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Nebraska, Oklahoma voters look to fill empty congressional seats Tuesday

Nebraska, Oklahoma voters look to fill empty congressional seats Tuesday
Oklahoma, Utah and South Carolina will hold primaries Tuesday night while Nebraska will hold a special election. File Photo by Mike Theiler/UPI | License Photo

June 28 (UPI) -- Voters in Nebraska and Oklahoma will look to fill empty seats while Utah and South Carolina hold primary elections Tuesday night.

A special election in Nebraska will seek to fill the seat left open by Republican Rep. Jeff Fortenberry and Oklahoma will decide who will replace retiring Sen. Jim Inhofe, while incumbent Sen. Mike Lee looks to ward off challengers in Utah and a pair of Democrats battle in a runoff to face Republican Sen. Tim Scott in November.

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Nebraska

On Tuesday, Nebraska voters took to the polls in a special election to fill the seat left empty by Fortenberry who resigned in March.

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Republican state Sen. Mike Flood was projected to take the victory against Democratic state Sen. Patty Pansing Brooks, garnering 52.1% of the vote to Pansing Brooks' 47.9% with 93% of ballots tallied, according to The Washington Post.

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The race was conducted in the post-redistricting 1st District despite the fact the winner will finish the term that Fortenberry was elected to represent under the old district lines.

"Though we came up a bit short tonight, our numbers at the polls today prove that we're on the right track to win our ultimate goal" a full term in November," Pansing Brooks said in a statement published shortly before midnight.

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Oklahoma

A total of 13 Republicans were on the ballot for a special primary election to replace Inhofe, who is set to resign at the end of the year with Rep. Markwayne Mullin and former state House Speaker T.W. Shannon emerging from the pack for a runoff election.

According to state election data, Mullin had received 43.6% and Shannon had garnered 17.5%.

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Scott Pruitt, former state attorney general and Trump-era Environment Protection Agency administrator, earned 5%.

There were also 14 Republicans vying for Mullin's seat representing the 2nd District, which also ended in a runoff between state Rep. Avery Frix and former Sen. Josh Brecheen.

According state data, Frix led the pack with 14.74% of the vote followed by Brecheen who had 13.75%.

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Utah

Lee was projected to secure a bid to face off against independent Evan McMullin in the general election, winning 61.5% of the vote, with 81% of votes counted.

He warded off challenges from state Rep. Becky Edwards and businesswoman Ally Isom who have criticized him for his partisan politics and his strategizing with the Trump White House to challenge the results of the 2020 election.

In the state's 1st District, incumbent Rep. Blake Moore faces challenges from retired intelligence officer Andrew Badger and former Morgan County Councilmember Tina Cannon.

South Carolina

Voters in South Carolina cast ballots in a runoff contest to determine who will challenge Scott in November.

Krystle Matthews -- who serves in the state House of Representatives and wrangled the seat away from incumbent Republican Bill Crosby in 2018 before warding off a challenge from Republican challenger Jordan Pace in 2020 -- was projected to win after earning 55.8% of the vote with 98% of votes counted.

She bested Catherine Fleming Bruce, author and entrepreneur who said she brought a new perspective to the race, citing her participation in the United Nations Summit.

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