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Governorships


Democrats Flirting with Poorest Nevada Gubernatorial Showing Since the 1800s

Will Democrats eclipse even the 20 percent mark in 2014 with an unknown nominee taking on a popular GOP incumbent?

Do Democratic Hopes of Beating Kline End with a Dayton Loss?

A political party losing control of the governor's mansion has picked up a U.S. House seat in just three cycles in Minnesota history.

A Year in Smart Politics

A look back at which political institutions were covered the most at Smart Politics in 2013.

Kitzhaber Launches Bid to Become 2nd Longest-Serving Governor in History

If Oregon's Democratic governor is reelected in 2014 and serves out the entirety of his fourth term, he will trail only Iowa's Terry Branstad in all-time gubernatorial service since 1789.

Can Dayton Catch Lightning in a Bottle Twice?

Minnesotans have elected a Democratic governor with a Democrat in the White House in just four of 28 cycles since statehood - with none in their second term.

Return of the King: Charlie Crist and Ex-Governor Comebacks

More than half of ex-governors have been victorious in general election bids to return to their old seats since 1945.

Marty Seifert's Political Hiatus: Not a Problem

A new study suggests Seifert's three years out of government should not decrease his chances of winning the Republican gubernatorial nomination.

Plurality Blues: Governors on the Hot Seat

Since 1900, less than half of plurality-winning governors who were eligible for another term were reelected to their seat in the next cycle.

Tim Pawlenty: The Forgotten Man?

During Jeopardy's Teacher's Tournament, three educators could not name the capital city from where Tim Pawlenty governed for eight years.

Virginia's 'National Naysayer' Streak Ends While New Jersey's Continues

For the first time in 40 years, Virginians elected a governor from the party of the sitting president; New Jersey extends its streak to seven cycles - second longest in the country.

Sarvis Notches 3rd Best Libertarian Gubernatorial Mark in US History

The Virginian has the best showing in a gubernatorial race for a Libertarian in 11 years and easily records the third best showing in party history.

Sarvis Eyes Record Book in Virginia Gubernatorial Race

The third option in Virginia's top of the ballot race next week will likely rank among the Top 3 performances by a Libertarian gubernatorial nominee in party history.

Which States Have the Highest Rates of Female Gubernatorial Nominees?

Western states dominate the top of the list, with Alaska, Arizona, Hawaii, Nevada, Washington, and Wyoming all in the Top 10.

Tom Foley and GOP Eye Rare Split-Ticket Upset in Connecticut

For the first time in the Democratic vs Republican era, one party could sweep Connecticut's congressional seats while the other wins the governorship.

Can Alex Sink Pull a Jeb Bush?

Only one losing Florida gubernatorial candidate has come back to win the governorship in a subsequent campaign over the last 145+ years.

Will Oregon's 2014 Gubernatorial Race Be a Snoozer?

On the heels of the state's most competitive race for governor in more than a half-century, there is little buzz so far about Oregon's 2014 contest.

Chafee Just 4th Rhode Island Governor Since 1790 to Pass On 2nd Term

Facing a tough reelection bid in 2014, Lincoln Chafee throws up the white flag - a historical rarity among 1st term Rhode Island governors.

7 Gubernatorial Election Double-Takes

The Idaho GOP didn't give us Labrador vs. Otter in 2014, so Smart Politics takes a look back at some eyebrow raising surname matchups in gubernatorial electoral history.

Iowans Look to Split Vote Again in High Profile 2014 Contests

Hawkeye State voters have split their vote in gubernatorial and U.S. Senate races more than half the time since 1938.

Pennsylvania Democrats Hope to Reverse History in 2014 Gubernatorial Race

Pennsylvanians have elected a governor of the party of the sitting president in only 1 of the last 19 contests dating back to 1938; Democrats are 1-16 since 1860 with a Democrat in the White House.

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Political Crumbs

The Second Time Around

Former Republican Congressman Bob Beauprez became the seventh major party or second place gubernatorial candidate in Colorado to get a second chance at the office when he narrowly won his party's nomination last month. Two of the previous six candidates were successful. Democrat Alva Adams lost his first gubernatorial bid to Benjamin Eaton in 1884, but was victorious two years later against William Meyer. Democrat Charles Johnson placed third in 1894 behind Republican Albert McIntyre and Populist incumbent Governor David Waite but returned as the Fusion (Democrat/Populist) nominee in 1898 and defeated GOPer Henry Wolcott. Gubernatorial candidates who received a second chance but lost both general elections include Democrat Thomas Patterson (1888, 1914), Progressive Edward Costigan (1912, 1914), Republican Donald Brotzman (1954, 1956), and Republican David Strickland (1978, 1986).


How Are the Plurality Winners Doing?

Nearly 40 percent of plurality winners of U.S. Senate elections lose their seat in the next election cycle. Will that happen to any of the three such incumbents on the ballot in 2014? Recent polling suggests Democrats Al Franken of Minnesota, Mark Begich of Alaska, and Jeff Merkley of Oregon all currently have an advantage over their nominated/frontrunning GOP opponents, but each is flirting with plurality support once again. Franken led endorsed GOPer Mike McFadden 48 to 42 percent in a new SurveyUSA poll while the polling group showed Merkley with a 50 to 32 percent advantage over Monica Wehby. Begich led each of the three major GOP candidates in last month's PPP survey: 42 to 37 percent over Daniel Sullivan, 41 to 33 percent over Mead Treadwell, and 43 to 27 percent over Joe Miller.


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