Georgia, Alabama, Arkansas, Texas and Minnesota elections

By Maureen Chowdhury, Aditi Sangal, Melissa Macaya, JiMin Lee, Mike Hayes and Meg Wagner, CNN

Updated 3:01 PM ET, Wed May 25, 2022
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8:50 p.m. ET, May 24, 2022

CNN Projection: Brian Kemp will win Georgia's GOP gubernatorial primary

From CNN's Eric Bradner, Ethan Cohen and Melissa Holzberg DePalo

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp walks onstage for a campaign event attended by former US Vice President Mike Pence at the Cobb County International Airport on May 23 in Kennesaw, Georgia.
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp walks onstage for a campaign event attended by former US Vice President Mike Pence at the Cobb County International Airport on May 23 in Kennesaw, Georgia. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp will win the state’s GOP gubernatorial nomination, CNN projects, defeating Trump-backed candidate David Perdue.

The governor moves on to a rematch with Democrat Stacey Abrams, the former state legislative leader whom he narrowly defeated in 2018 and who was unopposed in her primary Tuesday.

The outcome represents a blow for Trump, who had made Kemp his top target for more than a year after the governor rejected Trump’s lies about widespread election fraud in 2020 and refused to overturn the presidential result in his state.

Trump had urged Perdue to run and supported him throughout the race. But Kemp — who was broadly backed by other prominent Republicans and campaigned on the eve of the election with Trump’s vice president, Mike Pence — managed to maintain the support of many Trump supporters in Georgia despite the former President’s efforts.

In backing Kemp, Georgia Republican primary voters demonstrated that while Trump remains the dominant figure within the GOP, there are limits to his influence.

Trump’s endorsements have shaped open-seat races this cycle, catapulting venture capitalist and author J.D. Vance to a win in Ohio’s Senate primary. But Trump-backed candidates have lost a series of races in recent weeks as well: North Carolina voters ousted US Rep. Madison Cawthorn despite Trump’s pleas to give him a “second chance,” while in Nebraska, it was outgoing Gov. Pete Ricketts’ support that carried more weight, with his endorsed candidate besting Trump’s pick in the Republican gubernatorial primary.

Kemp, aside from his clash with Trump, has a record that makes him popular with GOP voters in Georgia. He reopened the state early during the coronavirus pandemic – a move that even then-President Trump said was “too soon.” He signed into law a restrictive new voting measure that placed limits on mail-in voting. He helped impose a gas tax holiday. He also took conservatives’ side in brewing cultural battles over schools.

Kemp is also a proven winner, having defeated Abrams in one of the nation’s most closely watched governor’s races in 2018. Perdue, meanwhile, lost his Senate seat in a runoff to Democrat Jon Ossoff last year.

8:31 p.m. ET, May 24, 2022

Polls are closing across Arkansas

From CNN's Rachel Janfaza, Ethan Cohen and Melissa Holzberg DePalo

W.J. Monagle votes in the Arkansas primary election in Little Rock on Tuesday, May 24.
W.J. Monagle votes in the Arkansas primary election in Little Rock on Tuesday, May 24. (Stephen Swofford/The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette/AP)

It's 8:30 p.m. ET and polls are now closing in Arkansas.

Key races we are tracking: Former Trump White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders is expected to win the GOP nomination for governor and would be a big favorite in November to win the office previously held by her father, Mike Huckabee.

The state's senior senator, Republican John Boozman, also faces several primary challengers Tuesday.

8:01 p.m. ET, May 24, 2022

Polls are closing across Alabama

From CNN's Rachel Janfaza, Ethan Cohen and Melissa Holzberg DePalo

Voters arrive to cast ballots at a polling location in Huntsville, Alabama, on May 24.
Voters arrive to cast ballots at a polling location in Huntsville, Alabama, on May 24. (Andi Rice/Bloomberg/Getty Images)

It's 8 p.m ET and polls are now closing in Alabama.

Key races we are tracking: There's a three-way race in the GOP primary to succeed retiring Republican Sen. Richard Shelby. Trump previously endorsed Rep. Mo Brooks but rescinded that endorsement in March.

Republican Gov. Kay Ivey faces several primary challengers in her bid for a second full term.

Read more about today's primaries here.

9:33 p.m. ET, May 24, 2022

CNN Projection: Herschel Walker will win the Republican primary for Senate in Georgia

Herschel Walker speaks at a primary watch party on May 23 in Athens, Georgia.
Herschel Walker speaks at a primary watch party on May 23 in Athens, Georgia. (Akili-Casundria Ramsess/AP)

Herschel Walker will win Georgia's Republican primary for Senate, CNN projects.

He will face Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock in November.

Walker, 60, who was urged to run by former President Donald Trump, is a political newcomer — but a celebrity in the state where he won the 1982 Heisman Trophy as one of college football’s greatest running backs of all time at the University of Georgia. 

His Senate run has shined light on a series of personal scandals, including allegations of domestic violence and threats against former romantic partners. 

Still, Walker breezed through the primary, skipping debates and forums that would have forced him to take clear policy positions and answer tough questions. His primary competitor was Gary Black, the state’s long-time agriculture commissioner, but Black did not raise enough money to run a serious television advertising campaign that would have exploited Walker’s vulnerabilities. 

7:43 p.m. ET, May 24, 2022

Kemp "heartbroken" over Texas shooting, calling it "depraved" and "incomprehensible"

From CNN's Michael Warren and Jeff Zeleny

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp issued a written statement about the deadly school shooting in Texas shortly before polls closed Tuesday in the state.

“For children and innocent adults, including a school teacher to be taken from this world in such a depraved, violent way, it is incomprehensible,” Kemp said in his statement. “We are lifting up the families of these victims, the first responders on the scene, and the entire community in prayer.”

The statement is expected to be Kemp’s only comment on the shooting Tuesday, although the Kemp campaign plans to hold a moment of silence before his remarks at the election night party.

The party, which is being held at the College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta, began just as polls closed at 7 p.m. ET.

Attendees are slowly entering the venue, where the campaign is serving burgers and barbecue while they await the results, which are displayed on two screens on either side of the main room. Kemp is favored to win renomination, though the question remains whether he will get more than 50% of the vote over his challenger, David Perdue, and avoid a runoff.

1:53 a.m. ET, May 25, 2022

CNN Projection: Raphael Warnock will win Georgia's Democratic Senate primary

Sen. Raphael Warnock speaks at the Gwinnett County Democratic Party fundraiser on May 21 in Norcross, Georgia.
Sen. Raphael Warnock speaks at the Gwinnett County Democratic Party fundraiser on May 21 in Norcross, Georgia. (Akili-Casundria Ramsess/AP)

Incumbent Raphael Warnock will win the Democratic primary for his Senate reelection bid in Georgia, CNN projects.

7:48 p.m. ET, May 24, 2022

CNN Projection: Stacey Abrams will win Georgia's Democratic primary for governor

Stacey Abrams talks to the media during Georgia's primary election on Tuesday, May 24 in Atlanta.
Stacey Abrams talks to the media during Georgia's primary election on Tuesday, May 24 in Atlanta. (Brynn Anderson/AP)

Stacey Abrams will win Georgia's Democratic gubernatorial primary, CNN projects.

Abrams was uncontested in the primary and will become the Democratic nominee for governor in the Peach State for the second time, though her status has changed since her name was last on the ballot in 2018.

An underdog with little following outside of Georgia four years ago, the former state House minority leader is now one of the most popular Democrats in the country. Abrams is now a political star and some in the party want her to run for president. She is also seen as a key figure in helping turn the state blue for Joe Biden in 2020 and electing Democratic Sens. Raphael Warnock, who is on the ballot again this year, and Jon Ossoff in subsequent runoffs.

7:10 p.m. ET, May 24, 2022

Stacey Abrams expresses support for families of Texas school shooting victims

From CNN's Eva McKend

Democratic gubernatorial candidate for Georgia Stacey Abrams has expressed her support for the families of those killed in the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas.

“To the families of Uvalde, we weep with you in your grief and ask for God’s solace for your unfathomable pain. May your angels be lifted up to spite the darkness that took them. And may the light of reason and compassion save the lives of others in their namesake. #Uvalde,” Abrams wrote in a tweet

Abrams, who is running unopposed in the Tuesday Democratic primary, has made gun safety a key pillar of her campaign. She’s routinely called out Republican Gov. Brian Kemp for signing a bill into law allowing most residents to carry a concealed gun without a license.

Kemp signed the bill earlier this year. Supporters of the law refer to it as "constitutional carry.”

7:28 p.m. ET, May 24, 2022

Polls are closing across Georgia

From CNN's Rachel Janfaza, Ethan Cohen and Melissa Holzberg DePalo

A person works the voting machines earlier in the day during Georgia's primary election on May 24 in Atlanta.
A person works the voting machines earlier in the day during Georgia's primary election on May 24 in Atlanta. (Brynn Anderson/AP)

It's 7 p.m. ET and polls are now closing in Georgia. Some polls are also closing in parts of Alabama.

Key races we are tracking: Incumbent Republican Gov. Brian Kemp faces a primary challenge from former US Sen. David Perdue. Former President Donald Trump, angry at Kemp's role in certifying the 2020 election in the Peach State, is supporting Perdue, but recent polling has shown Kemp with a big lead.

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, who also earned Trump's ire for defending the 2020 election results, faces several challengers, including Trump-backed US Rep. Jody Hice.

Meanwhile, Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock and Republican Herschel Walker, a former football star, are expected to win their primaries Tuesday to face off in a key Senate contest this fall.

Read more about today's primaries here.