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Politics: Ohio, Florida voters cast ballots in 3 congressional races

Judge dismisses Fulton County ballot review case in Georgia

  Judge dismisses Fulton County ballot review case in Georgia ATLANTA (AP) — A judge on Wednesday dismissed a lawsuit alleging fraud in Georgia's most populous county during the 2020 election. The suit sought a review of some 147,000 absentee ballots to see if any were illegitimate. The lawsuit was originally filed in December and alleged evidence of fraudulent ballots and improper ballot counting in Fulton County. It was filed by nine Georgia voters and spearheaded by Garland Favorito, a longtime critic of Georgia’s election systems.

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Both Democrats and Republicans brought out their heavy hitters in the runup to the special congressional election in central Ohio, as the parties sought to boost turnout in one of three off-year contests on the ballot Tuesday.

FILE—In this file photo from Aug. 9, 2021, Mike Carey, Republican candidate for the 15th Congressional District of Ohio, talks to supporters before a Republican club meeting in Powell, Ohio. Carey is facing Democrat Allison Russo in the election on Tuesday, Nov. 2, 2021. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete, File): Election 2021 Congress Ohio © Provided by Associated Press Election 2021 Congress Ohio FILE—In this file photo from Oct. 23, 2021, Allison Russo, left, Democratic candidate for 15th Congressional District of Ohio, speaks to supporters during a campaign event in Upper Arlington, Ohio. Russo is facing Republican Mike Carey in the election on Tuesday, Nov. 2, 2021. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete, File) © Provided by Associated Press FILE—In this file photo from Oct. 23, 2021, Allison Russo, left, Democratic candidate for 15th Congressional District of Ohio, speaks to supporters during a campaign event in Upper Arlington, Ohio. Russo is facing Republican Mike Carey in the election on Tuesday, Nov. 2, 2021. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete, File)

President Joe Biden and former Vice President Mike Pence swung into action to help their parties' candidates in the race for Ohio's 15th Congressional District, a seat vacated by Republican Steve Stivers in May, when he left to lead the state Chamber of Commerce.

A QAnon conspiracy theory about election fraud is becoming a pro-Trump push for traceable ballots

  A QAnon conspiracy theory about election fraud is becoming a pro-Trump push for traceable ballots Instead of giving up false claims about 2020 election fraud some GOP 'America First' candidates are pitching reforms steeped in conspiracy theories.One of the right's emerging favorites is traceable ballots,  a combination of printed security paper and digital tracking that would allow a person to look up their ballots after being cast.

Pence stumped Saturday for Republican coal lobbyist Mike Carey, endorsed by former President Donald Trump and favored in the GOP-learning district. Biden endorsed two-term Democratic state Rep. Allison Russo on Monday. Her bid for the open seat is considered the party's most competitive in years, though she remains a long shot.

A second special congressional election is taking place in the Cleveland-area 11th Congressional District. That contest pits Democratic Cuyahoga County Councilmember Shontel Brown against Republican Laverne Gore, a business owner, consultant and trainer, for Democrat Marcia Fudge's old seat. Fudge stepped down in March to become Biden's housing secretary after nearly 13 years in Congress.

What Virginia's early vote tells us about a tight-as-a-tick governor's race

  What Virginia's early vote tells us about a tight-as-a-tick governor's race Nearly three-quarters of a million Virginians have voted ahead of the closely-watched race between former Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) and former Carlyle Group chief executive Glenn Youngkin (R), a contest that will provide a critical read on the political mood ahead of next year's midterm elections. Polling in the race is unanimous: Almost no matter the model a pollster uses to divine which voters will show up, McAuliffe and Youngkin are tied. It has been more than a month since any survey showed one candidate with an advantage outside the margin of error; the last six public surveys give McAuliffe an average advantage of 0.8 percentage points - effectively nothing.

Democratic candidate Shontel Brown is shown, Monday, Oct. 25, 2021, in Cleveland. Brown is running for Ohio's 11th Congressional District. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak) © Provided by Associated Press Democratic candidate Shontel Brown is shown, Monday, Oct. 25, 2021, in Cleveland. Brown is running for Ohio's 11th Congressional District. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)

Brown, who bested firebrand progressive Nina Turner in the August primary, is considered a shoo-in to win in the heavily Democratic district.

In Florida, 11 Democrats are on the ballot in Tuesday's primary special election for the seat of Democratic Rep. Alcee Hastings, who died in April after suffering from pancreatic cancer. One of the candidates is state Rep. Omari Hardy, who was 3 years old when Hastings was elected in 1992. Hastings was the longest-serving member of Florida’s congressional delegation.

Laverne Gore, Republican candidate for the Ohio 11th District U.S. congressional seat, smiles during a campaign stop at a Summit County Republican Party get-together in Stow, Ohio, Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2021. (AP Photo/Phil Long) © Provided by Associated Press Laverne Gore, Republican candidate for the Ohio 11th District U.S. congressional seat, smiles during a campaign stop at a Summit County Republican Party get-together in Stow, Ohio, Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2021. (AP Photo/Phil Long)

While two Republican candidates are also seeking the nomination to run for the 20th Congressional District seat, the district is heavily Democratic. The winner of the Democratic primary is considered a lock for January's general election.

Five Mayor's Races to Watch in Tuesday's Election

  Five Mayor's Races to Watch in Tuesday's Election Voters head to the polls to cast ballots for mayor in key American cities on Tuesday. © Spencer Platt/Getty Images People visit an early voting site at a YMCA in Brooklyn on October 25, 2021 in New York City. Over 30,000 New Yorkers have already cast their ballots in a series of races in New York City including for the election of the next mayor of the city. Election day is on November 2. Divisions that have played out in Washington between moderate and progressive Democrats are also very much alive in these races in predominantly Democratic cities as the party tries to chart its future.

FILE - In this  Friday, April 30, 2021 file photo, Florida Rep. Omari Hardy speaks during a legislative session at the Capitol in Tallahassee, Fla. Some candidates running to replace Democratic U.S. Rep. Alcee Hastings are saying it’s a “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity © Provided by Associated Press FILE - In this Friday, April 30, 2021 file photo, Florida Rep. Omari Hardy speaks during a legislative session at the Capitol in Tallahassee, Fla. Some candidates running to replace Democratic U.S. Rep. Alcee Hastings are saying it’s a “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity" to represent the diverse South Florida district. In this case, that’s hardly an exaggeration. Eleven Democrats are on the ballot in Tuesday’s primary special election, including state Rep. Omari Hardy, who was three years old when Hastings was elected in 1992.(AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee, File)

Turnout is expected to be low Tuesday, and it’s conceivable the next U.S. House member to represent the South Florida district can win the primary with 10% of the vote. The district is 61% Democratic and about 13% Republican. In the 2020 election, Hastings won 78.7% of the vote against Republican Greg Musselwhite. Musselwhite is again running for the GOP nomination, facing Jason Mariner.

State Sen. Perry Thurston and former state Rep. Priscilla Ann Taylor are also seeking the seat for Democrats, along with Broward County Commissioners Dale Holness and Barbara Sharief, both of whom previously served as county mayor. Others on the Democratic ballot are Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick, Elvin Dowling, Phil Jackson, Emmanuel Morel and Imran Uddin Siddiqui.

New Jersey governor, Ohio special elections: Here are the other races to watch on Election Day

  New Jersey governor, Ohio special elections: Here are the other races to watch on Election Day The New Jersey governor race, special elections for congressional seats in Ohio and big city mayoral contests all are on the ballot Tuesday.Though the race has drawn heavy-hitting Democratic surrogates to the Old Dominion, Democrat Terry McAuliffe and Republican Glenn Youngkin aren’t the only names on Tuesday's ballots that might hint at what to expect next year.

The district is a majority Black and covers parts of Broward and Palm Beach counties. Heading into Election Day, out of the more than 345,000 eligible primary voters, nearly 33,000 Democrats and more than 4,000 Republicans had already cast votes.

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Associated Press writer Brendan Farrington in Tallahassee, Fla., contributed to this report.

FACT FOCUS: Claim of 12K ‘found’ ballots in NJ is misleading .
A statement from the New Jersey state Senate president following his election defeat has generated confusion online in recent days after it vaguely asserted that thousands of ballots had been “found.” Democrat Steve Sweeney did not concede the race to newcomer Ed Durr. Instead, he issued a statement Thursday stating he was waiting for all the votes to be counted and made reference to “12,000 ballots” that had been “recently found in one county.” That statement was published by news outlets and the notion that thousands of ballots were “found” was later amplified on social media and in headlines by conservative websites.

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