Speed Reads

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What to watch for as 7 states head to the polls

Midterm primaries are back after a brief hiatus, this time in California, Iowa, Mississippi, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, and South Dakota. 

California appears relatively drama-free at the moment — Gov. Gavin Newsom (D), Democratic Sen. Alex Padilla, and Attorney General Rob Bonta (D) are all expected to fare well in their respective races, notes MSNBC's Steve Benen.  Meanwhile, in the state's 40th District, GOP rising star Rep. Young Kim is working to fend off a far-right challenger Greg Raths.

Over in Iowa, the Democratic Senate contest — the winner of which will take on longtime GOP lawmaker and "heavy favorite" Sen. Chuck Grassley — has been "surprisingly competitive," Benen writes.

And we'll see how GOP incumbent Rep. Steve Palazzo performs out of Mississippi as he fends off six other Republican candidates looking to snag his controversy-laden seat. Elsewhere, former Secretary of the Interior and Trump administration official Ryan Zinke is running for the House in Montana's newly-formed 1st District. 

In New Mexico, keep an eye on the Republican gubernatorial primary, the winner of which will take Democratic incumbent Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham. Meanwhile, we'll wait and see whether South Dakota's Trump-chastised Sen. John Thune (R) prevails in his primary.

And finally, in New Jersey, look out for Rob Menendez, son of Sen. Bob Menendez (D), who is running to replace the retiring Rep. Albio Sires (D) in the state's 8th District.