Critical primaries in four states Tuesday threaten fall elections

On Tuesday, voters in four states will head to the polls to choose congressional and state primary candidates who will face off in contentious races this fall.

The results of close races in Nevada and Maine could determine which party controls the House and Senate next year and, with it, significant power over the agenda of whoever wins the White House in 2024. It is almost certain that elections in South Carolina and North Dakota will determine the winner of the general election in areas with large Republican majorities.

Here’s a look at some of the most competitive and influential races to watch on Tuesday across the country.

Caroline from the south

Rep. Republican. Nancy Macé faces a competitive primary challenge for South Carolina’s 1st Congressional District from former state Cabinet official Catherine Templeton. The race is shaping up to be a proxy fight between the MAGA wing of former President Donald Trump’s Republican Party and establishment conservatives.

It also features one of nearly 20 Republicans who have been mentioned as possible choices for Trump’s vice presidency.

Mace received criticism from GOP members for voting with seven other House Republicans in 2023 to oust then-Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif. McCarthy had supported Mace when she initially ran for Congress in 2020, but the Charleston-area Republican lawmaker argued that McCarthy had failed to deliver on her promises.

The American Prosperity Alliance, a group aligned with McCarthy, ran an ad against Mace In the race. And McCarthy’s political action committee, the Majority Committee PAC, donated $10,000 in rural Templeton.

Templeton, who was head of the state’s Department of Health and Environment under then-Gov. Nikki Haley received support from former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Rep. Joe Wilson, R-S.C.

Mace, meanwhile, has received support from Trump and House Speaker Mike Johnson. But it’s not yet clear how far Trump’s support will extend in his coastal district. While the ex-president won the South Carolina GOP presidential primary, he lost 1st District to Haley by more than 20 points.

Polls from late May showed Mass with double-digit lead on Templeton. However, if she doesn’t get 50% or more of the vote on Tuesday, the race will head to a runoff.

Nevada

The balance of power in the U.S. Senate hinges on a handful of key races in November, including for Democratic Sen. Jacky Rosen’s first-term seat in Nevada.

Democrats currently hold a narrow 51-49 majority in the upper house, but elections like Rosen’s are ripe for Republican upsets.

Rosen is favored to win her primary Tuesday against program director Troy Walker and former California tax official Mike Schaefer.

In the GOP race, retired U.S. Army Capt. Sam Brown faces Jeff Gunter, former ambassador to Iceland during the Trump administration and former Nevada state Rep. Jim Marchant.

Trump posted on Truth Social on Sunday an endorsement for Browna gesture that raised eyebrows because…

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