Outcome of Governors' Races Could Be Historic

It's been 30 years since more than 6 incumbents were booted
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 20, 2014 10:33 AM CDT
Outcome of Governors' Races Could Be Historic
This Oct. 15, 2014, file photo shows Democratic challenger, former Gov. Charlie Crist, left, and Florida Republican Gov. Rick Scott shaking hands after participating in their debate in Davie, Fla.   (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee, Pool)

It's been 30 years since more than six governors were ousted in one fell swoop, but this year could prove a revolutionary election. Eleven incumbents are in trouble in the polls (and two other open-seat races could see a party switch), the Washington Post reports. And with just two weeks left before their constituents head to the voting booths, there may not be much time left to plead their case. Some highlights:

  • The Post reports there are 36 Senate races and 36 gubernatorial races taking place, but when it comes to spending on TV commercials, the biggest spending is occurring via the latter. The Center for Public Integrity reports that about $379 million has been spent on gubernatorial ads, to Senate candidates' $321 million. Eight of the 10 biggest spenders are running for governor (Kentucky's Mitch McConnell and Louisiana's Mary Landrieu represent the Senate's big-spenders).

  • Micah Cohen accurately predicted on the FiveThirtyEight blog last year that four of the Republican governors "who rode the Tea Party wave to power in blue and purple states in 2010" would be in peril right now: Pennsylvania's Tom Corbett ("a goner for sure," quips the Post), Maine's Paul LePage, Michigan's Rick Snyder, and Florida's Rick Scott.
  • Speaking of Scott, who was just last week embroiled in Fangate with Republican-turned-Democrat opponent Charlie Crist: Florida takes top honors for the most expensive governor's race in the country, at $62 million in TV-ad buys.
  • Aside from the aforementioned four states, the Post runs down nine more states that could see a party switch: Georgia, Massachusetts (open seat), Alaska, Wisconsin, Colorado, Illinois, Connecticut, Kansas, and Arkansas (open seat). More details on what's happening in those spots at the Post.
  • For more on what's shaping up to be the most expensive Senate race ever, click here.
(More gubernatorial races stories.)

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