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LATEST COVERAGE

LUTHER STRANGE APPOINTED TO VACANT ALABAMA U.S. SENATE SEAT

Luther Strange

Luther Strange

A day after Jeff Sessions was confirmed to be U.S. attorney general on a mostly party-line vote, Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange was picked to fill Sessions’s vacant Senate seat. However, Strange’s elevation by Governor Robert Bentley is already generating controversy because the governor will get to pick a new state attorney general to oversee an investigation into Bentley’s romantic relationship with a former staffer. Sessions was confirmed after a contentious debate in which Democrats questioned his commitment to upholding civil rights. Only one Democrat–Joe Manchin of West Virginia–voted for his confirmation. (Posted February 9)

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STATE TREASURER JOHN KENNEDY WINS LOUISIANA U.S. SENATE RACE

John Kennedy

John Kennedy

Kennedy, a Republican, defeated Democratic Public Service Commissioner Foster Campbell by a margin of 61 percent to 39 percent in the December 10 runoff. It was Kennedy’s third attempt to get to the Senate. The seat opened up after Republican U.S. Senator David Vitter decided not to seek re-election to make an unsuccessful bid for governor. With Kennedy’s win, the GOP’s majority in the Senate climbs to 52, and Republicans will hold 24 out of 28 Southern Senate seats. (Posted December 11)

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KAINE RULES OUT ANY RUN FOR 2020 DEMOCRATIC NOMINATION

Kaine

Kaine

U.S. Senator Tim Kaine of Virginia says he is through with presidential-level politics and will not run for the Democratic nomination in 2020. Kaine made those remarks in a November 17 interview with the Richmond Times-Dispatch, his first in-depth interview since he and Hillary Clinton went down to defeat on November 8. “I want to run and serve in the Senate for a long time,” Kaine said. “I think the Catholic in me likes to go to the place where there is the most work to be done.” Kaine is up for re-election in Virginia in 2018. (Posted November 18)

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REPUBLICANS KEEP ALL OF THEIR SOUTHERN U.S. SENATE SEATS

election-central-16Republicans held on to all eight of their Southern U.S. Senate seats in the November 8 election, with Marco Rubio in Florida and Richard Burr in North Carolina turning back strong Democratic challengers. In addition to Rubio and Burr, Republican incumbents also won re-election in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Oklahoma and South Carolina. With the wins on November 8, Republicans will hold 23 of the 28 Southern Senate seats, with an open seat in Louisiana still to be decided in a December 10 runoff. (Posted November 9)

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