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Social distancing restrictions from the COVID-19 pandemic likely limited the number of candidates able to get signatures required to make the primary ballot.

But the pandemic apparently had little impact on the Aug. 4 primary.  

On Aug. 14, the Maricopa County Elections Department finalized the federal and state primary elections held 10 days earlier.

According to the county, “a historic primary turnout” had 860,704 voters participating. That was nearly 25% more than the 699,636 ballots in the 2018 primary. (In the 2016 primary,  555,844 ballots were turned in to the county.)

The ballots returned represent 35% of the 2.4 million registered voters.

Voters were able to mail or drop off ballots or vote in person, with 99 polling places set up to provide social distancing.

With many races having little competition, there were no upsets, with incumbents cruising to the November general election.

Congressional races

In the 3rd Congressional District, which includes Buckeye and Avondale, only incumbent Raúl Grijalva filed as a Democrat candidate. Daniel Wood was the lone Republican to make the ballot in the 3rd Congressional District, though Richard Jolley is a write-in candidate.

Grijalva received 16,827 votes. Wood received 12,599  votes. They will square off in November.

 The 7th Congressional District, which includes parts of Tolleson and Glendale, had just three candidates file: incumbent Ruben Gallego, a Democrat, and Republicans Joshua Barnett of Phoenix and Nina Becker of Sun City. Becker has withdrawn from the race.

In this overwhelmingly Democrat district, Gallego received 56,108 votes. Barnett received 15,245 votes. They will battle in November.

The Aug. 4 primary election had three Democrat candidates for the 8th Congressional District.

 Rep. Debbie Lesko was the only Republican to file in District 8, which includes parts of Goodyear, Litchfield Park, Waddell, Glendale and Peoria. Lesko received 105,758 votes. 

There were three Democrats on the primary ballot for the 8th Congressional District: Michael Muscato of Peoria, Bob Musselwhite of Litchfield Park and Bob Olsen of Surprise.

Kyle Martin of Glendale filed as a write-in candidate.

Muscato, who received  35,923 votes, will attempt to unseat Lesko in the November election. Olsen received 20,547 votes and Musselwhite received 9,578 votes. 

State races

In state District 4, which includes Buckeye and Goodyear, incumbents Geraldine “Gerae” Peten and Charlene Fernandez were the only two Democrats to file for the two House of Representatives seats. Joel John filed as a Republican candidate.

Peten received 3,476 votes. Fernandez received 4,245 votes. John received 5,523 votes. All three will be on the November ballot, fighting for the two positions.

Incumbent Sen. Lisa Otondo of Yuma was the lone Democrat to file for the District 4 state Senate seat and Travis Angry of Goodyear the lone Republican to file.

Otondo received 4,927 votes. Angry received 5,469 votes, setting up a November battle.

Arizona District 13 includes Buckeye, Litchfield Park and other parts of the West Valley.

Incumbent Sine Kerr, the lone Republican to file, received 20,934 votes for District 13 senator.

Three Republicans filed as District 13 representatives. Incumbents Tim Dunn, with 14,291 votes, and Joanne Osborne, with 11,688 votes, move on to the November ballot—with Osborne narrowly edging challenger Steve Montenegro, who received 11,313 votes.

Mariana Sandoval was the lone Democrat on the primary ballot for District 13. She received 12,617 votes.

In Avondale-Tolleson District 19,  incumbent Sen. Lupe Contreras was the only Democrat to file; Steven Robinson of Phoenix is a write-in Republican candidate. 

Contreras received 13,156 votes.

Incumbents Diego Espinoza, with 9,167 votes, and Lorenzo Sierra, with 8,042 votes, moved past challenger Leezah Sun, who received 4,836 votes, in the Democrat primary for District 19 Arizona House of Representatives. There were no Republican candidates in District 19.

Arizona Legislative District 29 includes part of Glendale, Litchfield Park and Maryvale. The primary featured all of the incumbents: Sen. Martín Quezada and representatives Richard C. Andrade and Cesar Chavez.

Quezada, who lives in Glendale, had no competition on the Democrat ballot. John Wilson of Phoenix was the lone Republican candidate on the District 29 Senate ballot.

Quezada received 12,053 votes and in November will face Wilson, who received 5,400 votes. 

Teddy Castro, a Litchfield Park resident, was the third Democrat on the District 29 House of Representatives ballot, joining Andrade and Chavez.

Andrade and Chavez move on to the November ballot, with Andrade receiving 5,868 votes and Chavez receiving 8,731. Castro received 4,684 votes.

Three Republicans were on the District 29 House of Representatives primary ballot: Billy Bragg, Helen Fokszanskyj-Conti and Alysia McMillan.

Bragg and FokszanskyJ-Conti move on to November, with Bragg receiving 3,826 votes and Fokszanskyj-Conti receiving 2,834 votes. McMillan receiving 2,206 votes.