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The 2018 midterm election schedule, primaries, and key dates

Work in progress wikiguide to the midterms. Help wanted!

Let’s try to make sense of the midterm elections. Share links to relevant voter guides, summaries, explainers, and major news events below.

The 2018 midterm elections, contexualized:

  • Everything you need to know about the 2018 midterm elections (NBC News)
  • What to Keep in Mind When Thinking About the Midterms (New York Times)
  • A guide to the 2018 midterm elections (Vox)
  • What you need to know right now about the 2018 midterm elections (CNN)
  • To Reclaim the House, Democrats Need to Flip 24 G.O.P. Seats. 25 Are in Clinton Territory. (New York Times)

Primary Briefing Guides

  • June 12: Maine, Nevada, North Dakota, South Carolina, Virginia Primaries
    • Primary Elections 2018: Five states are holding primaries on Tuesday: Nevada, Virginia, Maine, South Carolina and North Dakota. (New York Times)
    • Every June 12 primary election you should know about, briefly explained (Vox)
    • Virginia, Nevada, South Carolina, North Dakota. (FiveThirtyEight)

2018 Midterm Polls, Predictions, and Explainers

2018 Primary and Runoff Key Dates

Date Primary
February 27 Arizona special House Primaries
March 6 Texas Primaries
March 13 Pennsylvania PA-18 Special Election
March 20 Illionois Primaries
May 8 Indiana, North Carolina, Ohio, West Virginia Primaries
May 15 Idaho, Nebraska, Oregon, Pennsylvania Primaries
May 22 Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky Primaries
June 5 Alabama, California, Iowa, Mississippi, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, South Dakota Primaries
June 12 Maine, Nevada, North Dakota, South Carolina, Virginia Primaries
June 19 District of Columbia Primary; Arkansas Primaries Runoff
June 26 Colorado, Maryland, New York, Oklahoma, Utah Primaries; Mississippi, South Carolina, Primaries Runoff
July 17 Alabama, North Carolina Primaries Runoff
July 24 Georgia Primaries Runoff
August 2 Tennessee Primaries
August 7 Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, Washington Primaries; OH-12 special election
August 11 Hawaii Primaries
August 14 Connecticut, Minnesota, Vermont, Wisconsin Primaries; South Dakota Primaries Runoff
August 21 Alaska, Wyoming Primaries
August 28 Arizona, Florida Primaries; Oklahoma Primaries Runoff
September 4 Massachusetts Primaries
September 6 Delaware Primaries
September 11 New Hampshire Primaries
September 12 Rhode Island Primaries
November 6 Lousiana Primaries

Primary Recaps

  • June 12:
    • Primary Takeaways. (New York Times)
    • Democrats Score Special Election Upset In Wisconsin District Trump Won Big. A court had to order Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker ® to call the special election because he tried to block it. (HuffPost)
    • Democrats Flip Another Wisconsin Seat, Making 43 Since Trump Inauguration. The victory follows other surprise wins by the party in conservative districts in the state this year. (Daily Beast)
    • Democrats just won a Wisconsin special election Scott Walker didn’t want to have. It’s another round of big wins for Democrats in the Badger State. (Vox)
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I love you for this considering the fact that my state’s primary is today and I didn’t start researching candidates until… uh… now.


This is a good guideline to see where the political bubbles are. RED v BLUE. This was for 2016 election.

Lost voter rolls, confusion and mismanagement…an article by Ari Berman. NY State’s primary today looked like a mess.

While it was not immediately clear how widespread this problem was or why it occurred, New York has some of the worst voting laws in the country. Unlike 37 states, New York has no early voting. Unlike 27 states, it requires people seeking an absentee ballot to provide an excuse, under penalty of perjury, for why they will not be present on Election Day. Unlike 15 states, it doesn’t have Election Day registration. And unlike 14 states, it doesn’t have automatic voter registration.

To vote in Thursday’s primaries, people had to register with a party by October 13, 2017, 11 months before the election. As a result of this antiquated system, New York routinely ranks near the bottom of the country in voter turnout. In 2016, the same year it ranked 42nd in voter turnout, the board of elections in Brooklyn admitted it had wrongly purged 120,000 registered voters from the rolls.

Entrenched forces in both parties are to blame for preserving the status quo. Republicans, who control the state senate, have blocked numerous efforts to make it easier to vote, while Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, has not pushed aggressively to reform the system. Earlier this year, the legislature stripped funds for early voting from the state budget.


Some Republican voters believe the “blue wave” is “fake news” and are staying home this cycle. :smirk:

America First Action, a political committee aligned with Mr. Trump, conducted a series of focus groups over the summer and concluded the party had a severe voter-turnout problem, brought on in part by contentment about the economy and a refusal by Republicans to believe that Democrats could actually win the midterm elections.

Conservative-leaning voters in the study routinely dismissed the possibility of a Democratic wave election, with some describing the prospect as “fake news,” said an official familiar with the research, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the data was not intended to be disclosed. Breaking that attitude of complacency is now the Republicans’ top priority, far more than wooing moderates with gentler messaging about economic growth.


Voter rolls - 700,000 names removed from Georgia’s rolls.

Nine states with a history of racial discrimination are more aggressively removing registered voters from their rolls than other states, according to a report released Friday.

After reviewing voter purges nationally from 2012 to 2016, the nonpartisan Brennan Center for Justice found that the mostly Southern jurisdictions that had once been required to get changes to voting policies pre-approved by the Justice Department had higher rates of purging than jurisdictions that were not previously subject to pre-clearance.

A key section of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, which was designed to protect minority voters from state disenfranchisement, was struck down by the Supreme Court in 2013, allowing states to begin making changes affecting voting without first getting federal approval.

In Georgia, for example, 156 of the state’s 159 counties reported an increase in removal rates after the Voting Rights Act was changed. In 2016, advocates sued Georgia for making voter registration harder. In 2017, the American Civil Liberties Union sued a Georgia county and the state Secretary of State for its purge practices, too.

There’s cause for concern when the purge rate goes up this much at the same time we’re seeing controversial, sometimes illegal voter purge practice, in addition to changes to other voting laws that make it more difficult to participate,” said Jonathan Brater, counsel for the Brennan Center’s Democracy Program and one of the report’s authors.


WOW…dirty tricks gambit exposed. It was a small donation - less than $40 but was done by some R’s posing as Communists in an attempt to smear the Dem Candidate.

Arizona Republicans Pose as Communists to Make Illegal Donation to Democrat Congressman Tom O’Halleran’s Campaign

Two men affiliated with the Arizona Republican Party attempted to make a campaign donation to a Democratic congressman while posing a communists in an apparent sting attempt.

Two men, believed members of the Northern Arizona University Republicans, attempted to give $39.68 to the campaign office of Democrat Tom O’Halleran while desperately seeking a receipt for the money for the Northern Arizona University Communist party, reports The Guardian.

They pair are believed to have wanted to make a donation in the name of the communist party in order to smear the Democrat O’Halleran by associating him with the far-left.

The men used the aliases Jose Rosales and Ahmahd Sadia while attempting to make the donation. When they were informed that they would only get an emailed receipt for the donation, “Rosales” scratched out one email and wrote another in while filling out the required paperwork.

After becoming suspicious of the pair, O’Halleran’s campaign team then posted a video of Lindsey Coleman, the finance director for the campaign, returning the cash to the Arizona Republican party headquarters in person.

“I am here because two young gentlemen made this contribution to our campaign,” Coleman said as she arrived at the front desk. At this point the man who allegedly called himself Rosales comes out from behind a door, with another man behind the desk informing Coleman that his real name is Oscar.

Coleman, who appears to recognize Oscar, then described how Oscar “gave the donation under the name of Jose, which I might also add it illegal to falsify contribution information.” Coleman adds she will “probably report this to the police.”


If you’re looking for close races where your contributions can make a crucial difference, here’s a good resource.

House races:

Scroll down to the map and hover your mouse over the gray hexagons – those are the “toss up” races where the blue team can use your support!

Senate Races:

Act Blue is one of the easiest ways to make a donation of $5 and up – check the sofa for loose change! :couch_and_lamp: :hugs:

Side note: I may not be posting as much in the coming weeks – no, I haven’t lost interest or become discouraged. Just the opposite: I’m energized to do my part as we “Flip the 49th” – that’s our motto here in CA-49 where we are going to send Mike Levin (D) to congress. It’s an uphill battle in a traditional red district, but we will prevail!

So that’s where my focus will be until November 6. As Kamala Harris told us in her inspiring speech last week:

Take the power!


Brian Kemp, Georgia Secretary of State and the Republican nominee for Georgia governor, expressed at a ticketed campaign event that his Democratic opponent Stacey Abrams’ voter turnout operation “continues to concern us, especially if everybody uses and exercises their right to vote,” according to audio obtained by Rolling Stone.

An attendee of the “Georgia Professionals for Kemp” event says they recorded 21 minutes and 12 seconds of the evening, held last Friday at the Blind Pig Parlour Bar near Atlanta’s Buckhead neighborhood. As proof of their attendance, the source shared with Rolling Stone a receipt of their donation, which granted access to the gathering.


“Democracy is all well and good until you give it to the people.” Can’t recall who said this, but I’m sure Kemp would agree. :unamused:


This is some excellent reporting, but I would make one change. Here’s my take on what I think the headline should be:

Trump, the Coward, Will Only Visit States Where House Repubs Are Already Sure To Win

In his final blitz, Trump is going to Trump country within Trump states. Not a single competitive House seat lies within these locations.

Trump is “going to the places where he remains popular, more rural or exurban, and he’s staying away from big cities that have suburbs where he’s toxic,” [said The Cook Political Report’s elections analyst, Amy Walter].

Translation: Trump doesn’t give a damn about the election, he just wants to bask in the adulation of his base.

This is consistent with Trump’s past campaigning. How often has he swooped in at the last minute with an endorsement for a candidate where the race was already in the bag? And then he crows about his incredible “winning” track record. He’s like a slimy guy who tries to impress his friends by nailing all the Jeopardy questions – then they find out he’s seen the episode before.


Here’s a fun and interesting article about why we may experience an excruciatingly long wait before we know the true outcome of the midterms. I, for one, will be “sleep loading” the day before, then staying up all night doing espresso shots. I promise not to operate heavy machinery. :coffee: :flushed:

If you plan to stay awake on election night until you know the outcome of every race — or even until you know who controls the House and Senate — you may need to buy a lot more coffee.

An unusual number of key races are expected to be nail-biters, which often take a while to sort out. Quirky rules and procedures may prolong other races. And you can be sure that somewhere on Nov. 6, something that never happens will occur — and will delay the count in some unlucky jurisdiction.

Here are some ways Election Day could turn into Election Week, Election Month or longer. :interrobang:


Many Americans feel disaffected and disconnected from the system. But a single vote can make a big difference. In fact, there have been more than a dozen races decided by a single vote or ended in a tie over the last 20 years.


A dropping out of the Green Party candidate, in Arizona could help Kyrsten Sinema, Dem candidate for Senate. These types of changes can have a big impact on the vote count.


NYTimes: Brian Kemp’s Office, Without Citing Evidence, Investigates Georgia Democrats Over Alleged ‘Hack’

Now, in what Democrats said was a desperate attempt to deflect attention just two days before a crucial midterm election, Mr. Kemp used his official position Sunday to announce, with scant evidence, that the Democrats were under investigation for allegedly trying to hack the state’s voter registration files.

Democrats immediately denounced the claim as bogus and called it an abuse of power.

In perhaps the most outrageous example of election administration partisanship in the modern era, Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp, who is running for governor while simultaneously in charge of the state’s elections, has accused the Democratic Party without evidence of hacking into the state’s voter database. He plastered a headline about it on the Secretary of State’s website, which thousands of voters use to get information about voting on election day.

It’s just the latest in a series of partisan moves by Kemp, who has held up more than 50,000 voter registrations for inconsistencies as small as a missing hyphen, fought rules to give voters a chance to prove their identities when their absentee ballot applications are rejected for a lack of a signature match, and been aggressive in prosecuting those who have done nothing more than try to help those in need of assistance in casting ballots.

But the latest appalling move by Kemp to publicly accuse the Democrats of hacking without evidence is even worse than that: Kemp has been one of the few state election officials to refuse help from the federal Department of Homeland Security to deter foreign and domestic hacking of voter registration databases. After computer scientists demonstrated the insecurity of the state’s voting system, he was sued for having perhaps the most vulnerable election system in the country. His office has been plausibly accused of destroying evidence, which would have helped to prove the vulnerabilities of the state election system.


T’s efforts to sway his base, may have cost some R’s their house seats.

Two days out from an expected Democratic takeover of the House, Republicans focused on the chamber are profoundly worried that Trump’s obsession with all things immigration will exacerbate their losses. Many of these same Republicans welcomed Trump’s initial talk about the migrant caravan and border security two weeks ago, hoping it would gin up the GOP base in some at-risk, Republican-held districts.

But they now fear Trump went overboard — and that it could cost them dearly in key suburban districts, from Illinois to Texas


Pamela Aguirre is a superstar! It’s voters like her who will boot Trump out of office and bring our country back together.


For anyone out there staying up into the wee hours (:coffee:), HuffPost has put together an excellent, continuously updated midterms returns page – the info-graphics can bring you up-to-speed at a glance:


It is SO COMPLEX deciphering these races…The HuffPost one is very comprehensive, but I like the Guardian one…a bit less detailed but has enough to capture the big notes (wins/losses).