Midterm matchups set after Republican primary races in 4 states

Saul Bowman
May 10, 2018

But in IN, the Republican Senate nomination did land with a self-funding businessman who mocked his two main opponents - both sitting House members - as creatures of the establishment who look, vote, and even dress alike.

A day after the controversial Senate candidacy of Don Blankenship was soundly defeated in the West Virginia Republican primary, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell boasted that his strategy paid off.

Blankenship said he doesn't believe the ad cost him votes, "because unlike the media, I think West Virginians understand that "China people" is not different than 'Appalachia people, ' no different than 'West Virginia people'".

But the 64-year-old Braun, who appeared at debates wearing a blue button-down shirt with sleeves rolled up, successfully introduced himself to voters as having built his own business while Messer and Rokita were climbing political ladders. The CEO of automotive products firm Meyer Distributing and a former state representative, Braun prided himself on being a businessman who isn't a creature of Washington. The incumbent easily won the Democratic primary as he seeks his second full six-year term in a race that's widely regarded as one of the best GOP takeover opportunities.

The most bitter primaries are happening in House races, where a flood of candidates have been motivated by the energy of liberal protests against Trump. Gibbons has sued the congressman alleging false and defamatory statements, including that Gibbons is anti-Trump. The tweet comes after the three primary elections in West Virginia, Indiana and Ohio. He will now go up against incumbent Democratic Sen. While they face an uphill battle for the chamber, defending 26 seats to Republicans' nine, they point to a lack of damaging primary battles as an advantage as campaigns move from primaries to the general election.

IN and West Virginia are particularly inviting targets for Republicans seeking to flip a Democratic seat, given Trump's margins of victory in those states and the party's dominance in state government. By itself, Donald Trump's signature legislative achievement remains the most unpopular tax cut in modern American history. Overall, more Democrats voted than Republicans.


Tuesday's win by the former consumer watchdog under President Barack Obama buoys Democratic hopes of reclaiming control of a critical battleground state, where Republican Gov. John Kasich is term-limited.

An Ohio state senator won the Republican primary to succeed retiring Rep.

Morrisey said the general election won't be one filled with personal attacks, but claimed Manchin has become a creature of Washington. On Monday he tweeted: "Don Blankenship, now running for Senate, can't win the General Election in your State.No way! Remember Alabama", tweeted the president, referencing the loss of Republican Roy Moore, who he endorsed.

Former Ohio State University football star Anthony Gonzalez won the Republican nomination to succeed Renacci in U.S. House District 16 following a three-way contest in which state Rep. Christina Hagan aligned herself closely with Trump's agenda. He also said that Morrisey and Jenkins would both need his support to win in November against Manchin. And in central OH, a tea-party-style insurgent came within a few hundred votes of defeating the handpicked favorite of the recently retired Republican congressman, Patrick J. Tiberi, a close ally of House leadership.

In the end, Congressman Jim Renacci, blessed by Trump, came on top in the Republican race, while Richard Cordray, a former bureaucrat, would represent the Democrats in the governor race. An organization called Mountain Families PAC that has ties to McConnell allies ran advertisements criticizing Blankenship, highlighting how badly GOP leaders wanted to defeat him. He will now face Democratic Sen.

"He will be a great Governor with a heavy focus on HealthCare and Jobs", Trump wrote.

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