Governor's Races a Wash; Look Out for Pence in 2016

Governor's Races a Wash; Look Out for Pence in 2016

The advantage that Republicans hold in the number of governors across the country marginally increased thanks to Tuesday night’s elections. 

The GOP had 29 governors to the Democrats’ 20 before the election. Now they have at least one more, from North Carolina, where for the first time in more than twenty years the state’s governor will be a Republican: former Charlotte mayor Pat McCrory.

One race is still too close to call. In Washington, former Democratic Congressman Jay Inslee was leading Republican Attorney General Rob McKenna 51% to 49% with 60% of the votes counted. Washington hasn’t had a Republican governor since 1980.

A significant race even, though its outcome was expected, was in Indiana, where powerhouse 12-year congressman Mike Pence won the statehouse. Pence had considered running for president in 2012 but decided that Congress to the White House was too much of a leap; he will be a formidable presidential candidate in 2016.

Incumbents did well; In North Dakota Republican Gov. Jack Dalrymple won, and in Utah Republican Gov. Gary Herbert also won. Democrats Peter Shumlin in Vermont, Jay Nixon in Missouri, and Jack Markell in Delaware all won. In Montana, Democratic Gov. Brian Schweitzer was replaced by Democratic state Attorney General Steve Bullock. In New Hampshire, Democratic Gov. John Lynch was replaced by Democrat Maggie Hassan.

More often than not, presidential candidates come from governors’ offices, so it is significant that Republicans still control the statehouses.

Keep your eye on Pence.