Note: This is an abridged version of the Tracker, for the full report click here.
On July 26, 2012, Ballotpedia released a preliminary study, Primary Change: Anti-Incumbency Voting Patterns in State Legislative Primaries, which looked at the results of primaries through the first few months of 2012 elections. The study concluded that with nearly 50 percent of primaries completed, the rate of success for challengers against incumbents in contested primaries was nearly double that of 2010. Through July 26, 76 incumbents had fallen to challengers in 513 contested races — a rate of 14.8 percent.
There will be 6,015 state legislative seats up for election in 2012. Thus far, a total of 2,930 seats have held primaries, which accounts for 48.7 percent of the seats that will be up for election this presidential year.
Of the 76 incumbents that have lost a primary in 2012, 22 are Democratic incumbents and 54 are Republican incumbents.
The 14.8 percent of incumbents who have lost a primary in 2012 is 76.7 percent higher than the 8.38 percent in 2010. Twelve of the 76 incumbents defeated this year lost to a fellow incumbent in districts whose boundaries were changed through redistricting. Even subtracting these incumbents, the rate of defeats in 2012 is higher than in 2010.
- See the full study here
Indiana Dems change leaders
Bauer had served in the post since 2002 and did not attend the vote. He first learned of the news from Twitter posts by reporters who were outside of the meeting. He stated, “I didn’t like the way they went about this process. I thought it was pretty ugly. But they came out with a good person to move on, somebody I felt would be a good floor leader. So they emulated my choice for a leader.”
This week 2 out of 50 state legislatures - Ohio and Massachusetts - are meeting in regular session. As of May 16, all states had convened their 2012 sessions. No states are projected to adjourn this week.
Click here to see a chart of each state’s 2012 session information.
In 2011, special sessions were a widespread occurrence in state legislatures. This was largely due to states’ having to complete theredistricting process for legislative and congressional districts. Overall in 2011, there were 45 special sessions in 28 states.
Since the beginning of 2012, there have been 16 special sessions in 13 states. There is one special session currently ongoing in New Jersey.
The New Jersey General Assembly is meeting in special session today in order to attempt to bypass a recent ruling of the state Supreme Court. In a 3-2 decision on July 24, the Court ruled that judges and justices, unlike other state employees, do not have to make additional contributions for pension and health benefits as the state Constitution does not allow their pay to be cut.
In reaction, the Legislature is taking up a resolution that would ask voters to change the constitution in order to give lawmakers the power to reduce judicial salaries.
2012 Legislative Elections
A total of 86 of the 99 chambers will hold state legislative elections on November 6, 2012.
1,301 (65.97%) of the country’s 1,972 state senate seats are up for election in November 2012, and 4,714 (87.12%) of the country’s 5,411 state house seats are up for election. Altogether, 6,015 (81.47%) of the country’s 7,383 state legislative seats will be up for election during the presidential election year.
- 43 of the 50 state senates are holding elections.
- 43 of the 49 state houses are holding elections.
The 6,015 seats up for election is 110 fewer than the 6,125 that were contested in 2010.
As of July 12, all signature filing deadlines have passed.
- See also: 2012 election dates
So far, primaries have taken place in 24 states.
So far in 2012 there have been 28 special elections in 12 states.
There are no special election scheduled to take place this week.