Trump's Sway Tested in Primaries Across Country as Dr. Oz Behind in PA

Live Updates
  • Voters in Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Kentucky, Idaho and Oregon cast primary ballots that further set the stage for the 2022 midterm election.
  • The primary was another test for the influence former President Donald Trump still holds in the Republican Party. Tuesday was a mixed bag for Trump. Ted Budd, his pick in the North Carolina Senate race, prevailed and will face Cheri Beasley in November. But Trump's endorsement wasn't enough for other candidates.
  • In a more dramatic turn, Trump-endorsed Representative Madison Cawthorn conceded his primary race to state Senator Chuck Edwards in the North Carolina Republican primary. Plagued by controversies, Cawthorn's loss means an end to his tumultuous first-term.
  • The most-watched race tonight could be the GOP Senate race in Pennsylvania where Trump-backed Dr. Mehmet Oz faces David McCormick and Kathy Barnette. However, the race remained too close to call Tuesday evening.
  • Whoever prevails will square off with Pennsylvania Lieutenant Governor John Fetterman, who easily won the Democratic Senate primary while in the hospital to have surgery for pacemaker implanted. Associated with the party's progressive wing, Fetterman's race could be a pickup for Democrats in an otherwise difficult year.
  • Elsewhere, Idaho Governor Brad Little was ahead of his lieutenant governor, who is challenging him with Trump's backing. Incumbent Kentucky Republican Senator Rand Paul won his primary and will face Democratic state Representative Charles Booker this November.
Primary Election
A vote sign is seen at Lower Dauphin High School on May 17, 2022 in Hummelstown, Pennsylvania. Pennsylvanians are voting in the primary elections to select candidates from each party for a new governor, lieutenant governor, U.S. senator, and U.S representative. Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images

Pennsylvania GOP Senate Race Remains Unsettled

No clear winner has emerged from Pennsylvania's Republican primary hours after polls had closed.

David McCormick, a former hedge fund manager and Bush administration official, maintained a narrow lead with 31.6 percent of the vote Tuesday evening, according to the official count.

Behind him was Donald Trump-backed Dr. Mehmet Oz with 31.2 percent of the vote. Roughly 5,000 votes separate the two. Conservative commentator Kathy Barnette remained in third with 24.3 percent.

With election officials still counting ballots, no candidate has conceded the race and no news network has projected a winner.

Idaho Gov Ahead of Far-Right Challenger

Idaho Republican Governor Brad Little on Tuesday night held a commanding lead over his lieutenant governor, Janice McGeachin, who is challenging his reelection bid.

The initial vote count put Little at 70 percent of the vote in Idaho's Republican primary for governor to McGeachin's 20 percent. Backed by former President Donald Trump, McGeachin has attended a "white nationalist" conference and has been accused of having ties to other far-right groups.

While the vote count isn't final, a loss by McGeachin would point to the limits of Trump's sway in the Republican party. Earlier in the evening, Representative Madison Cawthorn lost his primary race despite Trump's backing. In Pennsylvania, Trump pick Mehmet Oz remained in second place as that race continued beyond midnight.

Trump-Backed Oz Losing Tight, Key Race

Dr. Mehmet Oz continues to lag in the Pennsylvania's Republican Senate primary, despite having the backing of former President Donald Trump.

With more than two hours since the polls closed, Oz remains stuck at second place behind businessman David McCormick. Oz, a television personality who was recently a resident of New Jersey, is currently at 31 percent.

McCormick, who has the backing of Texas Senator Ted Cruz and others, remains ahead with 32 percent of the vote. Roughly 5,000 votes separate the two. Conservative commentator Kathy Barnette remains in third with 23 percent.

Trump's endorsement helped propel J.D. Vance to victory in the Ohio Republican Senate primary, and his Senate pick in North Carolina, Ted Budd, prevailed Tuesday. However, Trump's endorsed candidate for Nebraska governor lost last week.

Biden Warmly Backs Fetterman, is Silent on Beasley

President Joe Biden quickly threw his support behind John Fetterman, following his win in Pennsylvania's Democratic Senate primary. However, Biden has been less vocal about Cheri Beasley's victory in North Carolina.

Following his primary victory, Biden posted on a statement on Twitter saying that electing Fetterman "would be a big step forward for Pennsylvania's working people." Biden also took aim at the Republican candidates running for the seat, none of which had a clear victory Tuesday evening.

"They have fought a malicious, chaotic primary campaign to be the most extreme," wrote Biden. "And they have shown people their authentic selves—that whoever emerges will be too dangerous, too craven, and too extreme to represent Pennsylvania in the United States Senate."

However, absent from Biden's Twitter feed on primary night was any mention of Beasley, who handily won her primary race in North Carolina and is expected to face Republican Ted Budd.

Biden won his native state of Pennsylvania in 2020, which is considered a potential pickup for Democrats in the 2022 midterm. However, North Carolina, which Biden lost, is expected to be a tougher race.

Doug Mastriano Wins Pennsylvania GOP Governor's Race

Doug Mastriano has won the Pennsylvania race for the Republican gubernatorial candidacy, as called by CNN on Tuesday night.

Mastriano is a retired U.S. Army colonel and a state senator in Pennsylvania's 33rd District.

No Clear Winner in Penn GOP Senate Race So Far

The Republican nominee for Pennsylvania's open Senate seat remains unsettled an hour after polls closed in the state.

Businessman David McCormick lead the field of seven candidates with 32 percent of the vote, according to the most recent count. Behind him was television personality Dr. Mehmet Oz who had about 25 percent of the vote despite having former President Donald Trump's coveted endorsement.

In third is conservative commentator Kathy Barnette who emerged as a frontrunner, despite Trump's misgiving about her electability.

Hospital-Ridden Fetterman Wins Pennsylvania Race

After spending election day in the hospital, John Fetterman is ahead in Pennsylvania's Democratic Senate primary.

Early returns show Fetterman, the state's lieutenant governor, with a wide lead of 57 percent of the vote to Representative Conor Lamb's 36 percent.

Fetterman's campaign said earlier Tuesday that he would be undergoing surgery for a pacemaker after he suffered a stroke a week ago that was caused by a blood clot.

"John Fetterman just completed a successful procedure to implant a pacemaker with a defibrillator," his campaign told Newsweek in a statement. "The procedure began at 3:15 p.m., John was released at 5:56 p.m., and he has been given the all-clear that it was successful. He is resting at the hospital and recovering well. John continues to improve every day, and he is still on track for a full recovery."

Ted Budd Wins North Carolina Republican Senate Primary

Representative Ted Budd has won the Republican nomination for Senate in North Carolina.

Both CNN and The Associated Press have called the race for Budd, who was earlier endorsed by former President Donald Trump.

The most recent vote count put Budd at 56 percent of the vote, with his nearest challenger, former Governor Pat McCrory, trailing at 26.74 percent of the vote.

Cheri Beasley Wins North Carolina Democratic Senate Primary

Cheri Beasley is projected to win the Democratic nomination for Senate in North Carolina.

Both CNN and The Associated Press have called the race for Beasley, the former state Supreme Court chief justice who would be the first Black person to represent the state in the Senate.

Early Returns Show Madison Cawthorn Lagging

Representative Madison Cawthorn has fallen behind his main rival for the Republican nomination for North Carolina's 11th House District.

Former state Senator Chuck Edwards leads Cawthorn with nearly 38 percent of the vote, ahead of Cawthorn's 27 percent. About 4,000 votes separate the two. The rest of the votes are split between six other candidates vying for the Republican nomination. Just over 7 percent of ballots cast have been counted.

Cawthorn, 26, became the youngest person ever elected to Congress in 2020. Since being elected, he has attracted attention for inflammatory remarks and scandals that include trying to board an airplane with a gun. Cawthorn has the endorsement of former President Donald Trump.

Booker, Paul Win Kentucky Primaries

The general election match-up for Kentucky's Senate race is set as the frontrunners have prevailed in their respective primaries.

State Representative Charles Booker has won the Democratic primary and will run against Republican incumbent Rand Paul, according to The Associated Press.

Both candidates were favored to easily win their primaries over other candidates with less name recognition and support.

Booker, who has aligned himself with his party's left-wing, has nearly 77 percent of the vote with about 9 percent of ballots counted, according to CNN's vote count. Paul, who is running for his third term, has nearly 87 percent.

Here's When Polls Close in Tuesday's Primary Elections

In a matter of hours, primary election polls will close (or have already closed) in five states spanning four times zones.

In Kentucky, polls closed at 6 p.m. in both the Eastern and Central time zones that divide the eastern and western parts of the state after opening at 6 a.m.

North Carolina will close its polls next at 7:30 p.m. Eastern time, after opening at 6:30 a.m. Pennsylvania will follow at 8 p.m. after opening at 7 a.m.

In Idaho, which is divided by the Pacific and Mountain time zones, polls close at 8 p.m. local time after opening at 8 a.m. Next door in Oregon, polls close at 8 p.m. in the vote-by-mail state.

Final Election Results in Kentucky Could be Slow Coming

Finding out who won Kentucky's primary races may take some patience.

County election staff will start counting ballots after polls close at 6 p.m. Tuesday. But updates in races won't be posted in many counties and will instead come later, reports The Cincinnati Enquirer.

That's because Kentucky election officials have opted to build their own programs instead of contracting with Spanish-based tech company Scytl for election night reporting software. Some counties will take a more analog approach, posting updates at the local courthouse.

Officials said they were unsure how much longer this new process will take.

Kentucky Secretary of State Michael Adams said on Twitter Tuesday that the state will use paper ballots that will "give us the speed of a quick count, plus the security of a paper trail."

He also reminded voters that Kentucky voting machines do not connect to the internet.

Fetterman Remains in Hospital on Primary Night for 'Standard' Surgery

John Fetterman, the frontrunner in Pennslyvania's Democratic primary for Senate, will spend Tuesday night in the hospital, where he will undergo surgery to implant a pacemaker.

Fetterman, the state's lieutenant governor, was rushed to the hospital last week for emergency surgery to remove a blood clot after showing signs of a stroke.

Since then, he's said he's doing well and hasn't suffered any cognitive damage.
His campaign told NBC affiliate WCAU that the surgery to install the heart beat-regulating device could come as soon as Tuesday afternoon.

"John Fetterman is about to undergo a standard procedure to implant a pacemaker with a defibrillator," his campaign said in a statement Tuesday afternoon. "It should be a short procedure that will help protect his heart and address the underlying cause of his stroke, atrial fibrillation (A-fib), by regulating his heart rate and rhythm."

The surgery typically takes a few hours and requires another day in the hospital, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Fetterman posted a picture to Twitter of himself casting an emergency absentee ballot from the Penn Medicine Lancaster General Hospital.

Printing Error Will Delay Vote Count in Pennsylvania's Lancaster County

The results of Tuesday's primary in Pennsylvania's sixth-largest county will be delayed due to a printing error on ballots.

Ray D'Agostino, chair of the Lancaster County Board of Commissioners, said in a Facebook post that the problem was discovered Tuesday morning when election workers began the "precanvas process," opening and scanning mail-in ballots. NPC, the vendor hired by the county, printed the ballots with the wrong identification code, making them unscannable by the county, he said

After conferring with both major parties, D'Agostino said the county is moving forward with a plan to remark and scan all affected ballots. He did not provide a timeline of when the county would have a final vote tally.

In the 2020 election, Pennsylvania's results weren't called until days after polls closed because election workers needed more time to count mail-in ballots. Former President Donald Trump handily won the county, located just west of Philadelphia, in both 2016 and 2020.

D'Agostino said the county would hold the vendor responsible. But he also said a 2019 change to the state law has complicated election responsibilities of counties, creating too many short deadlines and not allowing them to take steps to spot foul-ups earlier, like the one Lancaster County currently faces.

"It causes significant delays," he said in his post. "It causes citizens to question why it takes so long to get results."