The year’s first downballot primaries start Tuesday. Here’s our guide to all the key races

With both parties' presidential nomination contests all but decided, the nation's downballot primary season starts with a bang Tuesday. Five states—including the two largest—pick their candidates for state and federal offices in elections that will help shape the state of play in key races at all levels.

Below, you'll find our guide to all of the top races to watch on Super Tuesday, arranged chronologically by each state’s poll closing times. When it’s available, we'll tell you about any reliable polling that exists for each race, but if we don't mention any numbers, it means no recent surveys have been made public. You can also check out our most recent episode of "The Downballot" podcast for an even deeper dive on many of these primaries.

Two states on the docket will also be using brand-new congressional maps, though for very different reasons. In Alabama, a federal court drew up new boundaries after ruling that the Voting Rights Act required the creation of a second seat where Black voters could elect their preferred candidate. In North Carolina, though, the Republican-controlled state Supreme Court gave GOP legislators the green light to draw up an aggressive new gerrymander, a task they eagerly took on.

You can find interactive maps from Dave's Redistricting App for Alabama and North Carolina's new boundaries, as well as the maps that first came into use in 2022 for Arkansas, California, and Texas.

You can find Daily Kos Elections' 2020 presidential results for each congressional district here, as well as our geographic descriptions for each seat. You’ll also want to bookmark our primary calendar, which includes the dates for primaries in all 50 states.

We'll be liveblogging all of these races at Daily Kos Elections on Tuesday night, starting when the first polls close at 7:30 PM ET. Join us for our complete coverage!

North Carolina

Polls close at 7:30 PM ET. Candidates must take at least 30% of the vote to avert a May 14 runoff, though the second-place finisher must officially request a runoff for one to occur.

• NC-Gov (R & D) (50-49 Trump): Tar Heel State politicos have long anticipated that the race to succeed termed-out Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper will pit Republican Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson against Democratic Attorney General Josh Stein, and every primary poll shows just such a matchup coming to pass.

While Robinson's intraparty critics have warned that his past screeds—which run the gamut from antisemitic and Islamophobic to misogynistic, homophobic, and transphobic—as well as his ardent opposition to reproductive rights could cost them the general election, primary voters appear unconvinced. The Donald Trump-endorsed lieutenant governor holds a wide lead against both wealthy businessman Bill Graham, who has spent millions on ads attacking Robinson's past statements, and state Treasurer Dale Folwell.

Stein, who has Cooper's support, also enjoys a big advantage over former state Supreme Court Justice Mike Morgan and three other Democrats.

• NC-01 (R) (50-49 Biden): Republican legislators targeted freshman Democratic Rep. Don Davis by transforming his seat in the inland, northeastern corner of the state from a constituency Biden carried 53-46 into one he barely won. Now Army veteran Laurie Buckhout and two-time nominee Sandy Smith are competing for the Republican nomination and take on Davis. Both Smith and especially Buckhout have self-funded a significant portion of their campaigns, and both are campaigning as ardent Trump allies.

The Congressional Leadership Fund, a well-funded super PAC that's close to House GOP leadership, has spent about $200,000 to stop Smith from advancing for the second cycle in a row. Two years ago, CLF failed to stop Smith, who was accused of physical abuse by her daughter and two ex-husbands, from winning the nomination, but it's hoping its latest intervention will be more successful. 

Smith, who has run ads declaring that Trump won the 2020 election and denied her own 52-48 loss to Davis, has also sought to portray Buckhout as an interloper from Virginia and attacked her for getting a 2017 DUI conviction removed from the record. Buckhout, for her part, has largely avoided going after Smith.

• NC-06 (R) (58-41 Trump): Six Republicans are competing to replace Rep. Kathy Manning, who is one of three Democratic House members who is not seeking reelection in a seat that Republicans made all but unwinnable for her party.

Lobbyist Addison McDowell arguably became the front-runner hours before he even announced his candidacy, after Trump endorsed his bid for this district in the central Piedmont region. But the first-time candidate faces several opponents who have been on the ballot in North Carolina before, though they and their allies largely focused on attacking one another rather than McDowell.

One familiar name to national observers is Bo Hines, a former college football player who narrowly lost the 2022 general election to Democrat Wiley Nickel 52-48 in the old 13th. Another is former Rep. Mark Walker, who represented previous versions of the 6th from 2015 to 2021. Also in the running are Christian Castelli, a self-funder who badly lost to Manning last cycle under the previous map; former High Point Mayor Jay Wagner; and Mary Ann Contogiannis, who took third against Castelli in the last primary. 

The Club for Growth, a well-funded anti-tax group that's had an on-again, off-again feud with Trump, is supporting Hines and has spent about $1 million attacking Walker. A super PAC backed by hedge fund billionaire Ken Griffin called Conservatives for American Excellence, though, has spent a comparable amount to leverage the Club's anti-Trump apostasies against Hines.

• NC-08 (R) (58-41 Trump): Far-right Rep. Dan Bishop is leaving Congress to run for attorney general, and six fellow Republicans are on the ballot to replace him in a seat based in the eastern Charlotte suburbs and rural areas further east. The two contenders who have the most money by far are a pair of self-funders, state Rep. John Bradford and former Union County Commissioner Allan Baucom, but it's a third hopeful who has attracted the most outside attention.

That candidate is pastor Mark Harris, whose 2018 House campaign for the old 9th District was responsible for one the most ignominious election-fraud scandals in recent memory. Election authorities threw out the result and ordered a do-over election, which Bishop ultimately won, but Harris still insists he was the rightful winner. Despite his baggage, Harris enjoys the backing of the party's front-runner for governor, Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson.

However, a super PAC called America Leads Action, which is funded by a pair of prominent conservative donors, is working to end Harris' political career once and for all, spending more than $1.8 million on negative ads. There's been no accompanying pro-Harris spending.

• NC-10 (R) (57-41 Trump): Five Republicans are facing off to succeed GOP Rep. Patrick McHenry, who startled the political world when he announced his retirement in December, in a seat that includes Winston-Salem and the western Piedmont region. Only two contenders, though, have brought in a serious amount of money, and they're both self-funders: state Rep. Grey Mills and firearms manufacturer Pat Harrigan, who was the 2022 GOP nominee against Democrat Jeff Jackson in the old 14th District.

Harrigan has Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson's backing, and he's benefited from close to $600,000 in support from two groups, the Koch network's Americans for Prosperity and the Elect Principled Veterans Fund. But another conservative group, GOPAC, has spent over $1.5 million attacking Harrigan on immigration and praising Mills.

• NC-13 (R) (58-41 Trump): Republicans have a 14-way primary to replace another Democrat who is leaving Congress because of GOP gerrymandering, Rep. Wiley Nickel, in a seat based in the Raleigh exurbs and nearby rural areas. There's a good chance this packed contest will go to a runoff, and four contenders appear to have a shot to advance

Three of those candidates have unsuccessfully run for office in recent years. Both businessman DeVan Barbour and attorney Kelly Daughtry competed in the 2022 primary for the previous version of the 13th District (the eventual nominee, Bo Hines, is now seeking the 6th District), while businessman Fred Von Canon was the party's nominee for the state House in 2020 and 2022. The final big name is a first-time candidate, former federal prosecutor Brad Knott. A fifth candidate worth watching though, is Josh McConkey, who won more than $750,000 from the state lottery during the campaign.

Daughtry and Von Canon have each self-funded much of their campaigns, while Knott's family has financed a super PAC called American Foundations Committee to aid him and attack those two rivals. Daughtry's backers at Conservative Voters Alliance have also aired ads to boost her and undermine Knott and Von Canon, while no major independent expenditures have been made either for or against Barbour or McConkey.

Barbour attracted unwanted attention a few weeks before Election Day when a woman accused the married candidate of repeatedly propositioning her for sex in 2021, an allegation he denied. Knott also drew unfavorable headlines during the final week of the race after acknowledging he spent close to a decade voting from his parents' address despite owning a home three miles away.

• NC-AG (D) (50-49 Trump): Democratic Rep. Jeff Jackson launched his bid to replace Attorney General Josh Stein right after Republicans gerrymandered his seat in the House, and he goes into Tuesday with a huge fundraising advantage over his two main foes, Durham County District Attorney Satana Deberry and attorney Tim Dunn. A mid-February Change Research poll for the progressive site Carolina Forward shows Jackson outpacing Deberry 38-14.

However, Republicans appeared to make a late push to boost Deberry, whom they likely believe would be an easier candidate to beat. A new group with GOP ties called And Justice For All PAC has been running ads to promote Deberry, an effort Jackson claimed was "on track" to spend $1 million. The winner will face far-right Rep. Dan Bishop, an election denier who has no opposition in the GOP primary. 

Other North Carolina races to watch:


Polls close at 8 PM ET / 7 PM local time. A runoff will take place on April 16 in contests where no one earns a majority of the vote.

• AL-01 (R) (75-24 Trump): Republican Rep. Barry Moore decided to run for this southern Alabama seat after the state's new court-drawn map turned his 2nd District into a Democratic-leaning constituency. Moore, however, faces a difficult primary battle against fellow Rep. Jerry Carl. No other candidates are on the ballot, so this contest should be settled without a runoff.

Carl, who serves the existing 1st District, began the race as the front-runner, in part because he currently represents 59% of the new 1st, while Moore's seat forms the balance. Carl also started off with more money than his colleague and has maintained that advantage, though outside groups have spent comparable amounts for both congressmen.

Both incumbents are ardent conservatives who voted against recognizing Joe Biden's 2020 win, and they're each trying to argue that the other has strayed from MAGA orthodoxy. However, there's a key difference between them: Moore is a member of the nihilistic House Freedom Caucus, while Carl is closer to the party leadership. A poll conducted in the final week of the race by Auburn University at Montgomery found Carl ahead 43-35.

• AL-02 (D) (56-43 Biden): Eleven Democrats are running to replace Republican Rep. Barry Moore in a revamped seat that now takes in Mobile, Montgomery, and the eastern Black Belt, so it's very likely this primary will go to a runoff.

The only candidate who has benefited from significant outside spending is former Justice Department official Shomari Figures, who is the son of a longtime Mobile elected official, state Sen. Vivian Figures. The younger Figures has received more than $1.3 million in support from a super PAC with ties to the cryptocurrency industry, while no major groups have spent anything to attack him.

The field also includes five state legislators, though only two of them―state Reps. Napoleon Bracy and Jeremy Gray―actually represent any part of the new 2nd District. But a third lawmaker, state House Minority Leader Anthony Daniels, has emphasized that he grew up in the Black Belt (even though he now represents Huntsville, at the far end of the state), and he's brought in more money than anyone else in the race.

Also in the running are two legislators from the Birmingham area, state Sen. Merika Coleman and state Rep. Juandalynn Givan.


The first polls close at 8 PM ET / 7 PM local time in the portion of Texas located in the Central time zone, which includes about 97% of the state's population. Polls close in the rest of the state (a much smaller region in the El Paso area that's in the Mountain time zone) one hour later. A runoff will take place on May 28 in contests in which no one takes a majority of the vote.

• TX-Sen (D) (52-46 Trump): Republican Sen. Ted Cruz holds one of just two Senate seats that Democrats have a realistic shot at flipping this cycle, and nine candidates are hoping to take him on. Rep. Colin Allred, who won his own competitive 2018 race for a seat in the Dallas area, has been the party's front-runner from the start, and he's enjoyed a huge fundraising lead over the rest of the field.

Allred's main opponent is state Sen. Roland Gutierrez, who became a prominent gun-safety activist after the 2022 Uvalde school shooting, which took place in his district. Every poll has shown Allred well ahead, but a pair of February polls disagree on whether the congressman is primed to avoid a runoff. The contest also includes state Rep. Carl Sherman and former Nueces County District Attorney Mark Gonzalez.

• TX-12 (R) (58-40 Trump): Longtime Rep. Kay Granger is retiring from her seat in western Fort Worth and its adjacent suburbs, and five fellow Republicans are campaigning to take her place. The front-runner appears to be state Rep. Craig Goldman, who has the support of Gov. Greg Abbott and has decisively outspent the rest of the field. 

Goldman's main rival is businessman John O'Shea, who began running well before Granger announced her departure in November. O'Shea has the backing of Attorney General Ken Paxton, whom Goldman voted to impeach last year, but he's not getting any major super PAC support.

Conservatives for American Excellence, though, has spent around $600,000 on ads boosting Goldman and attacking O'Shea. Also worth watching is businesswoman Shellie Gardner, a self-funder who is also the self-proclaimed "Queen of Christmas Lights."

• TX-18 (D) (74-25 Biden): Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee announced she would seek a 16th term just two days after she was blown out by state Sen. John Whitmire, a fellow Democrat, in December's runoff to serve as mayor of Houston. Now, however, she faces a tough battle to keep her job. Former Houston City Councilwoman Amanda Edwards, who once was a Jackson Lee intern, spent months campaigning for this seat while the incumbent was running for mayor, and she decided to remain in the race even after the congressman sought to run again.

Edwards, who, at 42, is over three decades younger than her opponent, has pitched herself as an agent of change and largely avoided attacking Jackson Lee. The incumbent's critics, though, are hoping that Jackson Lee was weakened by last year's bruising campaign against Whitmire, which included the release of audio where a person who sounded like Jackson Lee berated her employees. (Jackson Lee neither confirmed nor denied the voice was hers but issued a statement saying she had "fallen short of my own standards.")

The only poll we've seen was a University of Houston survey from mid-February that showed Jackson Lee edging out her better-funded rival by a narrow 43-39 margin. Another 3% went to restauranter Rob Slater, who has raised little money but could keep either Jackson Lee or Edwards from taking the majority they'd need to avert a runoff. 

• TX-23 (R) (53-46 Trump): Four hard-liners are trying to deny renomination to GOP Rep. Tony Gonzales, who was censured by the state party last year, in a sprawling West Texas seat. The incumbent infuriated the far right by, among other things, voting to confirm Joe Biden's victory in the hours after the Jan. 6 attacks and later supporting gun-safety legislation after the Uvalde school shooting, which happened in his district. None of these apostasies, though, have prevented Gonzales from far outraising all of his rivals.

The challenger who has attracted the most attention (and money) is gunmaker Brandon Herrera, who has over 3 million subscribers on his YouTube channel, where he's known as "The AK Guy." Another name to watch is former Medina County GOP Chair Julie Clark, who has self-funded around $900,000 but raised little from donors.

• TX-26 (R) (59-40 Trump): Republicans have an 11-way primary underway to succeed retiring GOP Rep. Michael Burgess in the northern Fort Worth suburbs and exurbs, but Donald Trump and his allies know exactly who they want to win.

Far-right media figure Brandon Gill, who is the son-in-law of MAGA toady Dinesh D'Souza, sports endorsements from Trump, Sen. Ted Cruz, and the Club for Growth. Gill, who has self-funded much of his campaign, has outspent his rivals and has benefited from more than $750,000 in outside support from the Club and an outfit funded by D'Souza called Right Texas.

Several major GOP donors, though, are taking action to stop Gill. America Leads Action and Conservatives for American Excellence have spent a combined $2 million to sink him, an effort that includes ads blasting Gill as a "Wall Street banker" whose "bank did business with communist China."

But it's hard to say who might stop Gill because none of the other 10 candidates have attracted anything like this attention. Gill's main rival is arguably Southlake Mayor John Huffman, the sole sitting elected official in the race. But other notables include former Denton County Judge Scott Armey, who lost a previous version of this seat to Burgess in a nasty 2002 runoff; Luisa Del Rosal, who previously served as chief of staff to 23rd District Rep. Tony Gonzales; and former State District Judge Doug Robison.

• TX-32 (D) (66-33 Biden): Rep. Colin Allred's decision to run for the Senate has opened up his diverse constituency in northern Dallas, prompting 10 fellow Democrats to campaign to succeed him. A pair of contenders, though, have stood out as the front-runners since the early days of the race and appear poised to advance to a likely runoff.

Those two candidates are state Rep. Julie Johnson, who was the first Texas legislator with a same-sex spouse, and Brian Williams, a trauma surgeon who attracted national attention in 2016 after he treated Dallas police officers wounded by a sniper. Both have far outraised their eight rivals, while Johnson has further benefited from around $1 million in support from a crypto-aligned super PAC called Protect Progress.

Also in the running are businessman Raja Chaudhry; Alex Cornwallis, who was the party's 2022 nominee for a seat on the state Board of Education; former Dallas City Council member Kevin Felder; and civil rights attorney Justin Moore.

Other Texas races to watch:


Polls close at 8:30 PM ET / 7:30 local time. A runoff will take place on April 2 in contests where no one earns a majority of the vote.

• AR-03 (R) (60-37 Trump): Republican Rep. Steve Womack, a self-described "institution guy" who voted to recognize Joe Biden's 2020 win, faces a far-right primary challenge from state Sen. Clint Penzo. But while Penzo has pledged to join the Freedom Caucus if elected to this northwest Arkansas seat, like-minded donors and super PACs have done little to help the underfunded legislator get his message out. No other candidates are on the GOP primary ballot.


Polls close at 11 PM ET / 8 PM local time. All candidates running for Congress and for state office compete on one ballot rather than in separate party primaries; the two contenders with the most votes, regardless of party, will then advance to the Nov. 5 general election. Candidates cannot win outright in March by taking a majority of the vote, except in some officially nonpartisan elections.

• CA-Sen (63-34 Biden): Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff has massively outspent his 26 rivals in the race for the Senate seat that Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein held for 31 years until her death last fall (appointed Sen. Laphonza Butler is not running), and he appears to be on track to continue to the second round. Schiff and his super-PAC allies, though, are also working to make sure he gets to face a Republican in this dark blue state rather than contend with an unpredictable general election against fellow Democratic Rep. Katie Porter.

Schiff's side has aired ads designed to help the leading Republican, former Major League Baseball player Steve Garvey, consolidate right-leaning votes by ostensibly attacking him as a Trump supporter who is "too conservative." A few recent polls show Schiff getting the matchup he wants, though the available data is limited.

While Porter, who has her own national fundraising base, has deployed more money than most of the field, Schiff's side has still vastly outspent her on TV. Porter is trying to avoid defeat by running digital ads designed to help another Republican, Eric Early, peel off conservative votes from Garvey, though her efforts have been on a much smaller scale than Schiff’s. A third House Democrat, Barbara Lee, is also running, but she's struggled to raise money and has not performed well in polls.

All of these candidates are also competing in a simultaneous special election for the remainder of Feinstein's term. Only seven contenders are on Tuesday's primary ballot, though, so it's possible we'll see a different winner in this contest than in the election for a full six-year term.

• CA-12 (89-9 Biden): BART board member Lateefah Simon has the support of the departing incumbent, Senate candidate Barbara Lee, and other prominent Democrats, and there's little question she'll advance to the general election to represent Oakland and Berkley. There's less clarity as to whom Simon's opponent might be, though the only other Democrat who has raised a notable amount of money is Cal State professor Jennifer Tran. The field also includes five other Democrats and two Republicans.

• CA-16 (75-22 Biden): Democratic Rep. Anna Eshoo is retiring from a seat based in Silicon Valley, and the race to replace her has become the most expensive House contest in the state.

Eshoo is supporting Santa Clara County Supervisor Joe Simitian, who is one of several current or former Democratic elected officials in the running. But two others, former San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo and Assemblyman Evan Low, are also waging well-funded campaigns. And while Palo Alto City Councilmember Julie Lythcott-Haims has considerably fewer resources, she may stand out as the only woman waging a serious campaign.

But the best-financed Democrat is Marine veteran Peter Dixon, a businessman who co-founded the bipartisan super PAC With Honor. Dixon has taken advantage of his huge donor base and ability to self-fund, and he's received over $1.3 million in outside support from a group connected to With Honor. The field also includes former Saratoga City Councilmember Rishi Kumar, who lost the all-Democratic 2022 general election to Eshoo 58-42, as well as three other Democrats and two Republicans.

• CA-20 (61-36 Trump): Former Rep. Kevin McCarthy resigned from this Central Valley seat in December after losing his speakership, and 11 candidates are on the ballot to replace him for a full two-year term. There's also a special election for the remaining months of McCarthy's term, but the first round of voting for that race won't take place until two weeks later on March 19.

McCarthy and Donald Trump are backing Assemblyman Vince Fong, a former McCarthy district director. Fong, however, decided to run for Congress only after filing for reelection to the legislature, and California Secretary of State Shirley Weber is arguing that he's violating state law by seeking both posts at once. A state judge allowed Fong to proceed in December, but Weber has appealed that decision.

The other two major Republicans are Tulare County Sheriff Mike Boudreaux and casino owner Kyle Kirkland, though they each have considerably less money or institutional support than Fong.

Two Democrats, security guard Andy Morales and teacher Marisa Wood, are also running, and at least McCarthy's network seems to believe the latter's presence could be beneficial to Fong. A group called Central Valley Values, which is partially funded by the former speaker's leadership PAC, has spent over $640,000 on messaging to help Fong. That messaging has also included anti-Boudreaux ads and what appears to be an attempt to make sure Wood is Fong's general election foe.

• CA-22 (55-42 Biden): Republican Rep. David Valadao faces a rematch against the Democrat he beat in a tight 2022 battle, former Democratic Assemblyman Rudy Salas, but the presence of two more candidates is causing problems for both candidates and their national party allies.

Salas' backers fear that state Sen. Melissa Hurtado, a Democrat who represents most of this Central Valley seat but has raised little money, will split the Democratic vote and allow two Republicans to advance to the general election. Republicans, though, are likewise wary of far-right contender Chris Mathys, a wealthy perennial candidate who almost beat Valadao in the 2022 primary. As a result, national Democrats are waging an expensive campaign to boost Salas even as their GOP counterparts have deployed their own seven-figure effort to derail Mathys.

• CA-30 (72-26 Biden): Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff's decision to run for the Senate has set off a packed and unpredictable 15-way race to succeed him in a seat that includes part of Los Angeles as well as the cities of Burbank and Glendale.

The Democratic field features two state lawmakers, state Sen. Anthony Portantino and Assemblywoman Laura Friedman, while Los Angeles Unified School District Board of Education member Nick Melvoin is also waging a well-funded effort. Another notable name belongs to former Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer, who ran an abortive campaign for Los Angeles mayor in 2022 but has the support of that race’s eventual winner, Mayor Karen Bass.

The field also includes Ben Savage, the "Boy Meets World" actor who has been self-financing most of his campaign. West Hollywood Mayor Sepi Shyne and former State Department official Jirair Ratevosian are also campaigning as Democrats, though they haven't brought in anywhere near as much money as their rivals. Ratevosian may also benefit from being a member of the area's large Armenian American community, though local leaders tell Politico they don't have a deep relationship with him. Another five Democrats, as well as two Republicans and an unaffiliated candidate, round out the field.

• CA-31 (64-33 Biden): Rep. Grace Napolitano is retiring from this seat in the eastern San Gabriel Valley, and five fellow Democrats appear to be waging serious bids to replace her.

The most familiar name is former Rep. Gil Cisneros, who was elected to his only term in office in the 2018 blue wave in a competitive district that includes almost none of the voters he now wants to represent. But while Cisneros, who lost reelection in 2020 to Republican Young Kim, may have begun with little name recognition, the onetime $266 million lottery winner's wealth has allowed him to far outspend his rivals. 

Napolitano herself is supporting state Sen. Bob Archuleta, who would be 79 on taking office and would set the record for the oldest freshman representative in American history. That's not the only concern his critics have leveled at him, though: Archuleta, who has long characterized himself as a moderate, is currently being sued by a former staffer for alleged sexual harassment and retaliation, allegations he's denied.

The field also includes two other candidates who are often identified as centrists: state Rep. Susan Rubio, who represents over 70% of this district, and self-funding attorney Greg Hafif, who touts himself as a "moderate Democrat." Rounding out the big names is Mary Ann Lutz, a local community college trustee and former Napolitano staffer. 

Two Republicans, attorney Daniel Martinez and perennial candidate Benito Bernal, are also on the ballot, and their presence could play a role in what happens next. Cisneros has been sending out mailers ostensibly attacking Martinez as "too close to Trump," a tactic Politico says is aimed at making sure Rubio can't advance. Rubio is trying to counter with text messages to elevate Bernal. The rest of the roster consists of one Democrat and a pair of unaffiliated candidates.

• CA-40 (50-48 Biden): Democrats are hoping that they can put up a strong fight against Republican Rep. Young Kim in this eastern Orange County seat, and two hopefuls are vying to take her on.

Retired Orange County Fire Capt. Joe Kerr, a self-described "centrist" who twice unsuccessfully ran for local office, has brought in considerably more money than Allyson Muñiz Damikolas, the president of the Tustin Unified School District Board of Education. Kerr also enjoys the backing of several California House members, including Senate rivals Adam Schiff and Katie Porter. Damikolas, for her part, was in the news in 2022 when conservatives unsuccessfully tried to recall her for allegedly promoting what they called "critical race theory."

• CA-45 (52-46 Biden): Republican Rep. Michelle Steel will likely be a top Democratic target this fall, and four Democrats are campaigning to face her in western Orange County. 

The two contenders who have generated the most attention are attorney Derek Tran and Garden Grove City Councilwoman Kim Nguyen-Penaloza. Tran has raised significantly more money, but Nguyen-Penaloza, who lost a tight 2022 race for the county Board of Supervisors, has the state Democratic Party in her corner. Attorney Cheyenne Hunt, who has a large social media presence, may also have the resources to advance.

• CA-47 (54-43 Biden): Democratic Rep. Katie Porter's Senate bid has opened up a competitive seat based in coastal Orange County and Irvine. Former Orange County GOP Chair Scott Baugh, who lost to Porter 52-48 in 2022, is running again, and he appears on track to easily move forward to the general election. But the battle between the two leading Democrats, state Sen. Dave Min and attorney Joanna Weiss, is more uncertain.

Min, who has the backing of Porter and the state party, remained the front-runner for most of the race even after he was arrested for drunk driving in May. However, the hawkish pro-Israel group AIPAC has deployed a huge $4.5 million to stop Min, with many of its ads focused on his DUI. EMILY's List, likewise, has dropped over $800,000 to help Weiss, which alone is more than twice as much as all the pro-Min spending combined.

The only recent poll we've seen was a mid-February internal for Baugh that showed him leading with 22%, while Min outpaced Weiss 22-16. The survey also found a second Republican, businessman Max Ukropina, at 9%, while none of the other six candidates on the ballot attracted much support.

• CA-49 (55-43 Biden): Democratic Rep. Mike Levin will be hard for Republicans to beat, but two self-funding Republicans are betting he's not invincible. Those contenders are businessman Matt Gunderson, who came close to winning a Democratic-leaning seat in the state Senate in 2022, and media executive Margarita Wilkinson.

Two more Republicans, businesswoman Sheryl Adams and Marine veteran Kate Monroe, are also campaigning for a constituency located in coastal southern Orange and northern San Diego counties.

Other California races to watch:

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