Definitive Senate Pairings

By Jim Ellis

March 12, 2020 — We have now seen US Senate primaries occur in five states with another six completing the filing process. In 15 instances, we already have either the general election pairings officially or unofficially set, though the Massachusetts Democratic primary on Sept. 1 is effectively the only determinative election.


Primary: held March 3
Runoff: March 31
Republican Runoff:
• Jeff Sessions (R) – Former US Attorney General; ex-US Senator
• Tommy Tuberville (R) – Retired Auburn Univ head football coach
General Election:
Runoff Winner vs. Sen. Doug Jones (D)


Primary: held March 3
• Sen. Tom Cotton (R)
Democrats did not file a candidate


Primary: August 4
Candidate Filing: May 27
• Sen. Martha McSally (R)
• Mark Kelly (D) – retired NASA astronaut


Primary: June 30
Candidate Filing: April 6
• Sen. Cory Gardner (R)
• Ex-Gov. John Hickenlooper (D)


Primary: June 2
Candidate Filing: March 13
• Sen. Jim Risch (R)
• Paulette Jordan (D) – 2018 Governor nominee; former state Rep


Primary: June 2
Candidate Filing: March 13
• Sen. Joni Ernst (R)
• Theresa Greenfield (D) – Real Estate Company Executive


Primary: May 19
Candidate Filing: Closed Jan. 28
• Sen. Mitch McConnell (R) – Senate Majority Leader
• Amy McGrath (D) – Retired Marine Corps officer and helicopter pilot; 2018 congressional nominee – CD 6


Primary: June 9
Candidate Filing: March 16
• Sen. Susan Collins (R)
• Sara Gideon (D) – Speaker, Maine House of Representatives


Primary: Sept. 1
Candidate Filing: May 5
Democratic Primary:
• Sen. Ed Markey (D)
• Rep. Joseph P. Kennedy III (D-Newton)


Primary: Aug. 4
Candidate Filing: April 21
• Sen. Gary Peters (D)
• John James (R) – Manufacturing company owner; Retired Army Ranger; 2018 US Senate nominee


Primary: Aug. 11
Candidate Filing: June 2
• Sen. Tina Smith (D)
• Jason Lewis (R) – Former US Congressman, District 2; Ex-radio talk show host


Primary: Held March 10
• Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith (R)
• Mike Espy (D): Former US Agriculture Secretary; ex-US congressman, 2018 Special Election US Senate nominee


Primary: June 2
• Sen. Steve Daines (R)
• Gov. Steve Bullock (D) – Former MT Attorney General; 2020 presidential candidate

North Carolina

Primary: Held March 3
• Sen. Thom Tillis (R)
• Cal Cunningham (D) – Former State Senator

South Carolina

Primary: June 9
Runoff: June 23
Candidate Filing: March 30
• Sen. Lindsey Graham (R)
• Jaime Harrison (D) – Attorney; Former South Carolina Democratic Party chairman

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