Sunday, April 11, 2021
Sunday, April 11, 2021

2 Republicans opposed by Trump win in N. Carolina, Kentucky

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Voters rebuffed President Donald Trump and nominated two Republicans he opposed to House seats from North Carolina and Kentucky on Tuesday. Calls in higher-profile races in Kentucky and New York faced days of delay as swamped officials count mountains of mail-in ballots.

In western North Carolina, GOP voters picked 24-year-old investor Madison Cawthorn over Trump-backed real estate agent Lynda Bennett. The runoff was for the seat vacated by GOP Rep. Mark Meadows, who resigned to become Trump’s chief of staff and joined his new boss in backing Bennett.

Voters register at their designated precinct to cast their ballot in the Kentucky primary at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville, Ky., Tuesday, June 23, 2020. In an attempt to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, neighborhood precincts were closed and voters that didn’t cast mail in ballots were directed to one central polling location. (AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley)

Kentucky Republican Rep. Thomas Massie, a libertarian-minded maverick who often clashes with GOP leaders, was renominated for a sixth House term. Trump savaged Massie in March as a “disaster for America” who should be ejected from the party after he forced lawmakers to return to Washington during a pandemic to vote on a huge economic relief package.

Cawthorn, who uses a wheelchair following an accident, will meet the constitutionally mandated minimum age of 25 when the next Congress convenes. Cawthorn has said he’s a Trump supporter, and Massie is strongly conservative. Still, their victories were an embarrassment to a president whose own reelection campaign has teetered recently.

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As states ease voting by mail because of the coronavirus pandemic, a deluge of mail-in ballots and glacially slow counting procedures made delays inevitable. That torturous wait seemed a preview of November, when more states will embrace mail-in voting and officials warn that uncertainty over who is the next president could linger for days.

Kentucky usually has 2% of its returns come from mail ballots. This year officials expect that figure to exceed 50%, and over 400,000 mail ballots were returned by Sunday.

New York officials expect the vast majority of votes to be mail ballots this year, compared to their typical 5% share. Counties have until eight days after Election Day to count and release the results of mail ballots, with 1.7 million requested by voters.

In the day’s marquee contests, two African American candidates with campaigns energized by nationwide protests for racial justice were challenging white Democratic establishment favorites for the party’s nominations.

First-term state legislator Charles Booker was hoping a late surge would carry him past former Marine fighter pilot Amy McGrath for the Democratic Senate nomination from Kentucky. And in New York, political newcomer Jamaal Bowman was seeking to derail House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel’s bid for a 17th term.

In Kentucky, many counties including Jefferson, the state’s largest, faced piles of mail-in ballots and reported no results. The Associated Press doesn’t expect to call the McGrath-Booker race until June 30, when Kentucky plans to release additional tallies.

In Kentucky, many counties including Jefferson, the state’s largest, faced piles of mail-in ballots and reported no results. The Associated Press doesn’t expect to call the McGrath-Booker race until June 30, when Kentucky plans to release additional tallies.

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