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Governorships


How Big will Barrett Score in Dane and Milwaukee Counties?

Holding 2010 totals constant for the state's other 70 counties, Barrett would need to carry 75.1 percent of the vote in Wisconsin's two most populated counties to beat Walker on Tuesday (up from 64.1 percent in 2010).

Wisconsin Poised to Extend Competitive Gubernatorial Election Streak

Wisconsin is expected to join Rhode Island, Iowa, and Minnesota on Tuesday for the only states currently with four or more consecutive elections decided by single digits.

Could An Independent Swing Wisconsin's Gubernatorial Recall Election?

Only two independent candidates have ever won more than 1 percent of the vote across 73 Wisconsin gubernatorial elections since 1848; both of these candidates were former Republican officeholders.

Walker's Odds: How Often Do Wisconsin Gubernatorial Incumbents Win Reelection?

Governors in the Badger State have kept their job in 34 of 46 contests since statehood, or 74 percent of the time.

Governor vs. Governor vs. Governor

The last election cycle saw five ex-governors attempt to win back their old jobs, with success stories in California (Jerry Brown), Iowa (Terry Branstad), and Oregon (John Kitzhaber). But in 1904, the State of Wisconsin saw three governors on the general election ballot: two-term Republican incumbent Robert La Follette, former...

Barrett vs. Walker II: A History of Wisconsin Gubernatorial Rematch Elections

Losing gubernatorial candidates have come back for rematches against victorious Republicans and beat them two times out of the six rematches in Wisconsin history.

Angus King Embarks On Well-Trodden Pathway to Maine US Senate Seat

Nine sitting or former governors have been elected U.S. Senator in the Pine Tree State including four during the popular vote era.

Could Heath Shuler or Brad Miller Buck History in North Carolina's Gubernatorial Race?

Only four sitting North Carolina U.S. Representatives or U.S. Senators have won a gubernatorial election in state history, and only one in the last 100 years.

Scott Walker Faces 3rd Shortest Wisconsin Gubernatorial Tenure if Recalled

Only an acting governor and a governor who died on a Civil War relief expedition will have served fewer days in office than Walker.

The Top Five Smart Politics Reports of 2011

A look back at some of the most illuminating and controversial of the 200+ Smart Politics reports published this year.

Democrats Tally Worst Showing in Mississippi Gubernatorial Race Since Reconstruction

For the second consecutive election cycle, the Democratic vote in Mississippi's gubernatorial race declines to a new post-Reconstruction low.

Williams Records 4th Worst GOP Gubernatorial Tally in Kentucky in 140 Years

David Williams now holds two of the 10 worst showings by a Republican gubernatorial, U.S. Senate, or presidential nominee in Kentucky since 1871.

Kentucky GOP Poised for 2nd Worst Gubernatorial Showing Since 1870

Only once in the last 140 years have Kentucky Republicans failed to win at least one-third of the gubernatorial vote.

Do Governors Make the "Most Successful Presidents?"

The top rated presidents in U.S. history are split 50/50 between those who had gubernatorial experience and those that did not.

Could Tommy Thompson Win Wisconsin's U.S. Senate Seat?

No ex- (non-sitting) Wisconsin governor has ever been elected to a 1st term in the U.S. Senate

Pence Seeks First Governorship by Sitting Indiana Congressman Since 1888

A sitting U.S. Representative from Indiana has not won a gubernatorial election in 123 years

Tim Kaine in 2012 and Virginia's (Sometimes Sticky) New Revolving Door from Richmond to D.C.

Kaine campaign would mean seven of the last 10 Virginia ex-governors launched U.S. Senate bids, including each of the last five

What's in a Photo? A Political Analysis of Gubernatorial Portraits

Republican governors are eight times more likely to wear flag pins on their lapels than Democrats, and three times more likely to wear red ties over blue

Most Popular Google Autocomplete Search Results for the Nation's 50 Governors

While most top gubernatorial Google autocomplete search results are mundane, "Nazi," "racist," "birth certificate," and "death panel" define some governors

Scott Walker Dominates 2011 Media Coverage of Gubernatorial Politics

Wisconsin governor has been mentioned in 26 percent of cable TV gubernatorial news stories in 2011 - more than 42 other governors combined

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Political Crumbs

Mary Burke: English First?

While multiculturalism and bilingualism are increasingly en vogue in some quarters as the world seemingly becomes a smaller place, one very high profile 2014 Democratic candidate does not shy away from the fact that she only speaks one language: English. In an attempt to highlight her private sector credentials working for Trek Bicycle, Wisconsin Democratic gubernatorial nominee Mary Burke boasts on her campaign bio page how she made great strides in international business dealings...while only speaking English: "Despite not speaking a single foreign language, she established sales and distribution operations in seven countries over just three years." Note: According to 2010 Census data, nearly half a million Wisconsinites over five years old speak a language other than English at home, or 8.7 percent, while 4.6 percent of Badger State residents do not speak English at all.


Does My Key Still Work?

Much has been made about Charlie Crist's political transformation from Republican to independent to Democrat en route to winning the Florida GOP and Democratic gubernatorial nominations over a span of eight years. Party-switching aside, Crist is also vying to become just the second Florida governor to serve two interrupted terms. Democrat William Bloxham was the first - serving four year terms from 1881 to 1885 and then 1897 to 1901. Florida did not permit governors serving consecutive terms for most of its 123 years prior to changes made in its 1968 constitution. Since then four have done so: Democrats Reubin Askew, Bob Graham, and Lawton Chiles and Republican Jeb Bush.


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