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United States elections, 2002: Wikis


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The 2002 elections in the United States were held on November 5, 2002, two years after President George W. Bush won the 2000 Presidential election. The elections were held just a little under fourteen months after the September 11, 2001 attacks. Thus the elections were heavily overshadowed by the war on terror, the impending war with Iraq, and Paul Wellstone's sudden death about one week before the election.


Federal elections


United States Congressional elections

Despite being the incumbent party in the White House, which is usually a disadvantage for the President's party during midterm Congressional elections, Republicans achieved gains in both chambers of the United States Congress

United States Senate elections

2002 Senate election map.svg

During the 2002 U.S. Senate elections, all thirty-three regularly scheduled Class II Senate seats as well as a special election in Missouri were held.

In the United States Senate elections, the Republican Party achieved an over all net-gain of two seats with victories in Georgia, Minnesota, and Missouri while the Democrats took a seat in Arkansas. Thus, the balance of power in the Senate changed from 51 (including Independent Senator Jim Jeffords) to 49 Democratic Majority to 51-49 Republican Majority.

United States House of Representatives elections

Dark red indicates a Republican hold, light red a Republican pickup, dark blue a Democratic hold, light blue a Democratic pickup, and dark gray an Independent hold.
     80.1-100% Republican      80.1-100% Democratic
     60.1-80% Republican      60.1-80% Democratic
     50.1-60% Republican      50.1-60% Democratic
       80.1-100% Independent
House seats by party holding plurality in state

During the 2002 House elections, all 435 seats in the House of Representatives plus five of the six non-voting Delegates from non-state districts were up for election that year. These elections were the first to be held following redistricting in apportionment according to the 2000 United States Census.

Republicans succeeded in expanding their majority in the House of Representatives by a net gain of eight, resulting in an 229-204 (excluding Delegates) Republican majority.

In addition to all regularly scheduled House elections, there were two special elections held, one for Oklahoma's 1st congressional district on January 8 and another for Hawaii's 2nd congressional district on November 30.

State elections

Gubernatorial elections

Dark red indictates a Republican hold, light red a Republican pickup, dark blue a Democratic hold, and light blue a Democratic pickup. The results of gubernatorial elections in Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands (not shown on this map) were a Republican pickup and Democratic hold respectively. All other states in gray did not have gubernatorial elections that year.

During the 2002 gubernatorial elections, the governorships of the thirty-six states, two territories, and the District of Columbia were up for election.

Going into the elections, Republicans held the governorships of twenty-seven states and one territory (that being the Northern Mariana Islands), Democrats held those of twenty-one states, four territories, and the Mayorship of the District of Columbia, and two governorships were held by incumbents of neither party (those being Angus King (I-ME) and Jesse Ventura (MIP-MN)). Following the elections, Republicans sustained a net loss of one state governorship (but did gain the governorship of the territory of Guam), Democrats gained an overall net gain of three state governorships and held on to all other territorial governorships and the Mayorship of the District of Columbia, and there would be no governorships held by Indepedents or third parties. Thus the balance of power (excluding non-state entities) would be changed from 27-21 Republican majority to 26-24 Republican Majority.

Other state-wide Officer elections

In some states where the positions were elective offices, voters elected candidates for state executive branch offices (Lieutenant Governors (though some were elected on the same ticket as the gubernatorial nominee), Secretary of state, state Treasurer, state Auditor, state Attorney General, state Superintendent of Education, Commissioners of Insurance, Agriculture or, Labor, and etc.) and state judicial branch offices (seats on state Supreme Courts and, in some states, state appellate courts).

State Legislative elections

In 2002, the seats of the Legislatures of forty-six states and five non-state entities were up for election that year.

Republicans captured eight legislative chambers from Democrats and also won the majority of state legislative seats for the first time in half a century.[1]

Initiatives and Referendums

Local elections

Nationwide, there were some cities, counties, school boards, special districts and others that elected members in 2002.

Mayoral elections

During 2002, some major American cities held their mayoral elections that year, the most notable being the Washington, D.C. mayoral election.

  • Anaheim- Former State Assembly Speaker Curt Pringle (R) came out of retirement from politics to run and subsequently win election as Mayor of Anaheim, California.
  • Ann Arbor- Incumbent Mayor John Hieftje (D) was re-elected.
  • Athens, Georgia- Former Director of Leadership Athens Heidi Davison (D) defeated incumbent Mayor Doc Eldridge (D).
  • Augusta, Georgia- Incumbent Mayor Bob Young (R), won re-election against former Mayor Ed McIntyre.[2]
  • Berkeley, California- Incumbent Mayor Shirley Dean (D) was defeated by former state Assemblyman Tom Bates (D).
  • Bismarck, North Dakota- Orthodontist John Warford (R) was elected Mayor of Bismarck in 2002.
  • Chesapeake, Virginia- Incumbent Mayor William Ward was re-elected.
  • Columbia, South Carolina- Incumbent mayor Bob Coble (D) was re-elected.
  • Columbus, Georgia- Councilman Robert Poydasheff won an open seat race to succeed outgoing Mayor Bobby Peters.
  • Cranston, Rhode Island- Businessman Steve Laffey (R) won an open seat election to succeed Mayor John O'Leary.
  • Dallas- Councilwoman Laura Miller (D) won a special election to succeed resigning mayor Ron Kirk (D), who made an unsuccessful run for the United States Senate. Dallas was the most populous city in the nation to hold a mayoral election in 2002.
  • Dover, Delaware- Incumbent mayor James L. Hutchison, Sr (R) was re-elected without opposition.[3]
  • Fargo, North Dakota- Incumbent Mayor Bruce Furness (R) was re-elected.
  • Flint, Michigan- Mayor Woodrow Stanley (D) was recalled in 2002 and replaced by former Mayor James W. Rutherford (D) who would serve until 2004.
  • Independence, Missouri- Incumbent Mayor Ron Stewart (D) was re-elected.[4]
  • Lexington, Kentucky- former Councilwoman Teresa Isaac (D) defeated attorney Scott Crosbie in open seat election to succeed outgoing mayor Pam Miller (D).[5]
  • Long Beach, California- Incumbent Mayor Beverly O’Neill was re-elected.
  • Louisville- Former Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson (D) was elected mayor of the newly created Consolidated city–county of Louisville-Jefferson County[6] (created as the result of the merger of Louisville city and Jefferson County governments).
  • Montpelier- Incumbent Mayor Chuck Karparis was re-elected.
  • Newark, New Jersey- Incumbent Mayor Sharpe James (D) defeated Councilman Cory Booker (D) to win re-election to an unprecedented fifth term, thus making him Newark's longest serving mayor in its history. This election was the subject of the 2005 documentary Street Fight.
  • New Orleans- Vice president and regional general manager of Cox Communications Ray Nagin (D) won an open seat election to succeed outgoing Mayor Marc Morial (D).
  • Oakland- Incumbent Mayor of Oakland (and former Governor of California) Jerry Brown (D) was re-elected.
  • Oklahoma City- Incumbent Mayor Kirk Humphreys (R) was re-elected.
  • Orange, California- Incumbent Mayor Mark Murphy was re-elected.
  • Plano, Texas- Former Councilwoman Pat Evans (R) was elected Mayor of Plano.
  • Providence, Rhode Island- state Representative David Cicilline (D) won an open seat election to succeed acting Mayor John J. Lombardi. Cicilline thus became the first openly gay mayor of a state capital city and Providence would remain the largest American to have an openly gay mayor[7] until Sam Adams' inauguration as Mayor of Portland, Oregon on January 1, 2009.
  • Reno- former Lt. Governor of Nevada Bob Cashell (R) was elected Mayor in 2002.
  • Salem, Oregon- Janet Taylor was elected Mayor of Salem to succeed outgoing Mayor Mike Swaim.[8]
  • San Jose, California- Incumbent Mayor Ron Gonzales was re-elected.
  • Santa Fe- Incumbent Mayor Larry Delgado (D) was re-elected.
  • Sioux Falls, South Dakota- Former state Senator Dave Munson (R) was elected Mayor of Sioux Falls in 2002.
  • Trenton, New Jersey- Incumbent Mayor Douglas Palmer (D) was re-elected.
  • Tulsa- Bill LaFortune (R), a former state Assistant Attorney General of Oklahoma, was elected to succeed outgoing mayor M. Susan Savage (D).
  • Washington, D.C.- Incumbent Mayor Anthony A. Williams (D) was re-elected to a second term defeating Councilwoman Carol Schwartz (R).

Other County and Municipal elections



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