"Democrats had an extraordinary amount of heartburn and anxiety over the possibility of getting locked out", said Dave Jacobson, a political consultant in the Golden State who worked on two races where Democrats feared a lockout. CNN projected Wednesday one of three Democrats will advance to face Republican Diane Harkey in November in the 49th District. It didn't happen in the governor's race, which will likely help turnout for the GOP in the fall.
Significant contests also played out elsewhere on Tuesday.
California Democrats can feel safe to exhale now. Abby Finkenauer won 77 percent of the vote in her primary to challenge Rod Blum in Iowa's First District, while four party-endorsed candidates triumphed in New Jersey: former prosecutor and naval aviator Mikie Sherrill, former Obama administration aide Andy Kim, state Sen. Keep in mind, for instance, that there is now a Democratic senator from Alabama because the state's Republican Party could not figure out how to prevent its voters from backing an accused child molester, Roy Moore. Initially, Ryan Zinke - a former congressman who is now Trump's interior secretary - was national GOP leaders' preference for the seat.
Mallory Hagan, who won Miss America in 2013. In three highly watched races, Democrats were able to get their desired candidate on the ballot. Hagan was crowned Miss America in 2013 and until recently worked as a news anchor in Georgia.
Primaries in eight states ended Tuesday night, further setting the stage for the midterms this November, but some of the races won't be decided for a while.
Her opponent will be Democrat Walt Maddox, the longtime mayor of Tuscaloosa, Ala., who won his party's primary with 55 percent of the vote.More news: Fears Are Rising That Drug Resistant Gonorrhoea Will Spread Across UK
"Democrats have done a good job of turning enthusiasm into a large number of candidates, of turning enthusiasm into fundraising", Mr Gonzalez said.
Democrats came away feeling optimistic, but cautiously so, for their chance for a blue wave to take back the House of Representatives.
He's also focused heavily on California's high taxes and cost of living.
Recognising the high stakes, Trump sought to energise his supporters in a series of tweets praising his preferred California Republican candidates. The fact that voters rebuked the Republican in this race could be a bad sign for Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley, who is seeking to oust vulnerable Democratic Sen.
"Cox had to run toward Donald Trump to get Republican voters to rally around him in the primary", said Thad Kousser, chair of the political science department at University of California, San Diego. "He will make a BIG difference!"
CORRECTION (June 6, 2018, 11:02 a.m.): An earlier version of this article incorrectly described a Republican candidate for the U.S. House seat in South Dakota as the chief of staff to the governor.
Some Democratic Party officials had expressed concern that the district was among those with too many Democrats filing to run, thus splitting the vote and potentially allowing Republicans to take the top two places and leave the Democrats without a candidate in the November general election.More news: Government publish customs "backstop" plan after last minute talks
Even though the primary didn't make history in the way many anticipated, it did in other ways, from record-setting turnouts to impressive showings by women candidates, younger candidates and minority candidates, including Deidre Dejears, who became the first person of color to be a major party nominee for statewide office in Iowa history.
Sixty-five percent (65%) of Democrats are more likely to vote in the next election for a member of the House or Senate who opposes the president's agenda. They backed Cox late in the game. Dianne Feinstein, fared well, fending off challenges from the left.
One measure of the shape of the Midterm election is that four states on opposite coasts - California, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and NY - have enough seats at play to get Democrats much of the way to a House majority. Ed Royce and Darrell Issa, which has opened the door to Democrat challengers.
Trump will not be on the ballot this year.
It's important to remember, however, that even if the parties' power over their voters has declined to some extent, they're still extremely powerful institutions that get their way most of the time. She said she wasn't a member of a political party, but she voted Democratic on Tuesday.
"I'm really, really anxious about our Constitution being ruined by this presidency", Karuntzos said after casting her ballot at a local community centre. She sits on several state boards and the State Lands Commission.More news: Latest class action lawsuit alleges all Apple Watches are defective
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