Special elections to the 110th United States Congress

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During the 110th United States Congress, there were two special elections for seats in the Senate, both in 2008, and 13 for seats in the House, five in 2007 and eight in 2008. Democrats gained three House seats at the expense of Republicans in 2008, but the incumbent party won all the other special elections.

Senate[edit]

State Election date
(links to special
election article)
Vacating
incumbent
Reason for vacancy Appointee Winner Term ends
Wyoming November 4, 2008 Craig Thomas (R) Died June 4, 2007 John Barrasso (R) John Barrasso (R) January 3, 2013
Mississippi November 4, 2008 Trent Lott (R) Resigned December 18, 2007 Roger Wicker (R) Roger Wicker (R) January 3, 2013

Mississippi[edit]

Roger Wicker, formerly the representative of Mississippi's 1st congressional district, was appointed by Governor Haley Barbour on December 31, 2007, to fill the vacancy caused by the December 18 resignation of Trent Lott.[1][2] It had been speculated that Lott wished to resign before a new lobbying reform law, effective the first day of 2008, took effect; having resigned before the end of 2007, Lott may become a lobbyist in 2009 instead of 2010.[2] Controversy arose when Barbour called for the special election to be held on the same day as the general election. As a result, Mississippi's Attorney General Jim Hood challenged Barbour in court, claiming that the special election needed to be held within 100 days of Lott's resignation, as per state law.[3] Initially, a Mississippi Circuit Court judge sided with Hood, ruling that the election take place on or before March 19, 2008.[4] However, Barbour filed an appeal to the Mississippi Supreme Court, which overturned the earlier ruling and set the special election for November 4, 2008.[5][6]

Democratic former Governor Ronnie Musgrove challenged Wicker. Another Democrat, former Congressman Ronnie Shows, also filed to run, but he withdrew in February 2008 and endorsed Musgrove.[7][8] Wicker beat Musgrove 55% to 45%.

Wyoming[edit]

John Barrasso was appointed by Governor Dave Freudenthal (D) on June 22, 2007 to fill the senate seat of Republican Craig L. Thomas, who died on June 4.[9] Wyoming law requires that the interim senator be affiliated with the same political party as the departed senator. Barrasso ran in the November 4, 2008 special election, held on the day of the 2008 presidential election, to serve out the remainder of Thomas' term, which expires in January 2013.[10]

On the Democratic side, Casper City Councilman Keith Goodenough announced his candidacy.[11] In the primary on August 19, Goodenough was defeated by a political newcomer, Gillette defense attorney Nick Carter, who became Barrasso's opponent in the general election.[12]

Barrasso won on election day, taking 73% of the vote and winning every county in the state.

House of Representatives[edit]

The thirteen special elections to the 110th United States Congress are listed below by election date.

District Election date
(links to special
election article)
Prior incumbent Reason for vacancy Winner
Georgia 10th July 17, 2007 Charlie Norwood (R) Died February 13, 2007 Paul Broun (R)
California 37th August 21, 2007 Juanita Millender-McDonald (D) Died April 22, 2007 Laura Richardson (D)
Massachusetts 5th October 16, 2007 Marty Meehan (D) Resigned July 1, 2007, to become Chancellor of the University of Massachusetts Lowell Niki Tsongas (D)
Ohio 5th December 11, 2007 Paul Gillmor (R) Died September 5, 2007 Bob Latta (R)
Virginia 1st December 11, 2007 Jo Ann Davis (R) Died October 6, 2007 Rob Wittman (R)
Illinois's 14th March 8, 2008 Dennis Hastert (R) Resigned November 26, 2007 Bill Foster (D)
Indiana 7th March 11, 2008 Julia Carson (D) Died December 17, 2007 André Carson (D)
California 12th April 8, 2008 Tom Lantos (D) Died February 11, 2008 Jackie Speier (D)
Louisiana 1st May 3, 2008 Bobby Jindal (R) Resigned January 14, 2008 to become Governor of Louisiana Steve Scalise (R)
Louisiana 6th May 3, 2008 Richard Baker (R) Resigned February 2, 2008, to become Director of the Managed Funds Association.[13] Don Cazayoux (D)
Mississippi 1st May 13, 2008 Roger Wicker (R) Resigned December 31, 2007, upon his appointment to the United States Senate Travis Childers (D)
Maryland 4th June 17, 2008 Albert Wynn (D) Resigned May 31, 2008, after losing the Democratic primary for the following term to Donna Edwards Donna Edwards (D)
Ohio 11th November 18, 2008 Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D) Died August 20, 2008 Marcia Fudge (D)

Total Results[edit]

e • d  Summary of the 2007-2008 United States House of Representatives special election results
Party Popular Vote Seats Up/Seats After Change
Vote  %
  Republican Party 466,929  49.17% 7 4 -3
  Democratic Party 464,649  48.92% 6 9 +3
Others 9,542  1.00% 0 0 --
  Independents 8,562  0.90% 0 0 --
Total 949,862  100% 13 13

See also[edit]

References[edit]