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Special elections to the 110th United States Congress: Wikis


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During the 110th United States Congress, there were two special elections for seats in the Senate, both in 2008, and 13 for seats in the House, five in 2007 and eight in 2008. Democrats gained three House seats at the expense of Republicans in 2008, but the incumbent party won all the other special elections.



State Election date
(links to special
election article)
Reason for vacancy Appointee Winner Term ends
Wyoming 02008-11-04 November 4, 2008 Craig Thomas (R) Died June 4, 2007 John Barrasso (R) John Barrasso (R) 02013-01-03 January 3, 2013
Mississippi 02008-11-04 November 4, 2008 Trent Lott (R) Resigned December 18, 2007 Roger Wicker (R) Roger Wicker (R) 02013-01-03 January 3, 2013


Roger Wicker, formerly the representative of Mississippi's 1st congressional district, was appointed by Governor Haley Barbour on December 31, 2007, to fill the vacancy caused by the December 18 resignation of Trent Lott.[1][2] It had been speculated that Lott wished to resign before a new lobbying reform law, effective the first day of 2008, took effect; having resigned before the end of 2007, Lott may become a lobbyist in 2009 instead of 2010.[2] Controversy arose when Barbour called for the special election to be held on the same day as the general election. As a result, Mississippi's Attorney General Jim Hood challenged Barbour in court, claiming that the special election needed to be held within 100 days of Lott's resignation, as per state law.[3] Initially, a Mississippi Circuit Court judge sided with Hood, ruling that the election take place on or before March 19, 2008.[4] However, Barbour filed an appeal to the Mississippi Supreme Court, which overturned the earlier ruling and set the special election for November 4, 2008.[5][6]

Democratic former Governor Ronnie Musgrove challenged Wicker. Another Democrat, former Congressman Ronnie Shows, also filed to run, but he withdrew in February 2008 and endorsed Musgrove.[7][8] Wicker beat Musgrove 55% to 45%.


John Barrasso was appointed by Governor Dave Freudenthal (D) on June 22, 2007 to fill the senate seat of Republican Craig L. Thomas, who died on June 4.[9] Wyoming law requires that the interim senator be affiliated with the same political party as the departed senator. Barrasso ran in the November 4, 2008 special election, held on the day of the 2008 presidential election, to serve out the remainder of Thomas' term, which expires in January 2013.[10]

On the Democratic side, Casper City Councilman Keith Goodenough announced his candidacy.[11] In the primary on August 19, Goodenough was defeated by a political newcomer, Gillette defense attorney Nick Carter, who became Barrasso's opponent in the general election.[12]

Barrasso won on election day, taking 73% of the vote and winning every county in the state.

House of Representatives

The thirteen special elections to the 110th United States Congress are listed below by election date.

District Election date
(links to special
election article)
Prior incumbent Reason for vacancy Winner
Georgia 10th July 17, 2007 Charlie Norwood Died on February 13, 2007 Paul Broun
California 37th August 21, 2007 Juanita Millender-McDonald Died on April 22, 2007 Laura Richardson
Massachusetts 5th October 16, 2007 Marty Meehan Resigned on July 1, 2007, to become Chancellor of the University of Massachusetts, Lowell Niki Tsongas
Ohio 5th December 11, 2007 Paul Gillmor Died on September 5, 2007 Bob Latta
Virginia 1st December 11, 2007 Jo Ann Davis Died on October 6, 2007 Rob Wittman
Illinois's 14th March 8, 2008 Dennis Hastert Resigned on November 26, 2007 Bill Foster
Indiana 7th March 11, 2008 Julia Carson Died on December 17, 2007 André Carson
California 12th April 8, 2008 Tom Lantos Died on February 11, 2008 Jackie Speier
Louisiana 1st May 3, 2008 Bobby Jindal Resigned on January 14, 2008 to become Governor of Louisiana Steve Scalise
Louisiana 6th May 3, 2008 Richard Baker Resigned on February 2, 2008, to become Director of the Managed Funds Association.[13] Don Cazayoux
Mississippi 1st May 13, 2008 Roger Wicker Resigned on December 31, 2007, upon his appointment to the United States Senate Travis Childers
Maryland 4th June 17, 2008 Albert Wynn Resigned effective May 31, 2008, after losing the Democratic primary for the following term to Donna Edwards Donna Edwards
Ohio 11th November 18, 2008 Stephanie Tubbs Jones Died on August 20, 2008 Marcia Fudge
Democratic Party Republican Party


  1. ^ "Miss. Congressman Replacing Sen. Lott". ABC News.  
  2. ^ a b "Lott Officially Resigns, All Eyes Now on Barbour". CQ Politics.  
  3. ^ "Hood Files Suit to Have Special Election Earlier". WLBT 3 - Jackson, MS:.  
  4. ^ "Miss. judge cancels special election to replace Lott".  
  5. ^ "Barbour's Attorney Appeals Special-Elex Ruling". WLBT 3 - Jackson, MS:.  
  6. ^ "Mississippi Supreme Court sets election for November".  
  7. ^ "Former Rep. Shows running for Lott's seat".  
  8. ^ "Shows drops out of race to replace Lott".  
  9. ^ "Governor picks Barrasso". Casper Star-Tribune. 2007-06-22. Retrieved 2007-06-22.  
  10. ^ Martin Kady II (2007-06-05). "Senate Mourns Death of Wyoming Republican Craig Thomas". CQ Politics. Retrieved 2007-06-05.  
  11. ^ Goodenough announces Senate bid against Barrasso | KULR-8 TELEVISION - Billings, Montana | Wyoming State News
  12. ^ Political newcomer Carter will face Barrasso The Associated Press. August 21, 2008. The Billings Gazette.
  13. ^ Garard Shields (2008-02-02). "Baker departs public office".  

See also


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