2022 August Primary Election Results and Analysis | Bricker & Eckler LLP – JDSupra – JD Supra

Ohio held the state’s second Primary Election on August 2, 2022, featuring partisan primaries for State House and Senate candidates and also central committee seats for state political parties. As expected, turnout was low at only 7.93 percent according to the Ohio Secretary of State’s unofficial tallies.

State Senate Primary results[1]

The Ohio Senate featured only a few contested primaries. Senator Nathan Manning (R-North Ridgeville) was the only incumbent facing a primary challenge. Ultimately, Senator Manning prevailed over Kirsten Hill (R-Amherst). In contests for open seats, current State Representative Shane Wilkin (R-Hillsboro) won the Republican nomination for the 17th District. For the minority caucus, Rep. Kent Smith (D-Euclid) defeated former state legislator John Barnes (D-Warrensville) for the 21st District.

As of August 3, the General Election races to watch include the battle for the 3rd District, in mostly suburban Columbus, where Republicans believe they have a pickup opportunity against incumbent Senator Tina Maharath (D-Groveport) with challenger Michele Reynolds (R-Columbus). The race for the 13th District, which consists of Lorain and Huron Counties just west of Cleveland, should be competitive with the new district slightly favoring the Democratic candidate, based on the partisan index, but incumbent Senator Manning has prior electoral experience in competitive swing districts.

Finally, former state legislator Bob Hagan (D-Youngstown) is making a bid to return to the statehouse, challenging Senator Michael Rulli (R-Salem) in the 33rd District, including the Youngstown, Ohio area. This area of Ohio – the Mahoning Valley – is a longtime Democratic stronghold, but since 2016 continues trending more conservative and features two well-known candidates, making the contest for the 33rd District the likely must-watch Senate race this fall.

Below are the State Senate matchups for November’s General Election. Italics denote an incumbent.

State House Primary results[2]

In the Ohio House, multiple incumbents faced challenges, with three legislators losing their Primary Election contests. Rep. Mark Fraizer (R-Newark) lost in what was a 2020 Primary rematch to Thad Clagget (R-Newark). In 2020, the contest was decided by only 307 votes, but last night the margin of victory was over 1,000 votes. Beth Lear (R-Galena) defeated Rep. Shawn Stevens (R-Sunbury). The majority caucus appointed Rep. Stevens to fill the vacancy by former Rep. Rick Carfagna back in March 2022.

On the Democratic side, two sitting Representatives faced off with Rep. Bride Rose Sweeney (D-Cleveland) defeating Rep. Monique Smith (D-North Olmstead).

Many Republican incumbents were challenged as part of an organized “Medical Freedom” movement, fueled by opposition to COVID-19 vaccine mandates, but the incumbents prevailed including Reps. Scott Lipps (R-Franklin), Rep. Brian Lampton (R-Fairborn), and Rep. Susan Manchester (R-Lakeview), among others.

Looking ahead to the General Election, many members will be tested in competitive races under the new districts. Contests to watch, based on the partisan indexes of the district, include contests for the 17th, 23rd, 28th, 39th, 42nd, 49th and 89th districts. Additional competitive races could emerge as the races evolve.

Here are the General Election matchups for the Ohio House. Italics denote an incumbent.

Conclusion

With under 100 days left until the November 8 General Election, Ohio’s campaign season is now completely underway. All of Ohio’s statewide constitutional offices are contested, as well as the partisan balance of the Ohio Supreme Court. Ohio Republicans look to retain all of Ohio’s statewide seats, the Supreme Court majority, and perhaps add to legislative majorities by capitalizing on voter concerns with inflation and the economy.

Ohio Democrats, however, hope that voters are mobilized by the United States Supreme Court decision regarding abortion rights in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, pointing to Tuesday’s results in Kansas on a statewide ballot measure concerning abortion.

Elections in Ohio are never dull and are almost always interesting and competitive. 2022 seems to be on the same track and will include the high profile United States Senate race between author J.D. Vance (R) and Congressman Tim Ryan (D), which could factor into which party gains majority control in Washington, D.C.

We will continue to update this information and outline significant changes and updates as the campaigns continue.


[1] All results are unofficial as of the date of this summary.

[2] All results are unofficial as of the date of this summary.

[3] As of the writing of this summary, this race remains too close to call.

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