Cook Political Moves Five Gov. Races Toward GOP, Three Toward Democrats
The Cook Political Report made ratings changes in eight gubernatorial races. Here is a breakdown.
Toward The GOP:
Texas Governor -- Toss Up to Lean R: GOP Gov. Rick Perry has successfully turned back a very competitive challenge from former Houston Mayor Bill White.
Georgia Governor -- Toss Up to Lean R: Despite carrying some heavy ethical baggage, former GOP Rep. Nathan Deal appears well-positioned to defeat former Democratic Gov. Roy Barnes. The question is whether Deal can get the 50 percent of the vote needed to avoid a run-off.
Wisconsin Governor -- Toss Up to Lean R: Aided by the political environment and an aggressive campaign, Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker (R) has opened up a lead in the high single digits over Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett (D).
New Mexico Governor -- Toss Up to Lean R: While Democratic Lt. Gov. Diane Denish has run a solid campaign against Dona Ana County District Attorney Susana Martinez (R), she has had to fight against the political environment and her role as outgoing Gov. Bill Richardson's (D) second in command. Martinez is poised to become the state's first woman governor.
South Dakota Governor -- Likely R to Solid R: Nothing to see here. Republican Lt. Gov. Dennis Daugaard will win big.
Maryland Governor -- Toss Up to Lean D: Democratic Gov. Martin O'Malley has opened up a lead over former GOP Gov. Bob Ehrlich, and seems assured of a second term.
New Hampshire Governor -- Toss Up to Lean D: Democratic Gov. John Lynch appears likely to avoid being a casualty of the Republican wave and will win an unprecedented fourth term.
Iowa Governor -- Likely R to Lean R: Polls show this race have closed. Former GOP Gov. Terry Branstad remains a clear favorite to unseat Democratic Gov. Chet Culver, but the outcome may be closer than many expect.