Governor Forecast 2006 Update
by Jonathan Singer, Tue Sep 12, 2006 at 04:03:27 PM EDT
The race for control over the nation's governorships remains surprisingly static even as developments in individual races shift numbers one way or another and a handful of primaries remain before all of the ballots are set.
As the Democrats' chances in states like Alaska and Alabama decline, states like Minnesota and Nevada are becoming more competitive. Races in which Democrats are currently favored to pick up seats (Arkansas and Maryland, for example) are not tightening up, which also bodes well for the party. At the same time, the Democrats still must watch out for Republican challenges in Midwestern states like Wisconsin and Iowa as the GOP tries to capitalize on general voter discontent, and a handful of other Democratic Governors outside of the region must remain vigilant lest they lose their current advantages.
The Governor Forecast 2006, which I am updating on Tuesdays and Fridays and which I will run down on MyDD's front page every Tuesday afternoon/evening between now and election day, still shows the Democrats in a good position to pick up a solid majority of the nation's governorships.
My overall outlook is unchanged from last month, though I now see a greater possibility of Michigan's Democratic Governor Jennifer Granholm losing in November. Nevertheless, I currently predict Democratic wins in New York, Ohio, Massachusetts, Arkansas, Maryland, Colorado and Rhode Island. The resulting current prediction is a flip in control of the governorships. Currently, Republicans hold 28 seats while Democrats hold 22; I now forsee the Democrats winning 29 positions to the Republicans 21.
- Safe Democratic: New York
- Likely Democratic: Ohio and Massachusetts
- Leans Democratic: Arkansas, Maryland and Colorado
- Toss-Up: Rhode Island
- Leans Republican: Minnesota, Nevada, California and Florida
- Likely Republican: Alaska, Georgia, South Carolina and Alabama
- Safe Republican: Jodi Rell in Connecticut, Linda Lingle in Hawaii, Butch Otter in Idaho (filling an open seat), Dave Heineman in Nebraska, Mike Rounds in South Dakota, Rick Perry in Texas (though the race should be interesting with two strong independent candidates), and Jim Douglas in Vermont.
- Toss-Up: Michigan, Iowa, Wisconsin and Maine
- Leans Democratic: Illinois and Oregon
- Likely Democratic: Pennsylvania and Arizona
- Safe Democrat: Kathleen Sebelius in Kansas, John Lynch in New Hampshire, Bill Richardson in New Mexico, Brad Henry in Oklahoma, Phil Bredesen in Tennessee, and Dave Freudenthal in Wyoming.
For polling and analysis on the key races, make sure to check out the full Governor Forecast 2006.