Two years after Pat Roberts, Thad Cochran and Mitch McConnell labored through competitive primaries, four years after Richard Lugar lost his primary in Indiana, and six years after Bob Bennett and Lisa Murkowski lost their primaries, this year’s class of GOP senators have not only survived, but thrived in intra-party contests.
Murkowski avenged her 2010 primary loss to Joe Miller with a 72-15 percent victory in Alaska on Tuesday. And she’s not the only one who has done well.
Nineteen GOP senators have been renominated so far this year and none of them fell below 61 percent. They also averaged 86 percent of the vote and a 76-point margin of victory. Even without the nine senators who ran unopposed, senators facing at least one primary challenger averaged 74 percent of the vote and a 54-point victory margin.