Republicans captured governorships that had been held by Democrats in Michigan, Tennessee, Kansas, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Wyoming, Ohio, Iowa, New Mexico, and Oklahoma. In other big races, Nikki Haley won in South Carolina, Jan Brewer won in Arizona, and Harry Reid's son lost in Nevada. GOP highlights below; see Democratic highlights here:
- Ohio: Former Rep. John Kasich defeated Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland, giving the GOP control of the battleground state considered crucial to the 2012 presidential election.
- South Carolina: Tea-party backed Haley became the state's first female governor and the nation's second Indian-American governor, replacing term-limited Gov. Mark Sanford.
- Michigan: Rick Snyder, the businessman who promoted himself as a political outsider able to ease the state's economic woes, beat Democrat Virg Bernero.
- Arizona: Brewer, riding a wave of support for the state's controversial illegal immigration law, defeated Democratic challenger Terry Goddard.
- Oklahoma: Rep. Mary Fallin has made history in her state, becoming its first female governor after besting Democratic Lt. Gov. Jari Askins.
- Tennessee: Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam defeated Democratic businessman Mike McWherter to win the state's open governorship.
- Nevada: Brian Sandoval defeated Democrat Rory Reid, son of Harry Reid, to become the first Hispanic governor in the state's history.
- Wisconsin: Scott Walker rode his tax cut promises to victory over Democrat Tom Barrett.
- Kansas: Sam Brownback is returning home to be governor of Kansas after 16 years in Washington, having defeated Democratic state Sen. Tom Holland in his bid to reclaim the office that Democrats held the past eight years.
- Texas: Gov. Rick Perry has defeated Democrat Bill White to win a third four-year term as governor. Perry repeatedly criticized Barack Obama and national Democrats and tried to link White to them.
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