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August 27, 2014 9:43 AM Long Night’s Journey Into a Yawn

By Ed Kilgore

I’m sure a lot of things happened in last night’s primaries in Florida, Oklahoma and Arizona that I either missed or don’t completely understand. But in general, it was probably a bad night to stay up late unless you live in one of the contested jurisdictions; even the one Arizona barnburner appears to have turned out conventionally.

If you wisely chose a non-political evening, you can quickly review how the results came in on the liveblogs at Daily Kos Elections. The expected candidates won two Florida House primaries (some paranoid Republicans may have sweated a possible comeback in FL-26 by Marco Rubio’s scandal-ridden buddy David Rivera, but he finished a poor fourth). In Oklahoma state senator Steve Russell, who will eternally be known as leader of the army unit that captured Saddam Hussein, won the GOP nomination in OK-05, a heavily Republican district being vacated by Senate nominee James Lankford.

Over in Arizona, the marquee statewide race ended quickly, as right-wing favorite Doug Doucey easily put away his two major rivals (GoDaddy exec Christine Jones and former Mesa mayor Steve Smith) for the Republican gubernatorial nomination. The one red-hot Democratic congressional primary there also ended quickly with a win for progressive favorite Ruben Gallego in AZ-07 (succeeding the retiring Ed Pastor). There was some light entertainment supplied by the surprisingly narrow defeat of Republican Attorney General Tom Horne, who managed to get himself arrested for a fender-bender witnessed by FBI agents investigating him for campaign finance fraud as he was leaving an adulterous tryst.

But the up-all-night contest was the GOP battle to choose an opponent for Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick in AZ-01, a close three-way race involving the nationally renowned figure of ridicule Rep. Adam Kwasman (he of YMCA camp bus fame), a self-funding Cowboy Politician and gaffe-machine named Gary Kiehne; and the state House Speaker, Andy Tobin. It says a lot that Tobin required massive out-of-state money transfusions to win 36% of the vote against these two incredible yahoos. There could be a recount, but it looks like Tobin beat Kiehne by about 300 votes. I’d say Kirkpatrick should be favored in November.

All in all, wish I’d just gone to bed early.

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.

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