Arizona and Florida vote in primary elections

8:09 p.m. ET, August 28, 2018

CNN projection: Trump-backed Ron DeSantis wins primary for Florida governor

Congressman Ron DeSantis, who received the high-profile backing of President Donald Trump, will win the Republican primary for governor in Florida, CNN projects.

DeSantis will defeat Florida's Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam. 

The Trump bump: Last month, the President hosted a rally in Tampa to support DeSantis (among other GOP candidates). The Florida Republican has even released a Trump-heavy campaign ad, which shows him reading Trump's "Art of the Deal" to his son and teaching his daughter to say "Make America Great Again."

7:32 p.m. ET, August 28, 2018

Polls in Arizona will close on time after Election Day snafu

Arizona voters make their way to a polling place to cast their vote in the state's Primary on Aug. 28, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona.
Arizona voters make their way to a polling place to cast their vote in the state's Primary on Aug. 28, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona.

The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors has rejected what it termed an "unprecedented" request by County Recorder Adrian Fontes to keep polls open an extra two hours today Tuesday.

Fontes, the top elections official in Arizona's most populous county, said he would petition to extend voting hours in the primary election Tuesday after a contractor failed to set up voting machines across the county's more than 500 precincts, delaying voting at several dozen polling locations.

In response, Steve Chucri, the Maricopa County supervisor, released on a statement on Twitter saying:

"Today we learned 62 polling places were not ready at the start of the day. Members of the Board were not told of any concerns yesterday, when the Recorder first became aware of issues, nor were members notified prior to the polls opening this morning. Now the Board is being asked to step in and take unprecedented action that may confuse voters, delay returns, and have other unintended consequences. We encourage any voter who wants to cast their ballot to be in line at any of your designated polling places by 7 pm and their vote will be counted."
7:30 p.m. ET, August 28, 2018

There's a hot Senate race in Florida, but today's primary is mostly a formality

There's a lot of attention on Florida this election cycle, as Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson fights to keep his seat.

But today's election results will not be all that exciting.

Nelson and GOP Gov. Rick Scott have been the presumptive nominees for months — meaning today's vote will only make them, finally, official nominees.

The two candidates have been sparring over everything from Russian election hacking to family border separations

So who's going to win come November? CNN rates this as a toss-up, and it will likely be one of the most expensive Senate races of the cycle.

7:09 p.m. ET, August 28, 2018

What to watch in the race for Florida governor

Republicans Adam Putnam and Ron DeSantis are both running for Florida governor.
Republicans Adam Putnam and Ron DeSantis are both running for Florida governor.

Polls have closed in most of Florida, where voters are set to decide which candidates will advance in what are expected to be competitive governor's, US Senate and US House races in November.

In the governor's race, candidates are looking to replace Gov. Rick Scott (who's running for Senate).

  • On the Republican side, Rep. Ron DeSantis hopes an endorsement from President Trump will outweigh state Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam's attacks on DeSantis as an out-of-touch creature of Washington.
  • DeSantis has closely aligned himself with Trump: Last month, the President hosted a rally in Tampa to support DeSantis (among other GOP candidates). The Florida Republican has even released a Trump-heavy campaign ad, which shows him reading Trump's "Art of the Deal" to his son and teaching his daughter to say "Make America Great Again."
  • On the Democratic side of the race, former Rep. Gwen Graham and Philip Levine, the former mayor of Miami Beach, look to be the front runners for the Democratic nomination. But Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum could surprise Democrats here. Democrats think any of the three can win, pointing to the slim margin they lost by in 2014.

We'll be watching the races here, so stay tuned for tonight's results.

6:41 p.m. ET, August 28, 2018

Arizona's largest county to petition to keep polls open later amid Election Day snafu

The top elections official in Arizona's most populous county said he will petition to extend voting hours in the primary election Tuesday, after a contractor failed to set up voting machines across the county's more than 500 precincts, delaying voting at several dozen polling locations.

"We want to make sure every voter has access," Maricopa County Recorder Adrian Fontes told CNN. Maricopa includes the city of Phoenix.

Voters are casting ballots Tuesday in Arizona's primary election, including a closely watched contest to decide the Republican nominee in the state's US Senate race. But voting initially hit a snag when a contractor hired to bring voting machines online in Maricopa County did not show up, the county recorder's office said Tuesday.

"This wasn't a problem of the machines. Our technology works well," said Fontes. "The problem was the actual setup of the technology in the polling places."

Officials declined to disclose the name of the contractor, whom they said they had used previously without issue. Fontes said he first learned of the issue Monday afternoon but decided not to publicize it so as not to risk suppressing voter turnout.

Keep reading.

6:14 p.m. ET, August 28, 2018

Arizona is voting today — but not to fill Sen. John McCain's seat

Sen. John McCain in Phoenix, Arizona, in 2017
Sen. John McCain in Phoenix, Arizona, in 2017 Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images

It's election day in Arizona, as the state — and the nation — mourns the death of John McCain.

But voters are not selecting someone to fill McCain's Senate seat.

Instead, under Arizona law, it's up to Gov. Doug Ducey to fill Senate vacancies until a special election is held in 2020. (Because the vacancy occurred after the state's cut-off date of May 30, the special election will take place in 2020, rather than 2018.)

Ducey said in a statement that he would not name a successor until after McCain was buried later this week.

"Now is a time for remembering and honoring a consequential life well lived," Ducey said in the statement.

In the year since McCain was diagnosed with brain cancer, Ducey — who faces a tough re-election race this year — has refused to talk about who he might appoint to the seat.

5:25 p.m. ET, August 28, 2018

It's election day in Arizona, Florida, and Oklahoma. Here's what you need to know.

Voters in Florida and Arizona are heading to the polls today to vote in their states' primaries, while Oklahoma voters have a runoff election to pick the Republican nominee for governor.

What to watch in Arizona: If Democrats have any chance of taking back the Senate, they will have to win in Arizona. Republican Jeff Flake's retirement opened the seat up, and both sides are already campaigning hard for it. While we're expecting Rep. Kyrsten Sinema to be the Democratic nominee, Republicans will choose between Rep. Martha McSally, former Sheriff Joe Arpaio and former state Sen. Kelli Ward. Most polls close by 10 p.m. ET. Maricopa County may stay open later due to a voting machines snafu.

What to watch in Florida: Democrats could show some strength in Florida, where one Republican-held seat is already ranked as a toss-up by CNN. GOP Rep. Carlos Curbelo is in danger of losing his seat composing the southern tip of the state. GOP Rep. Ron DeSantis is running for governor, and fellow GOP Rep. Dennis Ross is retiring. Polls close at 7 p.m. ET, or 8 p.m. ET if they are in Central Time.

What to watch in Oklahoma: Democrat Drew Edmondson already won his primary back in June. Tonight, former Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett and Tulsa businessman Kevin Stitt will face off in the Republican runoff. Polls close at 8 p.m. ET.