United States Senate elections, 1974 and 1975

Last updated on 7 October 2017

The 1974 United States Senate elections[1] were held in the wake of the Watergate scandal, Richard M. Nixon's resignation from the presidency, and Gerald Ford's subsequent pardon of Nixon. Economic issues, specifically inflation and stagnation, were also a factor that contributed to Republican losses.[3] Democrats made a net gain of three seats from the Republicans. Following the 1974 elections, the Democratic caucus controlled 60 seats (including one independent) and the Republican caucus controlled 39 seats (including one Conservative).

Democrats gained an additional seat in 1975 when Democrat John A. Durkin won a special election in New Hampshire that was held after the 1974 election resulted in two recounts and an extended dispute in the Senate.

This was the last Senate election where the Democrat won Orange County, California in a race with Republican opposition.

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Michael Joseph Mansfield.jpg
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SenHughScott.jpg
1974 Senate election map.svg
1974 Senate election map.svg

Gains and losses

Democrats won open seats in Vermont and Florida and unseated incumbents Peter H. Dominick (R-CO) and Marlow Cook (R-KY). Republicans took an open seat in Nevada, where Republican Paul Laxalt defeated Harry Reid by 624 votes. The election also produced other close results; Milton Young (R-ND) won reelection against Democrat William L. Guy by only 186 votes and Henry Bellmon (R-OK) won reelection against Democrat Ed Edmondson by half a percent of the vote. Bob Dole (R-KS) survived the closest election of his career against Democratic Rep. William Roy, a race undoubtedly made close due to Dole's close association with Nixon as chairman of the Republican National Committee. It was the closest the Democrats have come to winning a Senate election in Kansas since George McGill won re-election in 1932 (McGill was defeated by Clyde M. Reed in 1938).

Results summary

Parties Total Seats Popular Vote
Incum
bents
Not up This election Result +/- Vote  %
Up Re-
elected
Held Gained Lost
Democratic 57 37 20 15 4 Increase 4 Decrease 1 60 Increase 3 22,544,761 55.24%
Republican 41 27 14 8 2 Increase 1 Decrease 4 38 Decrease 3 16,145,793 39.56%
Conservative (N.Y.) 1 1 0 Steady Steady Steady Steady 1 Steady 822,584 2.02%
Independent 1 1 0 Steady Steady Steady Steady 1 Steady 199,108 <0.01%
Others 0 Steady Steady Steady Steady Steady Steady 0 Steady 1,098,146 2.69%
Total 100 66 34 23 6 Increase 5 Decrease 5 100 Steady 40,810,392 100.0%

Source: "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 4, 1974 [sic]" (PDF). Office of the Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives. 1975. Retrieved July 8, 2014.

Change in Senate composition

Before the elections

After the January 4, 1974 appointment in Ohio.

D1 D2 D3 D4 D5 D6 D7 D8 D9 D10
D20 D19 D18 D17 D16 D15 D14 D13 D12 D11
D21 D22 D23 D24 D25 D26 D27 D28 D29 D30
D40
Ran
D39
Ran
D38
Ran
D37 D36 D35 D34 D33 D32 D31
D41
Ran
D42
Ran
D43
Ran
D44
Ran
D45
Ran
D46
Ran
D47
Ran
D48
Ran
D49
Ran
D50
Ran
Majority → D51
Ran
R41
Retired
C1 I1 D57
Retired
D56
Retired
D55
Retired
D54
Ran
D53
Ran
D52
Ran
R40
Retired
R39
Retired
R38
Retired
R37
Ran
R36
Ran
R35
Ran
R34
Ran
R33
Ran
R32
Ran
R31
Ran
R21 R22 R23 R24 R25 R26 R27 R28
Ran
R29
Ran
R30
Ran
R20 R19 R18 R17 R16 R15 R14 R13 R12 R11
R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 R6 R7 R8 R9 R10

After the general elections

D1 D2 D3 D4 D5 D6 D7 D8 D9 D10
D20 D19 D18 D17 D16 D15 D14 D13 D12 D11
D21 D22 D23 D24 D25 D26 D27 D28 D29 D30
D40
Re-elected
D39
Re-elected
D38
Re-elected
D37 D36 D35 D34 D33 D32 D31
D41
Re-elected
D42
Re-elected
D43
Re-elected
D44
Re-elected
D45
Re-elected
D46
Re-elected
D47
Re-elected
D48
Re-elected
D49
Re-elected
D50
Re-elected
Majority → D51
Re-elected
D60
Gain
D59
Gain
D58
Gain
D57
Hold
D56
Hold
D55
Hold
D54
Hold
D53
Re-elected
D52
Re-elected
I1 C1 R38
Gain
R37
Hold
R36
Hold
R35
Re-elected
R34
Re-elected
R33
Re-elected
R32
Re-elected
R31
Re-elected
R21 R22 R23 R24 R25 R26 R27 R28
Re-elected
R29
Re-elected
R30
Re-elected
R20 R19 R18 R17 R16 R15 R14 R13 R12 R11
R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 R6 R7 R8 R9 R10
Key:
C# Conservative (N.Y.)
D# Democratic
R# Republican
I# Independent

Race summary

Elections leading to the next Congress

In these general elections, the winners were elected for the term beginning January 3, 1975; ordered by state.

All of the elections involved the Class 3 seats.

State
(linked to
summaries below)
Incumbent Results Candidates
Senator Party Electoral history
Alabama James Allen Democratic 1968 Incumbent re-elected. James Allen (Democratic) 95.8%
Alvin Abercrombie (Prohibition) 4.2%
Alaska Mike Gravel Democratic 1968 Incumbent re-elected. Mike Gravel (Democratic) 58.3%
C. R. Lewis (Republican) 41.7%
Arizona Barry Goldwater Republican 1952
1958
1964 (Retired)
1968
Incumbent re-elected. Barry Goldwater (Republican) 58.3%
Jonathan Marshall (Democratic) 41.7%
Arkansas J. William Fulbright Democratic 1944
1950
1956
1962
1968
Incumbent lost renomination.
New senator elected.
Democratic hold.
Dale Bumpers (Democratic) 84.9%
John H. Jones (Republican) 15.1%
California Alan Cranston Democratic 1968 Incumbent re-elected. Alan Cranston (Democratic) 60.5%
H. L. Richardson (Republican) 36.2%
Jack McCoy (American Independent) 1.7%
Gayle M. Justice (Peace and Freedom) 1.6%
Colorado Peter H. Dominick Republican 1968 Incumbent lost re-election.
New senator elected.
Democratic gain.
Gary Hart (Democratic) 57.2%
Peter H. Dominick (Republican) 39.5%
John McCandish King (Independent) 2.0%
Joseph Fred Hyskell (Prohibition) 1.0%
Henry John Olshaw (American) 0.3%
Connecticut Abraham A. Ribicoff Democratic 1962
1968
Incumbent re-elected. Abraham A. Ribicoff (Democratic) 63.7%
James H. Brannen III (Republican) 34.3%
Florida Edward J. Gurney Republican 1968 Incumbent retired.
New senator elected.
Democratic gain.
Richard Stone (Democratic) 43.4%
Jack Eckerd (Republican) 40.9%
John Grady (American) 15.7%
Georgia Herman Talmadge Democratic 1956
1962
1968
Incumbent re-elected. Herman Talmadge (Democratic) 71.7%
Jerry Johnson (Republican) 28.2%
Hawaii Daniel Inouye Democratic 1962
1968
Incumbent re-elected. Daniel Inouye (Democratic) 82.9%
James D. Kimmel (Independent) 17.1%
Idaho Frank Church Democratic 1956
1962
1968
Incumbent re-elected. Frank Church (Democratic) 56.1%
Robert L. Smith (Republican) 42.1%
Jean Stoddard (American) 1.8%
Illinois Adlai Stevenson III Democratic 1970 (Special) Incumbent re-elected. Adlai Stevenson III (Democratic) 62.2%
George M. Burditt (Republican) 37.2%
Indiana Birch Bayh Democratic 1962
1968
Incumbent re-elected. Birch Bayh (Democratic) 50.7%
Richard Lugar (Republican) 46.4%
Don L. Lee (American) 2.8%
Iowa Harold Hughes Democratic 1968 Incumbent retired.
New senator elected.
Democratic hold.
John Culver (Democratic) 50.0%
David M. Stanley (Republican) 49.3%
Kansas Bob Dole Republican 1968 Incumbent re-elected. Bob Dole (Republican) 50.9%
William R. Roy (Democratic) 49.1%
Kentucky Marlow Cook Republican 1956
1962
1968
Incumbent lost re-election.
New senator elected.
Democratic gain.
Wendell Ford (Democratic) 53.5%
Marlow Cook (Republican) 44.1%
William E. Parker (American) 2.4%
Louisiana Russell B. Long Democratic 1948 (Special)
1950
1956
1962
1968
Incumbent re-elected. Russell B. Long (Democratic)
Unopposed
Maryland Charles Mathias, Jr. Republican 1968 Incumbent re-elected. Charles Mathias, Jr. (Republican) 57.3%
Barbara Mikulski (Democratic) 42.7%
Missouri Thomas Eagleton Democratic 1968 Incumbent re-elected. Thomas Eagleton (Democratic) 60.1%
Thomas B. Curtis (Republican) 39.3%
Cliff Talmage (Independent) 0.6%
Nevada Alan Bible Democratic 1954 (Special)
1956
1962
1968
Incumbent retired.
New senator elected.
Republican gain.
Paul Laxalt (Republican) 47.0%
Harry Reid (Democratic) 46.6%
New Hampshire Norris Cotton Republican 1954 (Special)
1956
1962
1968
Incumbent retired.
New senator elected.
Republican hold.
Incumbent resigned December 31, 1974.
Winner was appointed December 31, 1974.
Election was contested and later voided.
Louis C. Wyman (Republican) 49.7%
John A. Durkin (Democratic) 49.7%
New York Jacob K. Javits Republican 1956
1962
1968
Incumbent re-elected. Jacob K. Javits (Republican) 45.3%
Ramsey Clark (Democratic) 38.2%
Barbara A. Keating (Conservative) 15.9%
Rebecca Finch (Socialist Workers Party) 0.1%
William F Dowling Jr (Courage) 0.1%
Robert E Massi (Socialist Labor) 0.08%
Mildred Edelman (Communist) 0.08%
Elijah Boyd Jr (Labor) 0.07%
North Carolina Sam Ervin Democratic 1954 (Special)
1954 (Appointed)
1956
1962
1968
Incumbent retired.
New senator elected.
Democratic hold.
Robert Burren Morgan (Democratic) 62.1%
William E. Stevens (Republican) 37.0%
North Dakota Milton Young Republican 1945 (Appointed)
1946 (Special)
1950
1956
1962
1968
Incumbent re-elected. Milton Young (Republican) 48.4%
William L. Guy (Democratic) 48.3%
Ohio Howard Metzenbaum Democratic 1974 (Appointed) Incumbent lost renomination.
New senator elected.
Democratic hold.
Incumbent resigned December 23, 1974.
Winner was appointed December 24, 1974.
John Glenn (Democratic) 64.6%
Ralph J. Perk (Republican) 30.7%
Oklahoma Henry Bellmon Republican 1968 Incumbent re-elected. Henry Bellmon (Republican) 49.4%
Ed Edmondson (Democratic) 48.9%
Oregon Bob Packwood Republican 1968 Incumbent re-elected. Bob Packwood (Republican) 54.9%
Betty Roberts (Democratic) 44.2%
Pennsylvania Richard Schweiker Republican 1968 Incumbent re-elected. Richard Schweiker (Republican) 53.0%
Peter F. Flaherty (Democratic) 45.9%
George W. Shankey (Constitution) 1.1%
South Carolina Ernest Hollings Democratic 1966 (Special)
1968
Incumbent re-elected. Ernest Hollings (Democratic) 69.5%
Gwenyfred Bush (Republican) 28.6%
South Dakota George McGovern Democratic 1962
1968
Incumbent re-elected. George McGovern (Democratic) 53.0%
Leo K. Thorsness (Republican) 47.0%
Utah Wallace F. Bennett Republican 1950
1956
1962
1968
Incumbent retired.
New senator elected.
Republican hold.
Jake Garn (Republican) 50.0%
Wayne Owens (Democratic) 44.1%
Vermont George Aiken Republican 1940 (Special)
1944
1950
1956
1962
1968
Incumbent retired.
New senator elected.
Democratic gain.
Patrick Leahy (Democratic) 49.5%
Richard W. Mallary (Republican) 46.4%
Washington Warren Magnuson Democratic 1944
1944 (Appointed)
1950
1956
1962
1968
Incumbent re-elected. Warren G. Magnuson (Democratic) 60.7%
Jack Metcalf (Republican) 36.1%
Gene Goosman (American Independent) 2%
Clare Fraenzl (Socialist Workers) 0.8%
Pat Ruckert (U.S. Labor) 0.4%
Wisconsin Gaylord Nelson Democratic 1962
1968
Incumbent re-elected. Gaylord Nelson (Democratic) 61.8%
Tom Petri (Republican) 35.8%

Special election during the 95th Congress

In this special election, the winner was elected after January 3, 1975.

State Incumbent Results Candidates
Senator Party Electoral history
New Hampshire
(Class 3)
Norris Cotton Republican 1954 (Special)
1956
1962
1968
1974 (Retired)
1975 (Appointed)
Interim appointee retired.
New senator elected September 16, 1975.
Democratic gain.
John A. Durkin (Democratic) 53.6%
Louis C. Wyman (Republican) 43.04%
Carmen C. Chimento (American Independent) 3.4%

Arizona

Barry Goldwater photo1962.jpg
Barry Goldwater photo1962.jpg
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1974 Arizona.png
1974 Arizona.png

Incumbent Republican Barry Goldwater decided to run for reelection to a second consecutive term, after returning to the U.S. Senate in 1968 following his failed Presidential run in 1964 against Lyndon B. Johnson. Goldwater defeated Democratic Party nominee philanthropist Jonathan Marshall in the general election.

Democratic primary results[4]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jonathan Marshall, philanthropist 79,225 53.55%
Democratic George Oglesby, attorney 36,262 24.51%
Democratic William Mathews Feighan 32,449 21.93%
Total votes 147,936 100.00
United States Senate election in Arizona, 1974[5]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Barry Goldwater 320,396 58.26%
Democratic Jonathan Marshall 229,523 41.74%
Majority 90,873 16.52%
Turnout 549,919
Republican gain from Democratic Swing

Florida

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Richardbernardstone.jpg
Jack Eckerd.jpg
Jack Eckerd.jpg
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Incumbent Republican Edward Gurney declined to seek a second term after being indicted for taking bribes in return for his influence with the Federal Housing Administration.

The primary for the Republican nomination pitted Eckerd drug store owner Jack Eckerd against Florida Public Service Commissioner Paula Hawkins. Eckerd won handily, receiving approximately 67.5% of the vote.

Republican primary results
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Jack Eckerd 186,897 67.49%
Republican Paula Hawkins 90,049 32.52%
Total votes 276,946 100.00%

The Democratic primary, however, was a crowded field with eleven candidates vying for the nomination. Because no candidate received a majority of the votes, U.S. Representative Bill Gunter and Secretary of State of Florida Richard Stone advanced to a run-off election. Stone won by a small margin of 1.68%.

Democratic primary results
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Richard Stone 236,185 29.80%
Democratic Bill Gunter 157,301 19.85%
Democratic Richard A. Pettigrew 146,728 18.51%
Democratic Mallory Horne 90,684 11.44%
Democratic Glenn W. Turner 51,326 6.48%
Democratic George Balmer 24,408 3.08%
Democratic Burton Young 23,199 2.93%
Democratic Bob Brewster 19,913 2.51%
Democratic David B. Higginbottom 17,401 1.64%
Democratic Duaine E. Macon 14,961 1.89%
Total votes 782,106 100.00%
Democratic primary runoff results
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Richard Stone 321,683 50.84%
Democratic Bill Gunter 311,044 49.16%
Total votes 632,727 100.00%

Thus, Eckerd and Stone faced off in the general election. John Grady, a family physician and member of George Wallace's American Independent Party, performed exceptionally well for a third party candidate. Grady may have split the conservative vote, allowing for Stone to win. On election day, Stone received 43.38% of the vote, Eckerd garnered 40.91% of the vote, and Grady acquired 15.7% of the vote.

General election results
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Richard Stone 781,031 43.38%
Republican Jack Eckerd 736,674 40.91%
American Independent John Grady 282,659 15.7%
Independent Jim Fair 117 0.01%
Independent Henry J. Matthew 35 0.00%
Independent Hortense L. Arvan 13 0.00%
Independent Timothy L. "Tim" Adams 10 0.00%
Majority 44,357 3.32%
Voter turnout  %
Democratic gain from Republican

Maryland

Charlesmathiasjr.jpg
Charlesmathiasjr.jpg
Barbara Mikulski.jpg
Barbara Mikulski.jpg

Incumbent Republican Charles Mathias won re-election to a second term. As a Republican representing heavily-Democratic Maryland, Mathias faced a potentially difficult re-election bid for the 1974 election. State Democrats nominated Barbara Mikulski, then a Baltimore City Councilwoman who was well-known to residents in her city as a social activist, but with limited name recognition in the rest of the state.[6] Mathias was renominated by Republicans, fending off a primary election challenge from conservative doctor Ross Pierpont. Pierpont was never a substantial threat to Mathias, whose lack of competition was due in part to fallout from the Watergate scandal.[7][8]

As an advocate for campaign finance reform, Mathias refused to accept any contribution over $100 to "avoid the curse of big money that has led to so much trouble in the last year".[9] However, he still managed to raise over $250,000, nearly five times Mikulski's total. Ideologically, Mikulski and Mathias agreed on many issues, such as closing tax loopholes and easing taxes on the middle class. On two issues, however, Mathias argued to reform Congress and the U.S. tax system to address inflation and corporate price fixing, contrary to Mikulski.[6] In retrospect, The Washington Post felt the election was "an intelligent discussion of state, national, and foreign affairs by two smart, well-informed people".[10]

United States Senate election in Maryland, 1974[11]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Charles McC. Mathias, Jr. (Incumbent) 503,223 57.3
Democratic Barbara A. Mikulski 374,663 42.7
Invalid or blank votes
Total votes 877,886 100.00
Voter turnout  %
Republican hold

Nevada

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PaulLaxalt.JPG
Harry Reid official portrait.jpg
Harry Reid official portrait.jpg
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Incumbent Democrat Alan Bible decided to retire instead of seeking a fourth full term. Republican nominee Paul Laxalt won the open seat.

Former Governor Paul Laxalt won by less than 700 votes, becoming one of the few bright spots in a bad year for Republicans. He beat Lieutenant Governor Harry Reid. Reid would succeed Laxalt twelve years later.

General election results[12]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Paul Laxalt 79,605 46.97% +1.73%
Democratic Harry Reid 78,981 46.60% -8.16%
Independent American (Nev.) Jack C. Doyle 10,887 6.42%
Majority 624 0.37% -9.15%
Turnout 169,473
Republican gain from Democratic

New Hampshire

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WymanLouis(R-NH).jpg
John A. Durkin.jpg
John A. Durkin.jpg

The New Hampshire election resulted in the longest contested election for the U.S. Congress in United States history.

In 1973, then-incumbent Senator Norris Cotton announced he would not seek re-election. Republican strategists admitted that it would be tough for their party to hold on to the seat.[13]

The campaign of 1974 pitted Democrat John A. Durkin, who had served as New Hampshire's Insurance Commissioner and as Attorney General, against Republican Louis C. Wyman, a conservative, widely known member of the United States House of Representatives from New Hampshire's 1st congressional district. As Wyman was the more experienced politician, he was predicted by many to win handily.[14]

On election day, Wyman won with a margin of just 355 votes. Durkin immediately demanded a recount, which, completed November 27, 1974, declared Durkin the winner by a margin of 2 votes. Republican Governor Meldrim Thomson, Jr. awarded Durkin a provisional certificate of election.

New Hampshire United States Senate Election, 1974: Second Recount
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Louis Wyman 110,926 49.6618%
Democratic John A. Durkin 110,924 49.6609%
American Independent Carmen C. Chimento 1,513 0.68%
Plurality 2 0.0009%
Turnout 223,363

Wyman promptly appealed to the New Hampshire State Ballot Law Commission. Durkin tried to defeat the appeal in the New Hampshire courts. The state ballot commission conducted its own partial recount and announced on December 24, 1974, that Wyman had won by just two votes. Governor Thomson rescinded Durkin’s certificate, and awarded a new credential to Wyman.

Senator Cotton resigned December 31, 1974, and Governor Thomson appointed Wyman to fill the remainder of the term, which would expire January 3, 1975.

The election contest was not settled, however, and eventually a new election would be called, see below.

New Hampshire (Special)

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John A. Durkin.jpg
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WymanLouis(R-NH).jpg

As a last option to the disputed election above, Durkin petitioned the Senate, which had a 60-vote Democratic majority, to review the case, based on the Constitutional provision that each house of Congress is the final arbiter of elections to that body.

On January 13, 1975, the day before the new Congress convened, the Senate Rules Committee tried unsuccessfully to resolve the matter. Composed of five Democrats and three Republicans, the Rules Committee deadlocked 4–4 on a proposal to seat Wyman pending further review. Democrat James Allen voted with the Republicans on grounds that Wyman had presented proper credentials.

The full Senate took up the case on January 14, with Wyman and Durkin seated at separate tables at the rear of the chamber. Soon, the matter was returned to the Rules Committee, which created a special staff panel to examine 3,500 questionable ballots that had been shipped to Washington. Following this review, the Rules Committee sent a report of 35 disputed points in the election to the full Senate, which spent the next six weeks debating the issue, but resolved only one of the 35 points in dispute. Republicans successfully filibustered the seating of Durkin.[14]

Facing deadlock with the August recess approaching, The Washington Post ran an editorial on July 28 charging that it would be "incredible" if the Senate were to "go on vacation for a month without settling the New Hampshire Senate election case."[15] The Post suggested that Wyman and Durkin themselves should try to reach some agreement to settle the matter. Following up on the suggestion, Louis Wyman wrote to Durkin that day, urging him to support a new, special election. Durkin initially refused, but then on July 29, reversed his earlier position, and announced to a New Hampshire television audience his intention to agree to the new election.[16] The next morning, July 30, he reported this change to the Democratic leadership, thus relieving the Senate from further deliberations on the topic.

Later that same day, the Senate voted 71–21 to declare the seat vacant as of August 8. Governor Thomson this time appointed former Senator Norris Cotton to hold the seat temporarily. New Hampshire then arranged to hold a special election.

The special election was held on September 16, 1975. Widespread attention in the media resulted in a record-breaking turnout, which gave the election to Durkin by a 27,000-vote margin.[14][17]

United States Senate Special Election in New Hampshire, 1975
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic John A. Durkin 140,778 53.62%
Republican Louis Wyman (Disputed incumbent) 113,007 43.04%
American Independent Carmen C. Chimento 8,787 3.35%
Majority 27,771 10.58%
Turnout 262,572
Democratic gain from Republican

North Carolina

Robert Burren Morgan.jpg
Robert Burren Morgan.jpg
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Incumbent Democrat Sam Ervin chose to retire. The general election was fought between the Democratic nominee Robert Morgan and the Republican nominee William Stevens.

Democratic primary[18]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Robert Morgan 294,986 50.40%
Democratic Nick Galifianakis 189,815 32.43%
Democratic Henry Wilson 67,247 11.49%
Democratic James Johnson 6,138 1.05%
Democratic Others 27,140 4.64%
Voter turnout  %
Republican primary [18]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican William Stevens 62,419 65.12%
Republican Wood Hall Young 26,918 28.08%
Republican B. E. Sweatt 6,520 6.80%
Voter turnout  %
General election[18]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Robert Morgan 633,647 61.56% +1.00%
Republican William Stevens 386,720 37.57% -1.87%
Other 8,974 0.87% N/A
Turnout 1,029,341

North Dakota

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Milton Young.jpg
William L. Guy North Dakota Governor 1968.jpg
William L. Guy North Dakota Governor 1968.jpg

Incumbent Republican Milton Young was re-elected to his sixth term, defeating North Dakota Democratic-NPL Party candidate William L. Guy, a former Governor of North Dakota.[12]

Only Young filed as a Republican, and the endorsed Democratic candidate was William L. Guy of Bismarck, North Dakota, who had served as Governor of the state from 1961 to 1973; and had presumably left the office to seek the senate seat. Young and Guy won the primary elections for their respective parties. Guy, who was very popular as governor throughout the state, and Young, who had a high approval rating as senator for the state, created the closest ever election for one of North Dakota's senate seats. Young won the election by only 177 votes, and Guy retired from politics.

Two independent candidates, James R. Jungroth and Kenneth C. Gardner, also filed before the deadline. Jungroth's platform was based on his opposition to strip mining the state's coal reserves.[19] Gardner would later run for the state's other seat in 1988 against then incumbent Quentin Burdick.

1974 United States Senate election, North Dakota
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Milton R. Young 114,852 48.45%
Democratic William L. Guy 114,675 48.37%
Independent James R. Jungroth 6,679 2.82%
Independent Kenneth C. Gardiner 853 0.36%
Majority 177 0.07%
Turnout 237,059

Ohio

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John Glenn 97th Congress 1981.jpg
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Perk-stokes.jpg

Incumbent Democrat Howard Metzenbaum was running for re-election his first full term after he was appointed in 1970 by Ohio governor John J. Gilligan to fill out the Senate term of William B. Saxbe, who had resigned to become United States Attorney General. Metzenbaum lost the primary election to retired astronaut John Glenn, who went on to win the general election and win every county in the state over Republican Ralph Perk, Mayor of Cleveland

OH United States Senate election, 1974[20]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic John Glenn 1,930,670 64.6%
Republican Ralph Perk 918,133 30.7%
Independent Kathleen G. Harroff 76,882 2.6%
Independent Richard B. Kay 61,921 2.1%
Independent John O'Neill 257 0.0%
Independent Ronald E. Girkins 88 0.0%

Oklahoma

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BellmonHL.jpg
Ed Edmondson.jpg
Ed Edmondson.jpg

Incumbent Republican Henry Bellmon narrowly won re-election to a second term, beating Representative Ed Edmondson by nearly 4,000 votes.

General election results[21]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Henry Bellmon 390,997 49.4%
Democratic Ed Edmondson 387,162 48.9%
Independent Paul E. Trent 13,650 1.7%

Oregon

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Incumbent Republican Bob Packwood won re-election to a second term. Betty Roberts was chosen to replace former U.S. Senator Wayne Morse, who won the Democratic primary but died before the general election.[22][23]

Wayne Morse.jpg
Wayne Morse won the Democratic primary, but died prior to the general election.

The Democratic primaries were held on May 28, 1974. Incumbent Senator Bob Packwood was running for re-election after his upset victory against popular incumbent Democrat Wayne Morse in 1968 made him the youngest member of the Senate.[24]

In the Democratic primary, former Senator Morse, trying to win back the seat he had for 24 years before losing to Packwood six years earlier, faced Oregon State Senate President Jason Boe and several other candidates for a chance to take back his Senate seat.[25] Boe, who was 45, made Morse's age, 73, an issue in the race while Morse said his experience in the Senate made him a stronger candidate.[26] Boe called for a series of debates around the state, but Morse refused. He went on to defeat Boe 49% to 39%, and planned to use the same strategy in the general election against Packwood, whose narrow victory over Morse 6 years earlier was attributed to Packwood's superior performance at a debate in Portland late in the campaign.[22]

Democratic primary for the United States Senate from Oregon, 1974[27]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Wayne Morse 155,729 48.98%
Democratic Jason Boe 125,055 39.33%
Democratic Robert T. Daly 21,881 6.88%
Democratic Robert E. O'Connor 14,984 4.71%
Democratic (Scattering) 319 0.10%
Total votes 396,204 100.00%

In July, Morse was hospitalized in Portland with what was originally described as a serious urinary tract infection. His condition deteriorated and he died on July 22.[23] The death was originally reported to have been caused by kidney failure, but it was later revealed that Morse died of leukemia; Boe apparently knew of the diagnosis during the campaign but did not make it a campaign issue.[28]

The Oregon Democratic State Central Committee met on August 11, two days after Richard Nixon resigned the Presidency. They chose State Senator Betty Roberts over Boe to replace Morse as the Democratic nominee.[29] Roberts, an Oregon State Senator, had run for the Democratic nomination for Governor that year, but lost in the May primary to eventual general election winner Robert W. Straub.[29]

Outgoing Oregon governor Tom McCall, who had decided not to run in 1968, had pledged to Packwood a year earlier that he would not challenge him in 1974.[30] But as his term as governor ended, McCall began reconsidering his decision, believing he would bring more integrity to the job. In March 1974, at a dinner party held at Packwood's Washington D.C. home in McCall's honor, McCall informed Packwood that he would challenge him.[30] The news of McCall's change of plans soon reached the media. Eventually, McCall decided that he had little chance against Packwood, who had similar positions to his own and had a reputation for ruthless campaigning that McCall did not share.[30][31] McCall did not run, and Packwood was unopposed in the Republican primary.[25]

Strong Democratic gains were predicted, giving Roberts a good chance at an upset. In addition, the Senate had no female members and Roberts was one of three women (along with Barbara Mikulski in Maryland and Gwenyfred Bush in South Carolina) seeking a Senate seat.[32] But on the issues, Packwood and Roberts shared many positions, such as on abortion, military spending, and the environment.[33] Moreover, Packwood had distanced himself from Watergate, calling for Nixon's impeachment and denouncing Gerald Ford's pardon of Nixon.[33][34] Roberts was also at a financial disadvantage, having entered the race late and facing debt from her failed gubernatorial run; Packwood was able to use money he had raised for a primary challenge that never materialized, and led in most polls by a double-digit margin.[33]

Roberts lost the election to Packwood 54% to 44%.[35] Packwood was the only Oregon Republican up for re-election to keep his seat: Democrats won every other available seat. In the Governor's race, Bob Straub, who beat Roberts in the Democratic primary, defeated Vic Atiyeh to become the first Democrat elected governor since 1956; in the U. S. House of Representatives races, Les AuCoin won an open seat in the 1st district and in the 4th district, Jim Weaver upset incumbent John Dellenback.[36]

After the election, Roberts, whose criticism of Packwood's ethics was a theme in her campaign, considered filing a lawsuit against Packwood for misrepresenting her positions on gun control, abortion, and Social Security in campaign advertisements, but later dropped the idea.[37]

United States Senate election in Oregon, 1974[38]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Bob Packwood 420,984 54.93%
Democratic Betty Roberts 338,591 44.18%
Write-In Jason Boe 5,072 0.66%
Write-In Misc. 1,767 0.23%
Total votes 766,414 100.00%
Republican hold

Pennsylvania

RichardSchweiker.jpg
RichardSchweiker.jpg
No image.svg
No image.svg
Pennsylvania Senatorial Election Results by County, 1974.svg
Pennsylvania Senatorial Election Results by County, 1974.svg

Incumbent Republican Richard Schweiker won re-election, defeating Democratic nominee Peter F. Flaherty, Mayor of Pittsburgh.

In the general election campaign, Schweiker faced popular Pittsburgh mayor Peter Flaherty. Both candidates, as highlighted by a New York Times article, "[took] firm stands against inflation, recession, big spending by the Federal Government and abortion on demand."[39] Schweiker, who was endorsed by the AFL–CIO, distanced himself from the Richard Nixon administration, specifically the Watergate scandal, by emphasizing his early calls for Nixon's resignation and the fact that he was on Nixon's "enemies list."[39]

In the end, Schweiker won re-election with 53% of the popular vote, with Flaherty winning 45.9%. Schweiker carried 53 of Pennsylvania's counties, a decrease from the 59 counties he carried in the 1968 election. Flaherty had a strong showing in Allegheny County, which contains his home town of Pittsburgh, which Schweiker had won in 1968. The final election results represented a political divide between the eastern and western portions of the state, Schweiker in the east and Flaherty in the west, with the exception of Flaherty's slim 4,491 vote victory in Philadelphia.[39]

Pennsylvania United States Senate Election, 1974[12]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Richard Schweiker (Incumbent) '1,843,317' '53.00%'
Democratic Peter F. Flaherty 1,596,121 45.89%
Constitution George W. Shankey 38,004 1.09%
N/A Other 370 0.01%
Majority 247,196 7.11%
Turnout 3,477,812
Republican hold Swing

South Carolina

FritzHollings.jpg
FritzHollings.jpg
No image.svg
No image.svg

The 1974 South Carolina United States Senate election was held on November 5, 1974 to select the U.S. Senator from the state of South Carolina. Incumbent Democratic Senator Fritz Hollings easily defeated Republican challenger Gwen Bush to win his second full term. Both Hollings and Bush faced no opposition in their party's primaries which allowed both candidates to concentrate solely on the general election. The Watergate scandal caused the Republicans to perform poorly nationwide in 1974 and Gwen Bush was little more than a sacrificial lamb. The main focus of the voters in South Carolina was on the competitive gubernatorial contest and Hollings easily cruised to a comfortable re-election.

General election results

South Carolina U.S. Senate Election, 1974
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Fritz Hollings 355,107 69.4% +7.5%
Republican Gwen Bush 146,649 28.7% -9.4%
Independent Harold Hough 9,624 1.9% +1.9%
Majority 208,458 40.7% +16.9%
Turnout 511,380 51.3% -25.2%
Democratic hold

Vermont

Patrick Leahy 1979 congressional photo.jpg
Patrick Leahy 1979 congressional photo.jpg
Richard W. Mallary.jpg
Richard W. Mallary.jpg

Incumbent Republican George Aiken did not run for re-election to another term in the United States Senate. Democratic candidate, attorney and prosecutor Patrick Leahy defeated the Republican candidate, congressman Richard W. Mallary to succeed him.

Republican primary results[40]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Richard W. Mallary 27,221 59.1%
Republican Charles R. Ross 16,479 35.8%
Republican T. Serse Ambrosini 2,265 4.9%
Republican Other 61 0.1%
Total votes 46,026 100.0%
Democratic primary results[40]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Patrick Leahy 19,801 83.9%
Democratic Nathaniel Frothingham 3,703 15.7%
Democratic Other 97 0.4%
Total votes 23,601 100.0%
United States Senate election in Vermont, 1974[41]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Patrick Leahy 70,629 49.47%
Republican Richard W. Mallary 66,223 46.38%
Liberty Union Bernie Sanders 5,901 4.13%
N/A Other 19 0.0%
Total votes 142,772 100.0%

Wisconsin

GaylordNelson.jpg
GaylordNelson.jpg
Tommypetri.jpeg
Tommypetri.jpeg

Incumbent Democrat Gaylord Nelson won re-election to a third term over Tom Petri, State Senator since 1973.

General election results
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Gaylord Nelson 740,700 61.8%
Republican Tom Petri 429,327 35.8%
American Gerald L. McFarren 24,003 2.0%
Lowering the Property Tax Roman Blenski 5,396 0.6%

See also

Notes

  1. ^ a b There was also a special election September 16, 1975.
  2. ^ Harry F. Byrd Jr. (VA) was an Independent who caucused with the Democrats. In some circles he is called an "Independent Democrat," but his actual registration was listed as "Independent." See, e.g., United States Congress. "Harry Flood Byrd, Jr. (id: B001209)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.
  3. ^ James M. Naughton (November 6, 1974). "Senate and House Margins Are Substantially Enlarged". New York Times. Retrieved October 31, 2014.
  4. ^ http://www.ourcampaigns.com/RaceDetail.html?RaceID=230915
  5. ^ http://www.ourcampaigns.com/RaceDetail.html?RaceID=3294
  6. ^ a b Barker, Karlyn (November 6, 1974). "Mathias Is Elected To a Second Term". The Washington Post. p. A12.
  7. ^ Watson, Douglas (August 15, 1974). "Mathias Purge Threat Ends: White House Scandals Boost Senator's Re-election Bid". The Washington Post. p. C1.
  8. ^ Barker, Karlyn (September 11, 1974). "Mathias Wins GOP Md. Race". The Washington Post. p. A24.
  9. ^ Richards, Bill (February 3, 1974). "Sen. Mathias Re-Election Drive Opens". The Washington Post. p. B1.
  10. ^ "U.S. Senate Choice in Maryland". The Washington Post. October 22, 1980. p. A22.
  11. ^ "1974 Senatorial General Election Results - Maryland".
  12. ^ a b c "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 4, 1974 [sic]" (PDF). Office of the Clerk of the U.S. House. Retrieved July 8, 2014.
  13. ^ Lydon, Christopher (December 17, 1973). "Republican Strategists See Major 1974 Election Losses for G.O.P.; Most Incredible'". The New York Times.
  14. ^ a b c "Message from New Hampshire". Time. September 29, 1975.
  15. ^ Glass, Andrew (July 29, 2015). "Closest election in Senate annals prompts 'do-over'". Politico.
  16. ^ Wermiel, Stephen (July 30, 1975). "Durkin reverses, asks new N.H. vote"Paid subscription required. The Boston Globe.
  17. ^ "Toledo Blade - Google News Archive Search". Retrieved February 18, 2017.
  18. ^ a b c "North Carolina DataNet #46" (PDF). University of North Carolina. April 2008. Retrieved 2009-06-12.
  19. ^ Our Campaigns - Candidate - James R. Jungroth
  20. ^ http://www.ourcampaigns.com/RaceDetail.html?RaceID=6362
  21. ^ http://www.ourcampaigns.com/RaceDetail.html?RaceID=6352
  22. ^ a b "No debate". The Register-Guard. April 9, 1974. Archived from the original on January 24, 2013. Retrieved January 29, 2010.
  23. ^ a b "Death claims ex-Sen. Wayne Morse". The Bulletin (Bend). July 22, 1974. Retrieved January 29, 2010.
  24. ^ "From political obscurity, Packwood defeated veteran". The Bulletin (Bend). November 12, 1974. Retrieved February 1, 2010.
  25. ^ a b "Packwood, unopposed, spent most in Senate primary". The Bulletin (Bend). June 28, 1974. Retrieved January 29, 2010.
  26. ^ Willis, Henny (May 26, 1974). "Four want to battle Packwood". The Register-Guard. Archived from the original on January 25, 2013. Retrieved January 29, 2010.
  27. ^ "Oregon US Senate Democratic Primary Race, May 28, 1974". ourcampaigns.com. Retrieved January 29, 2010.
  28. ^ "Leukemia claimed Wayne Morse". The Bulletin (Bend). May 28, 1975. Retrieved January 29, 2010.
  29. ^ a b "State Sen. Betty Roberts chosen to oppose Packwood". Tri City Herald. August 12, 1974. Retrieved January 29, 2010.
  30. ^ a b c Walth, Brent (November 24, 1994). "McCall wanted Senate seat, despite pledge to Packwood". The Register-Guard. Retrieved February 1, 2010.
  31. ^ "He won't run for Senate, says McCall". Tri City Herald. March 14, 1974. Retrieved February 1, 2010.
  32. ^ "All-male ballots may soon become unusual". The Tuscaloosa News. September 19, 1974. Retrieved February 1, 2010.
  33. ^ a b c Aarons, Leroy F. (October 24, 1974). "Packwood faces strong challenge from a woman". St. Petersburg Times. Retrieved February 1, 2010.
  34. ^ "Packwood believes many Republicans want Nixon to quit". The Bulletin (Bend). March 27, 1974. Retrieved February 1, 2010.
  35. ^ Robinson, Sue (November 6, 1974). "Packwood survives dark night". The Register-Guard. Retrieved January 29, 2010.
  36. ^ Willis, Henny (November 6, 1974). "Weaver wins stunning upset". The Register-Guard. Retrieved February 2, 2010.
  37. ^ "Election suit idea dropped by Roberts". The Register-Guard. November 16, 1974. Retrieved January 29, 2010.
  38. ^ "Oregon US Senate Race, Nov 5, 1974". ourcampaigns.com. Retrieved January 29, 2010.
  39. ^ a b c Sundquist, Renée M. Lamis ; with a foreword by James L. (2009). The realignment of Pennsylvania politics since 1960 : two-party competition in a battleground state. University Park, Pa.: Pennsylvania State University Press. pp. 100–102. ISBN 027103419X.
  40. ^ a b "Primary Election Results" (PDF). Office of the Vermont Secretary of State. Retrieved June 17, 2015.
  41. ^ "General Election Results - U.S. Senator - 1914-2014" (PDF). Office of the Vermont Secretary of State. Retrieved June 17, 2015.

References

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