Candidates across the country are securing their spots on the ballot as voters decide who they would like to support in the upcoming general election on Tuesday, Nov. 8. After over seven months of blazing campaign trails, conversations surrounding abortion rights, inflation, gun restrictions, climate change and COVID-19 appear to be at the forefront of the minds of Americans, according to data from the Pew Research Center.
There are 469 seats in the U.S Congress up for re-election, including 34 seats in the Senate and all 435 seats in the House of Representatives. One of the two special Senate elections taking place will be in California. In addition to the regular seat, the Senate seat filled by Sen. Alex Padilla since being vacated by Vice President Kamala Harris is up for re-election.
Gianna Daniels-Lajon, a student at Howard University from Orlando, Florida, is excited to vote in the upcoming general election, a highly-watched battle between Trump-endorsed Republican incumbent Ron DeSantis and Democratic challenger Charlie Crist.
“I am honestly worried because you see a lot of red states putting laws into place that are going to negatively affect minorities,” Daniels-Lajon said.
Justin Adams, a Howard University Enterprise Technology Services (ETS) employee from Atlanta is looking forward to seeing the rematch between Gov. Brian Kemp and Democratic challenger Stacey Abrams.
“It’s basically round two…I think that the fact that she has a chance to win it again speaks to a lot of people who believe in what she represents, so things are going to be interesting,” Adams said.
Additionally, states are adjusting to the reallocation of seats in the House of Representatives as six states (Colorado, Florida, Montana, North Carolina, Oregon and Texas) gained seats and seven states (California, Illinois, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia) lost seats due to population changes, as determined by the U.S Census Bureau.
While there are still a few states left to cast their ballots in this year’s cycle of primary elections, these races will determine which party will soon have control of the Senate and House of Representatives. Here is a breakdown of the races to watch as the general election approaches.
Alabama: Republican candidate Katie Britt secured the highly sought after Republican nomination and will face Democratic challenger Will Boyd. As she leads her challengers by healthy margins, Gov. Kay Ivey is seeking a second term in office.
Alaska: Republican incumbent Gov. Mike Dunleavy leads his challengers for the governor’s seat in the state’s open primary.
Arizona: Democratic candidate Katie Hobbs will likely face Republican candidate Kari Lake for the seat for governor.
Arkansas: Sen. John Boozman prevailed in the deep-red state for the Republican nomination for Senate, while Sarah Huckabee Sanders secured the nomination for governor.
California: In the open primary for governor, incumbent Democrat Gavin Newsome leads his Republican challenger Brian Dahle in what seems to be a favored re-election for the popular candidate. In addition to the special election, Sen. Alex Padilla faces challenger Mark Meuser for the next full term in the Senate.
Colorado: In the race for U.S Senate, Joe O’Dea has secured the GOP nomination and will face Democratic incumbent Michael Bennet, who ran his primary uncontested.
Connecticut: Incumbent Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal will likely face Republican Leora Levy as they fight for the Senate seat.
Delaware: On Sept. 13, in the race for the state’s only seat in the House of Representatives, Republican Lee Murphy hopes to beat Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester, to whom he lost the 2020 election.
District of Columbia: Mayor Muriel Bowser is seeking re-election after beating many Democratic challengers and will likely face Republican candidate Stacia Hall in November.
Florida: Republican incumbent Gov. Ron DeSantis will defend his seat against Democratic challenger Charlie Crist.
Georgia: Incumbent Gov. Brian Kemp will face Stacey Abrams in November for a second time, after the two battled for the same position in the previous election. All eyes are on the Georgia seat for Senate as Republican candidate Herschel Walker will fight for a seat against current Senator Raphael Warnock.
Hawaii: Democratic candidate Josh Green will face Republican candidate Duke Aiona as they battle to win the governor’s seat. Incumbent Sen. Brian Schatz will defend his seat against Republican challenger Bob McDermott.
Idaho: Gov. Brad Little has secured the Republican nomination over Lt. Gov. Janice McGeachin, who was endorsed by former President Donald Trump.
Illinois: Republican candidate Darren Bailey leads his challengers in the race for the Governor seat. Incumbent Tammy Duckworth will defend her seat in the U.S. Senate against Republican challenger Kathy Salvi.
Indiana : Rep. Erin Houchin secured the Republican nomination for the only seat up for re-election in the House of Representatives as it is being vacated by retiring Republican Rep. Trey Hollingsworth.
Iowa: Sen. Chuck Grassley is hoping for re-election at the age of 88 and will battle Democratic candidate Michael Franken in November.
Kansas: Gov. Laura Kelly is projected to win the seat for governor as she faces her Republican challenger Derek Schmidt.
Kentucky: As Republican Sen. Rand Paul vies for re-election, he will face Democratic candidate Charles Booker in November. With Democratic Rep. John Yarmuth retiring, Rep. Morgan McGarvey hopes to replace the only Democratic representative in the state.
Louisiana: In the state’s open primary on Nov. 8, Republican incumbent John N. Kennedy leads his challengers, all of whom recently received endorsements from the Democratic party, including candidate Gary Chambers.
Maine: Incumbent Rep. Jared Golden will defend his seat against Republican challenger Bruce Poliquin.
Maryland: Democratic candidate Wes Moore will face-off against Republican candidate Dan Cox, as they replace term-limited incumbent Gov. Larry Hogan.
Massachusetts: On Sept. 6, Democrat Maura Healey, who is the state’s attorney general, will face Republican nominee Geoff Diehl for the seat of governor.
Michigan: Gov. Gretchen Whitmer ran unopposed in her primary and will face Republican candidate Tudor Dixon this fall.
Minnesota: In a special election to fill the seat of late Rep. Jim Hagedorn, Republican candidate Brad Finstad will face Democratic candidate Jeff Ettinger in November.
Mississippi: Incumbent Rep. Trent Kelly will go against Democrat Bennie Thompson.
Missouri: Republican candidate Eric Schmitt beat out 21 challengers in his primary and will likely face Democratic candidate Trudy Busch Valentine in November.
Montana: In the race for House of Representatives, Republican candidate Ryan Zinke will go against Democrat Monica Tranel.
Nebraska: Republican candidate Rep. Jim Pillen defeated Trump-endorsed candidate Charles Herbster to battle Democratic candidate Carol Blood. In the House of Representatives, Rep. Don Bacon will seek his fourth term as he is challenged by Democratic candidate Tony Vargas.
Nevada: Trump-endorsed candidate Adam Laxalt will likely face Democratic incumbent Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto in November.
New Hampshire: On Sept. 13, in a highly watched race for Senate, Democratic incumbent Maggie Hassan will face Republican challenger Chuck Morse.
New Jersey: In the race for U.S. Senate, Democrat Tim Alexander will go against Republican candidate Bob Healey.
New Mexico: Democratic Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham is challenged by Republican candidate Mark Ronchetti, who is a former television meteorologist. Two seats for the House of Representatives are up for re-election as well.
New York: Incumbent Gov. Kathy Hochul is the first woman to govern the state and will face Republican challenger Lee Zeldin for re-election.
North Carolina: Republican Sen. Richard Burr is retiring from a position that will help determine which party will win control of the Senate. Rep. Ted Budd, who is endorsed by Trump, will face Democratic candidate Cheri Beasley as she attempts to be the first Black woman to serve in the Senate for the state.
North Dakota: Republican Sen. John Hoeven is facing a challenge from Democratic candidate Katrina Christiansen.
Ohio: After a Trump endorsement, Republican J.D. Vance will face Democratic candidate Tim Ryan for a chance in the Senate. For the governor position, leading Republican candidate Mike DeWine will run against Democratic candidate Nancy Whaley as she attempts to become the first woman elected governor of the state.
Oklahoma: Retiring Sen. James Inhofe will be replaced by either Republican candidates Markwayne Mullin or T.W. Shannon who would hold the seat until January 2027.
Oregon: Democratic candidate Ron Wyden will face Republican candidate Jo Rae Perkins for a seat in the Senate. However, the GOP has plans to elect the state’s first Republican governor in decades as Democratic candidate Tina Kotek will face Republican candidate Christine Drazan.
Pennsylvania: Celebrity physician Mehmet Oz has won the GOP nomination in the battleground state and will face Democratic candidate, Lt. Gov. John Fetterman, who suffered a stroke days before his primary win. The race for the seat for governor will be between Attorney General Josh Shapiro and Democratic candidate Doug Mastriano.
Rhode Island: Democratic Gov. Dan McKee will defend his seat against Democratic candidate Nellie Gorbea, who is the current secretary of state, on Nov. 8.
South Carolina: Incumbent Gov. Henry McMaster has been endorsed by former President Donald Trump and is being challenged by Democratic candidate Joe Cunningham.
South Dakota: Gov. Kristi Noem is hoping for re-election as she faces uncontested Democratic candidate Jamie Smith.
Tennessee: Republican Gov. Bill Lee will defend his seat against Democratic challenger Jason Martin.
Texas: Gov. Greg Abbott secured the Republican nomination, while Democrats chose outspoken El Paso congressman Robert “Beto” O’Rourke as their candidate for governor. Attorney General Ken Paxton, who is currently under indictment on fraud charges will face Democratic challenger Rochelle Garza.
Utah: Incumbent Sen. Mike Lee is a favored candidate in the red state against his two challengers.
Vermont: Republican candidate Gerald Malloy will face-off against Democratic candidate Peter Welch for the seat in the U.S Senate.
Virginia: In the race for the House of Representatives, Republican candidate Jen Kiggans will face Democrat Elaine Luria.
Washington: Incumbent Patty Murray will likely face Republican challenger Tiffany Smiley in their open primary for the Senate seat.
West Virginia: All eyes are on the House of Representatives as Republican candidate, Rep. Alex Mooney, who is endorsed by former President Donald Trump, will face Rep. David B. McKinley in newly redrawn territories.
Wisconsin: A Trump-endorsed Tim Michels will battle incumbent Gov. Tony Evers for the governor’s seat in November.
Wyoming: Republican Rep. Liz Cheney lost her primary to Harriet Hageman, making her the fourth Republican Representative to lose their race after voting in favor of impeaching Donald Trump, who endorsed Cheney’s challenger.
Copy edited by Chanice McClover-Lee