Trump’s politics remain firmly rooted — and deeply influential — in almost every GOP race around the country, but the measure of his personal influence has taken a hit so far this primary season.
Alabamians picked the Republican he endorsed just 10 days ago in a high-stakes Senate primary runoff decided on Tuesday, but the limits of Trump’s power were clear in Georgia, a state he lost in 2020, where GOP voters have dealt him a string of embarrassing rebukes in primaries for this year’s midterms.
The latest blows came Tuesday in a pair of US House primary runoffs.
Trump picks Jake Evans, the former chairman of the State Ethics Commission, will also fall to emergency room physician Rich McCormick in the 6th Congressional District runoff, CNN projects.
The mostly rural district is majority Black and Hunt, who is Black, has become a favorite of national Republicans, with the National Republican Congressional Committee spotlighting him as an up-and-comer and former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley joining him on the campaign trail.
Earlier this spring, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, who rebuked Trump’s entreaties to help him overturn the 2020 presidential election, defeated Trump-backed primary picks.
Alabama Republicans go with establishment in Senate runoff
Trump did get a win of sorts in Alabama on Tuesday, where CNN projects Katie Britt, the former chief of staff to retiring Republican GOP Sen. Richard Shelby, will win the GOP Senate primary runoff.
Republicans pick nominees for key Virginia US House races
The battle lines are clearer in Virginia as Republicans in two key swing US House districts chose the candidates they hope will unseat a pair of endangered Democratic congresswomen this fall.
CNN projects Yesli Vega, a Prince William County supervisor, will win the GOP nomination in the 7th District. She had the endorsement of Ginni Thomas, a conservative activist who’s the wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.
Vega emerged from the six-candidate field, defeating state Sen. Bryce Reeves, who was supported by Utah Sen. Mike Lee, FreedomWorks’ political arm and the campaign arm of the National Rifle Association; Derrick Anderson, retired Green Beret backed by Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton; and Stafford County Board Chair Crystal Vanuch.
Abrams’ influence shows in Georgia Democratic runoffs
Democratic gubernatorial nominee Stacey Abrams’ influence with Georgia Democrats was further solidified on Tuesday, as at least two of her endorsed statewide candidates won their primary runoffs.
CNN is also projecting that in the primary runoff for lieutenant governor, another Abrams endorsee, Charlie Bailey, will defeat Kwanza Hall, a better-known candidate who briefly served as a member of Congress in the late Rep. John Lewis’ district. Abrams also endorsed state Rep. William Boddie in his race against businesswoman Nicole Horn in the labor commissioner primary runoff.
Washington, DC, was also a political battleground in the Democratic mayoral primary. Two-term Mayor Muriel Bowser will win the nomination again, CNN projects, defeating three challengers: DC Council members Robert White and Trayon White, along with James Butler, who finished second in the 2018 primary — about 70 percentage points behind Bowser.
This story has been updated with additional developments.