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Governorships


Remembering the Historic Gubernatorial Class of 2002

25 candidates were elected governor for the first time in 2002, the largest number since WWII; record could be eclipsed in 2010

How Does Tim Pawlenty Rank in the Gubernatorial Class of 2002 on Jobs?

Minnesota Governor has presided over 64.4 percent increase in unemployment, slightly better than his gubernatorial Class of '02 as well as the national average

Long Legislative Service Not a Prescription for Gubernatorial Electoral Success in Minnesota

Only one Minnesota Governor since statehood has spent as much time in the legislature as 2010 DFL candidates Margaret Anderson Kelliher and Matt Entenza

Will Voter ID Issue Turn Conservative Democrats Into 'Emmercrats' in MN Gubernatorial Race?

Emmer continues to highlight voter ID as core issue to 2010 campaign; popular issue may be the lure to get conservative Democrats onto his coalition's hook

Will Margaret Anderson Kelliher Break the Upper Midwestern Glass Ceiling?

Just 17 women have appeared on the gubernatorial ballot in 257 elections across Minnesota, Iowa, South Dakota, and Wisconsin; only 2 from major political parties

How High Will the GOP (Tidal) Wave Be When It Hits Minnesota in November?

All signs point to GOP momentum in states across each of Minnesota's borders

Will Minnesotans Elect a Catholic Governor in 2010?

Only one Catholic has ever been elected Governor in Minnesota history; Seifert, Emmer, Kelliher, Rukavina, Thissen among 2010 Catholic gubernatorial candidates

Will Minnesotans Elect Another Lawyer to the Governor's Mansion in 2010?

Pawlenty was first Gopher State Governor elected with a law degree since 1974; from 1910-1974, 90 percent of elected governors had a legal education

Will the DFL Cancel Minnesota's Membership to the 'Lonely Republican Governors Club' in 2010?

Minnesota could emerge from Election 2010 as one of just two states in the nation with a Republican governor and Democratic-led delegations to the U.S. Senate, U.S. House, State Senate, and State House

Tim Pawlenty Job Approval Rating Hits All-Time Low

Analysis of over 70 polls since 2003 finds Pawlenty's current job approval rating lowest in 7+ years in office

Pawlenty Prepares Veto #101 for Health Care Bill

Governor begins 8th year in office with 100 vetoes under his belt and a policy agenda undaunted by large DFL legislative majorities

A Content Analysis of Governor Pawlenty's 2010 State of the State Address

Governor's focus on jobs in speech up more than threefold from 2009 Address despite yearly drop in unemployment

Pawlenty Proposal to Get Tough on Sex Offenders Likely to Have Huge Public Support

Previous polling suggests Minnesota residents back various tougher penalties on sex offenders by greater than 3:1 margins

Why Minnesota Democrats Should Be Thankful Tim Pawlenty Is Not Running for Reelection

Republican gubernatorial incumbents in Minnesota have won 93 percent of reelection defenses since statehood (25 of 27), while losing 70 percent of open seat contests over the past century

Minnesota GOP Caucus Gubernatorial Straw Poll Voter Turnout Up Over 20 Percent from 2002

Despite the characterization that caucus night was a quiet night for Republicans in some media reports, GOP turnout nonetheless increased by more than 20 percent since the last time the party was searching for its gubernatorial nominee back in 2002

To the 'Losers' of the 2010 Minnesota Gubernatorial Straw Polls...

Tim Pawlenty, finished in 2nd place out of 3 candidates in the 2002 Republican gubernatorial straw poll

What's In a Name? Could Scrabble Scores Determine Minnesota's Next Governor?

Gubernatorial candidates with longer names and names with letters totaling higher Scrabble tile values are nearly twice as likely to win general election races throughout Minnesota history

From the U.S. Senate to St. Paul: Dayton (and Coleman?) Try to Make History

Pathway from 1 of 100 to 1 of 50 has been steep and narrow for Minnesota politicians

Can the GOP Sweep All Four Upper Midwestern Gubernatorial Contests in November?

Republicans have swept nearly half the gubernatorial election cycles in the region over the past 100 years, including 1990 and 1994

Can the DFL Win a Gubernatorial Election with a Democrat in the White House?

DFL / Democratic Party has won only 12 percent of gubernatorial races in state history with a Democratic President in Washington

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Political Crumbs

Gubernatorial Highs and Lows

Two sitting governors currently hold the record for the highest gubernatorial vote ever received in their respective states by a non-incumbent: Republican Matt Mead of Wyoming (65.7 percent in 2010) and outgoing GOPer Dave Heineman of Nebraska (73.4 percent in 2006). Republican Gary Herbert of Utah had not previously won a gubernatorial contest when he notched a state record 64.1 percent for his first victory in 2010, but was an incumbent at the time after ascending to the position in 2009 after the early departure of Jon Huntsman. Meanwhile, two sitting governors hold the record in their states for the lowest mark ever recorded by a winning gubernatorial candidate (incumbent or otherwise): independent-turned-Democrat Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island (36.1 percent in 2010) and Democrat Terry McAuliffe of Virginia (47.8 percent in 2013).


An Idaho Six Pack

Two-term Idaho Republican Governor Butch Otter only polled at 39 percent in a recent PPP survey of the state's 2014 race - just four points ahead of Democratic businessman A.J. Balukoff. Otter's low numbers reflect his own struggles as a candidate (witness his weak primary win against State Senator Russ Fulcher) combined with the opportunity for disgruntled Idahoans to cast their votes for one of four third party and independent candidates, who collectively received the support of 12 percent of likely voters: Libertarian John Bujak, the Constitution Party's Steve Pankey, and independents Jill Humble and Pro-Life (aka Marvin Richardson). The six candidate options in a gubernatorial race sets an all-time record in the Gem State across the 46 elections conducted since statehood. The previous high water mark of five candidates was reached in seven previous cycles: 1902, 1904, 1908, 1912, 1914, 1966, and 2010.


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