Unpredictable Race for Ex-Rep. Chaffetz's Seat in Utah

Live Election Results: Republican Primary in Utah's Third Congressional District

Tanner Ainge, left, addresses the crowd as John Curtis and Joe Buchman listen during a debate in Provo, Utah, for candidates vying for the House seat vacated by Republican Jason Chaffetz.

Curtis is a former Democrat who was the most moderate of the Republican candidates running in Utah's 3rd Congressional District.

Conservative Christopher Herrod, with the backing of Sens.

Out-of-state organizations and political action committees have spent about $900,000 in Utah's race - on top of about $600,000 in campaign contributions collected by the three Republicans running for Utah's 3rd Congressional District. Curtis held a commanding lead in early published polls, but the race tightened after the spate of outside spending.

The Provo Mayor relied on voter signatures to secure a place on the Republican primary ballot.

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Those voters were notified of the flub, Thomas said, and have the option of appearing in person at a voting center on Tuesday to register as Republicans. But the mail ballots in question were segregated and were set to be counted only after all other ballots were counted.

John Curtis pulled off the win despite being dogged by attack ads from deep-pocketed outside groups in a race whose three candidates were emblematic of the divisions roiling the GOP under President Donald Trump. His father Danny was a star basketball player at Brigham Young University (located in the district) and played 14 seasons in the NBA. The other two contenders, former state Rep. Chris Herrod and businessman Tanner Ainge, trailed with 31 percent and 29 percent, respectively. The 33-year-old is making his first run for public office with the help of a super PAC, Conservative Utah, that received the bulk of its $290,000 war chest from his mother, Michelle Toolson Ainge.

Despite the outside money funding ads attacking Curtis, he won the primary. He has raised more than $1 million and has the strong endorsement of Republican Gov. Gary Herbert.

"I think he acknowledges that being Republican with an "R" by your name does not automatically make you a keeper of all the answers", she said.

Chaffetz, a five-term Republican, carved out a reputation for using the House Oversight committee he chaired to run aggressive investigations of Hillary Clinton before the 2016 presidential elections.

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