Gainesville. It is also heavily-Republican, at about 75-24 McCain. One Democrat, Paul Godfrey, filed, along with six Republicans, Bobby Banks, Emory West Dunahoo, Dominic Ottaviano, Todd Reed, William Sykes, and Kris Yardley.
SD-18 - The big one of the bunch, this is the seat left open by Democrat Swati Dandekar. The candidates are Democrat Liz Mathis, a former television news anchor, and Republican Cindy Golding, a Linn County Republican Party official. The seat is mostly composed of the town of Marion and the rural northern parts of Linn County.
HD-51 - This is a recall of Rep. Paul Scott, a Republican. The district is in southern Genessee County, and went 52-46 Obama, so it's a fairly swingy district, although probably a little Republican-leaning, given Obama's statewide performance. This is a yes/no recall, so if Scott is recalled, another election will take place to choose his replacement.
SD-08 - Kinda pointless to mention, but there's a special here for the remaining two months of the term of the late Democratic Senator Jack Gordon. The same candidates, Democrat Russell Jolly and Republican Patsy Gregory, are on the ballot for the special and the general.
HD-15 - An open Republican seat in St. Charles County, this is being contested by Democrat Paul Woody, an attorney, Republican Chrissy Sommer, a business executive, and Libertarian Bill Slantz, a media consultant. The district went 51-48 McCain, so it's not extremely Republican.
HD-39 - This is a safely Democratic seat in Kansas City; the candidates are retired teacher Judy Morgan, a Democrat, and attorney Jamie Barker Landes, a Republican. The seat went 78-21 Obama in 2008.
HD-41 - Another safely Democratic seat in Kansas City; Democrat Brandon Ellington, a community activist who ran for the Kansas City Council in 2007, is unopposed. The district is majority-black and went 89-11 Obama in '08.
HD-83 - Back to the other side of the state, this is a seat in St. Louis County formerly held by a Democrat. Union organizer and former Overland City Council member Jeff O'Connell is the Democratic nominee, while Republicans have nominated construction worker Patrick Brennan. Throwing a wrench into the mix is Tracy McCreery, a former State Senate aide, who entered the race as an independent after being denied the Democratic nomination. Still, this is a 66-32 Obama district, so it seems unlikely that a vote split would lead to a Republican win.
AD-148 - This is an open Republican seat in the Buffalo suburbs. The nominees are attorney Craig Bucki (D/WF) and Erie County Legislator Raymond Walter (R/Cons/IP). The district went 54-45 Obama in '08.
SD-06 - This seat is drawn around Knoxville, and is solidly Republican (65-35 McCain). Candidates are teacher Gloria Johnson, a Democrat, and nonprofit executive Becky Duncan Massey, a Republican.
HD-14 - A formerly Republican seat in College Station (66-34 McCain), this is, like Georgia, an open primary/runoff situation. One Democrat filed, Judy Webb LeUnes, along with three Republicans, Rebecca Boenigk, John Raney, and Bob Yancy, and a Libertarian, Joshua Baker. And yes, all of the candidates went to Texas A&M (except for the Libertarian, who I couldn't find any information about).
LD-04 (Senate) - Appointed Republican Senator Jeff Baxter is running for the remainder of his term, and faces another Republican, Mike Padden, who is a former State Rep and judge. This seat is in the Spokane area.
LD-49 (House) - Appointed Democratic Rep. Sharon Wylie is also running for the remainder of her term. Her opponent is Republican Craig Riley, a businessman type. This district is in Vancouver, and according to DRA, went for Patty Murray by 9% in 2010.
AD-95 - Rounding out our list is the seat vacated by now-State Sen. Jennifer Shilling. The candidates are LaCrosse County Supervisor Jill Billings, a Democrat, and David Drewes, a Republican who ran for the seat way back in 1994 and lost 2-1.
Whew. I think that's it. Any questions?