One round of primaries consolidated political trends took place in the United States this year – with former President Donald Trump tightening his grip on Republicans and Democrats making abortion a central issue of their campaigns.
Voters in New York, Florida and Oklahoma voted on Tuesday, less than three months before November’s general midterm elections that will determine the composition of Congress for the next two years.
Democrats have chosen their nominees to face off against Florida Republican Senator Marco Rubio and Governor Ron DeSantis. The latter has become nationally known and considered a 2024 presidential candidate.
In New York state, a Democratic candidate defeated a Republican opponent in a special election campaign focused on abortion rights.
Here are five key takeaways from the primaries:
A big win for Democrats in New York
Democrat Pat Ryan, a county executive, prevailed in a controversial special election against a Republican candidate in a swing district in Upstate New York.
Ryan’s victory over Republican Marc Molinaro, a neighboring county executive, could signal good news for Democrats in November.
With Tuesday’s results, Ryan will serve the remainder of Democratic Congressman Antonio Delgado’s term until early next year. Delgado had previously vacated the seat after being appointed governor of New York this early year.
But the election takes place not only part of the term in the National Assembly. Ryan, who will run for re-election in a newly drawn county in November, tried to make the election a referendum on abortion – and won.
The race is seen as an early test of the Democrats’ strategy of centralizing reproductive rights in post-conservative elections. United States Supreme Court revoked the constitutional right to abortion in June.
It follows a major victory for abortion rights advocates in Kansas in early August, when the state tilted Republican. voted overwhelmingly to defend rights to the procedure.
“The choice is on the ballot,” Ryan wrote on Twitter early Wednesday, referring to women’s right to control their bodies.
The choice is on the ballot. Freedom was on the ballot, and choice and freedom tonight won. We voted as if our democracy was on the line because it was. We perfected everything we thought we knew about politics and did it together.# NY19I would be honored to serve you in Congress. pic.twitter.com/BsPKlLGqE0
– Pat Ryan (@PatRyanUC) August 24, 2022
Trump-backed Republicans win primaries
Although recently FBI search at home and other continuing legal issues, Trump’s appeal to Republican voters does not appear to be waning.
In this election round, Trump has largely endorsed incumbents who don’t face serious competition on Tuesday. But in the open primaries he has not endorsed, candidates are vying for his support and pledging to support him.
Congressman backed by Trump Matt Gaetzwho is under federal investigation over sexual misconduct allegations that he has vehemently denied, easily resisting a major test.
Anna Paulina Luna, a conservative activist endorsed by Trump, also won a public congressional primary election in a crowded field.
In a county in the Orlando area, US Army veteran Cory Mills – who previously said he doesn’t consider Joe Biden a legitimate president – won the Republican primaries.
That district – which has been redrawn and now leans Republican – is currently represented by Representative Stephanie Murphy, a Democrat of congressional committee is investigating the January 6 riots in the Capitol, who is not seeking re-election.
In a neighboring county, far-right provocateur Laura Loomer, who has a history of anti-Muslim activism, won several thousand votes defeating Republican incumbent Daniel Webster, who won by 51 percent. number of votes. Trump did not confirm in that race.
“Looks like a great evening of ALL WINNERs – Great Candidates!!!” Trump wrote on his platform Truth Social on Wednesday.
Democrats nominate candidates to take on Florida’s top Republicans
As the largest swing state, Florida is one of the most politically important corners in the country.
But the southeastern state has tended to be Republican in recent years. Democrats will try to reverse that trajectory in November when they take on Governor DeSantis and Senator Rubio.
On Tuesday, Congressman Val Demings, a former Orlando police chief who served as House management in Trump’s first impeachment, comfortably winning the Democratic Senate nomination to take on Rubio.
“I am running to serve the people of Florida, and I am running to win,” she said in a social media post after the election results were released.
Charlie Crist, former Republican governor of Florida and current Democratic congressman, who change party in 2014, will try to get my old job back. He won the Democratic gubernatorial nomination with nearly 60% of the vote.
Crist will take on DeSantis, a rising national Republican star who signed a 15-week contract ban abortion this early year.
Crist has promised to sign an executive order protecting reproductive rights on his first day in office if elected. “I’m Charlie Crist and I’m proud your Florida Democratic nominee will beat Ron DeSantis this November,” he wrote on Twitter late Tuesday.
Nadler beat Maloney in New York
In one of the most closely watched primaries, Representative Jerrold Nadler defeated Carolyn Maloney, the House’s powerful counterpart after redistributing the area between them – and it wasn’t close.
Nadler, 75, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, received 55% of the vote. Maloney, the 76-year-old chairman of the House Oversight Committee, got 24%. Suraj Patel, a 38-year-old lawyer, came in third with 19%.
Nadler and Maloney share similar center-left ideologies, so their race does not play out as one between centrists and progressives.
But Nadler had the endorsement of the left-wing Labor Family Party, a large group in progressive electoral politics.
Tuesday’s results will likely end Maloney’s 30-year career in Congress.
“I am grateful for your continued support and trust – I promise to continue to fight for New Yorkers in Congress. Go ahead! ” Nadler said in a tweet on Tuesday.
Former Trump prosecutor wins crowded race in New York
Daniel Goldman, top House Democrat adviser to Trump first impeachment in 2019, narrowly won the crowded congressional primaries on Tuesday.
With the progressive vote in the Deeply Democratic District of New York City divided among several candidates, including incumbent Mondaire Jones and left-wing congresswoman Yuh-Line Niou, Goldman took the lead with 26% number of votes.
Niou was second with 24 percent and Jones third with 18 percent.
The result was a blow to the progressive movement, which has struggled with this cycle to strengthen the ranks of left-wing lawmakers in Congress.
# NY10, From the bottom of my heart, thank you. I am honored to be your Democratic candidate for Congress. I have great respect for the other candidates in this field and look forward to working with them to achieve a shared progressive vision for this city and our democracy.
– Daniel Goldman (@danielsgoldman) August 24, 2022
Elsewhere in New York, Representative Sean Patrick Maloney, chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), easily defeated State Senator Alessandra Biaggi, who was endorsed by Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Fort.
Similarly, Progressive House Jamaal Bowman went to the Democratic Party’s re-nomination for his seat, against two main opponents.