Governor Races 2010 Header Graphic
Balance before was 26 Democrats, 24 Republicans.
37 seats at stake:
19 held by Democrats and 18 by Republicans.
24 open seats of which12 held by Democrats and 12 by Republicans.
15 Governors were term limited, 8 retiring and 1 defeated in primary.
Of 13 sitting Governors seeking re-election or election on Nov. 2, 11 succeeded.
26 new* Governors were elected: 17 Republicans, 8 Democrats and 1 Independent.
Republicans won 23 seats, Democrats 13 seats and Independent 1 seat.
Balance after is 29 Republicans, 20 Democrats and 1 Independent.

*Three had served previously.
Updated December 23, 2010.


Most noteworthy was the large number of open seats.  Compare to
2006 when 36 seats were up but only nine governors were term limited or retiring.  Five former governors sought to reclaim their old offices: CA-Jerry Brown (D), GA-Roy Barnes (D), IA-Terry Branstad (R), MD-John Ehrlich (R), and OR-John Kitzhaber (D); three succeeded.  Ten of the 74 major party nominees were women; four of the five Republican women were elected and none of the five Democratic women were elected.  There were a few strong independent candidates; Lincoln Chaffee won in Rhode Island, Eliot Cutler came very close in Maine and Tim Cahill faded in Massachusetts.  The strongest third party candidates included Tom Tancredo (C) in Colorado, Tom Horner (IP) in Minnesota, and Rich Whitney (G) in Illinois.  Heading into Election Day most observers foresaw a likelihood of Republican gains, although Democrats pointed to opportunities (>) in the difficult environment.  Also note in addition to the elections listed below, there were elections for mayor of the District of Columbia and governors of Guam and USVI.  In Dec. 2010 and Jan. 2011, 26 new governors will take office.
See also:
NGA  |  DGA  |  RGA.
By Party: D  |  R
  |  L  |  G    |  C  |  O/I.

Winners in bold; not every third party and independent candidate is shown.

May 18
Mike Beebe
businessman Jim Keet
Frank Gilbert (C)
Aug. 10
*[Bill Ritter (retiring-01/06/10)]
Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper
businessman Dan Maes
Tom Tancredo (C)
Jaimes Brown (L)
Jason R. Clark (una)
Paul Noel Fiorino (una)
Peter J. Carr (una)
Feb. 2
Pat Quinn
state Sen. Bill Brady
Michael White (C)
Rich Whitney (G)
Lex Green (L)
Scott Lee Cohen (I)
William Walls III (I)
June 8
Chet Culver
former Gov. Terry Branstad
Eric Cooper (L)
Jonathan Narcisse (Iowa)
David Rosenfeld (SWP) >
Gregory Hughes (Pet.)
Aug. 3
*[Mark Parkinson (retiring)]
State Sen./IT exec. Tom Holland
Sen. Sam Brownback
Andrew Gray (L)
Ken Cannon (Ref.)
June 8
*[John Baldacci (term limited)]
State Senate President Libby Mitchell
Waterville Mayor Paul LePage Eliot Cutler (I)
Shawn Moody (I)
Kevin Scott (I)
Sept. 14
Martin O'Malley
former Gov. Bob Ehrlich
Eric Knowles (C)
Maria Allwine (G)
Susan Gaztañaga (L)
Sept. 14
Deval Patrick
Harvard Pilgrim Health Care CEO Charlie Baker
Treasurer Tim Cahill (I)
Jill Stein (GRP)
Aug. 3
*[Jennifer Granholm (term limited)]
Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero

venture capitalist Rick Snyder
Ken Proctor (L)
Stacey Mathia (USTPM)
Sept. 14
John Lynch
attorney John Stephen
John Babiarz (L)
June 1
*[Bill Richardson (term limited)]
Lt. Gov. Diane Denish
Doña Ana County District Attorney Susana Martinez

Sept. 14
*[David Paterson (retiring-02/26/10)]
AG Andrew Cuomo
Buffalo real estate developer Carl Paladino
Howie Hawkins (G)
Warren Redlich (L)
May 4
Ted Strickland
former Rep. John Kasich
Ken Matesz (L)
Dennis Spisak (G)
July 27
*[Brad Henry (term limited)]
Jari Askins
Rep. Mary Fallin

May 18
*[Ted Kulongoski (term limited)]
former Gov. John Kitzhaber
former NBA player Chris Dudley
Greg Kord (C)
Wes Wagner (L)
Jerry Wilson (Prog)
May 18
*[Ed Rendell (term limited)]
Allegheny County Exec. Dan Onorato
AG Tom Corbett

Aug. 5
*[Phil Bredesen (term limited)]
businessman Mike McWherter
Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam Howard Switzer (G)
Sept. 14
*[Jim Doyle (retiring-08/15/09)]
Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett
Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker
James James
Jim Langer
Aug. 17
*[Dave Freudenthal (term limited)]
(some talk of a challenge, but ruled out on 03/04/10)
former Dem. chair Leslie Petersen
former U.S. Attorney Matt Mead

June 1
Ag. Comm. Ron Sparks
*[Bob Riley (term limited)] 
State Rep. Robert Bentley
(won July 13 runoff)

Aug. 24
former House Minority Leader Ethan Berkowitz Sean Parnell
Don Wright (AIP)
Billy Toien (L)
Aug. 24
AG Terry Goddard
Jan Brewer
Larry Gist (G)
Barry Hess (L)
June 8
AG Jerry Brown
*[Arnold Schwarzenegger (term limited)]
former eBay CEO Meg Whitman
Chelene Nightingale (AIP)
Laura Wells (G)
Dale F. Ogden (L)
Carlos Alvarez (P&F)
Aug. 10
Stamford Mayor Dan Malloy *[Jodi Rell (retiring-11/09/09)]
businessman and former U.S. Ambassador to Ireland Tom Foley
Tom Marsh (IP)
Aug. 24
CFO Alex Sink
*[Charlie Crist (running for Senate)]
health care executive Rick Scott
July 20
former Gov. Roy Barnes
*[Sonny Purdue (term limited)]
former Rep. Nathan Deal (won Aug. 10 runoff)
John Monds (L)
Sept. 18
former Rep. Neil Abercrombie
*[Linda Lingle (term limited)]
Lt. Gov. Duke Aiona
Tony Clapes (I)
Tom Pollard (I)
May 25
mediator and 501(c)(3) founder Keith Allred
C.L. "Butch" Otter
Ted Dunlap (L)
Jana Kemp (I)
former U.S. Sen. Mark Dayton
*[Tim Pawlenty (retiring-06/02/09)]
State Rep. Tom Emmer
Tom Horner (IP)
May 11
attorney Mike Meister
Note: The original nominee, investment banker Mark Lakers, who was unopposed in the May primary, withdrew on July 2 due to poor fundraising. 

Dave Heineman

June 8
Clark County Commission Chair Rory Reid
*[Jim Gibbons (defeated in primary)]
former federal Judge Brian Sandoval
Floyd Fitzgibbons (IAP)
David Scott Curtis (G)
Art Lampitt, Jr. (L)
Gino DiSimone (I)
Aaron Y. Honig (I)
Sept. 14
Treasurer Frank Caprio *[Don Carcieri (term limited)]
John Robitaille
Lincoln Chafee (I)
Ken Block (M)
Todd Giroux (I)
June 8
State Sen. Vincent Sheheen
*[Mark Sanford (term limited)]
State Rep. Nikki Haley (won June 22 runoff)
Morgan Reeves (G/UCP)

June 8
State Senate Majority Leader Scott Heidepriem
*[Mike Rounds (term limited)]
Lt. Gov. Dennis Daugaard

March 2
former Mayor Bill White
Rick Perry
Deb Shafto (G)
Kathie Glass (L)
Salt Lake County Mayor Peter Corroon
Gary Herbert
Andrew McCullough (L)
Aug. 24
Senate President pro-tem Peter Shumlin *[Jim Douglas (retiring-08/27/09)]
Lt. Gov. Brian Dubie
Chris Ericson (USMJ)
Dan Feliciano (I)
Ben Mitchell (Soc.)
Em Peyton (I)
Dennis Steele (I)

IL Feb. 2
TX Mar. 2

OH May 4
NE May 11
AR May 18
ID May 25
AL June 1
CA June 8

GA July 20
OK July 27
KS Aug. 3
TN Aug. 5
CO Aug. 10
WY Aug. 17
AK Aug. 24
MD Sept. 14
HI Sept. 18

An Overview of Interesting Primaries

September 18
HI DEM GOP: Former Rep. Neil Abercrombie who resigned from his seat in Congress to focus on his campaign, defeated former Honolulu MayorMufi Hannemann by a 60% to 38% margin.

September 14

MD GOP: Former Gov. Bob Ehrlich had no trouble defeating investor Brian Murphy, who was endorsed by Sarah Palin.

MA GOP: The nomination was determined back in April, when health care executive Charlie Baker defeated Christie Mihos at the State Convention.

NH GOP: Attorney and former Health Commissioner John Stephen obtained 61.5% of the vote, defeating businessman Jack Kimball, Karen Testerman, and state Rep. Frank Emiro.

NY GOP: Former Rep. Rick Lazio won the GOP nomination over Steve Levy on June 2, but on primary day Buffalo developer Carl Paladino, who had to petition to get on the primary ballot, prevailed in a big upset.

RI GOP: John Robitaille easily defeated former state Rep. Victor Moffit.

WI GOP: Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker defeated builder and former Rep. Mark Neumann
August 24
AK DEM: Former State House Minority Leader Ethan Berkowitz, who ran for Lt. Gov. on the Knowles ticket in 2006 and for U.S. House in 2008, defeated state Sen. Hollis French.

VT DEM: Five credible candidates sought the nomination and the outcome was very close.  Senate President pro-tem Peter Shumlin, state Sen. Doug Racine and Secretary of State Deb Markowitz were separated by fewer than a thousand votes; former state Sen. Matt Dunne finished fourth and state Sen. Susan Bartlett rounded out the field.
AZ GOP: Early on in the cycle it appeared that Gov. Jan Brewer might face a strong challenge from within the party, but her signature on S.B. 1070 gave her a huge boost.

FL GOP: The bitter campaign between establishment-backed Attorney General Bill McCollum and health care executive Rick Scott went through a number of ups and downs.  When outsider Scott entered the race in April, McCollum was the decided favorite; later Scott seemed to pull ahead, but as the primary approached the race seemed to tilt back to McCollum's favor.  Scott and his wife together spent more than $50 million.  Scott obtained 46% of the vote to 43% for McCollum and 10% for Mike McCalister.
August 17
WY DEM: Former Democratic chair Leslie Petersen finished ahead of pilot and former Univ. of Wyoming football star Pete Gosar and three other candidates.
WY GOP: Former U.S. Attorney Matt Mead, finished atop the field of seven candidates with 29%, followed very closely by Auditor Rita Meyer (endorsed by Sarah Palin) with 28%.  Former director of the WY Dept. of Agriculture and former House Majority Leader Ron Micheli was a close third and state House Speaker Colin Simpson finished fourth.
August 10
CT DEM: Businessman Ned Lamont reportedly spent more than $7 million of his own money but Stamford Mayor Dan Malloy, who won the party's endorsement at its convention in May, secured a broad victory.

House Speaker Margaret Anderson Kelliher won the DFL endorsement at the party's convention in Duluth on April 24 (it took six ballots for her to vanquish four challengers including Minneapolis Mayor RT Rybak), but former U.S. Sen. Mark Dayton edged to a narrow primary victory; former House Minority Leader Matt Entenza placed third.

CO GOP: The Republican contest became something of a soap opera.  Former Rep. Scott McInniss was favored until July when plagarism charges arose; meanwhile the other Republican candidate, Dan Maes, was charged with campaign finance violations.  One scenario had it that Republicans would force McInniss out after he won the primary.  Former Rep. Tom Tancredo added to the mix by announcing on July 26 that he is running under the banner of the American Constitution Party (+).  The McInniss scenario became moot when Maes upset him by 50.6% to 49.3%

Businessman and former U.S. Ambassador to Ireland Tom Foley defeated Lt. Gov. Michael Fedele and businessman Oz Griebel.

GA GOP runoff Former Rep. Nathan Deal (endorsed by N.Gingrich and in the runoff by M.Huckabee) edged to a 50.2% to 49.8% win over former Sec. of State Karen Handel (endorsed by S.Palin and in the runoff by M.Romney) in the runoff.
August 5

TN GOP: Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam garnered about 47.6% of the vote to about 28.9% for Rep. Zach Wamp and 22.1% for Senate Speaker and Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey.
August 3
MI DEM: Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero defeated House Speaker Andy Dillon by a margin of 58.6% to 41.4%.
MI GOP: Out of a field of five Republican candidates the outsider prevailed as venture capitalist Rick Snyder secured 36.4% of the Republican vote; Rep. Pete Hoekstra (26.8%), Attorney General Mike Cox (23.0%), Oakland County Sheriff Mike Bouchard (12.2%) and  state Sen. Tom George (1.6%) trailed.
July 27 OK DEM: Lt. Gov. Jari Askins edged out Attorney General Drew Edmondson by 50.3% to 49.7%.
OK GOP: Four candidates competed for the nomination; Rep. Mary Fallin obtained about 55% of the vote to 39% for state Sen. Randy Brogdon.
July 20
GA DEM: Former Gov. Roy Barnes secured about 65% of the vote; the next closest candidate was Attorney General Thurbert Baker with 21.5%.
GA GOP: Seven candidates sought the nomination.  Former Sec. of State Karen Handel (endorsed by S.Palin) and former Rep. Nathan Deal (endorsed by N.Gingrich) are headed for an Aug. 10 runoff;  State Senate President Eric Johnson finished third and Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine was fourth.
July 13

AL GOP runoff: State Sen. Bradley Byrne defeated state Rep. Robert Bentley by 54% to 46%, although Bentley had the backing of the GOP establishment.  Voter turnout was just under 20%.
June 22

SC GOP runoff: State Rep. Nikki Haley defeated Rep. Gresham Barrett by 65% to 35%.  Haley gained the support of third place finisher Henry McMaster while Andre Bauer backed Barrett.
June 8
ME DEM: Senate President Libby Mitchell (35%) won the nomination in a four-way contest over former AG Steve Rowe (23%), affordable housing executive Rosa Scarcelli (21%), and former Commissioner of the Maine Department of Conservation Pat McGowan (20%).

SC DEM: State Sen. Vincent Sheheen defeated State Superintendent of Education Jim Rex and state Sen. Robert Ford by 59.0% to 23.0% and 18.0%.
CA GOP: After a closely fought campaign, former E-Bay CEO Meg Whitman trounced Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner by 64.2% to 26.9%.  Whitman spent more than $81 million on her campaign, at least $71 million of it her own money, while Poizner invested $24 million of his money in the race.

IA GOP: Former Gov. Terry Branstad, the longest serving governor in Iowa's history (1983-98), defeated former Lt. Gov. Bob Vander Plaats and Assembly Minority Leader Rod Roberts by 50.3% to 40.9 and 8.8%.

ME GOP: Seven Republicans vied for the nomination.  Waterville Mayor Paul LePage won (38%), followed by Les Otten (17%), state Sen. Peter Mills (14%), Collins' chief of staff Steve Abbott (13%), Husson University CEO Bill Beardsley (10%) and Bruce Polquin and Matt Jacobson rounding out the field.

NV GOP: Former Federal Judge Brian Sandoval defeated scandal-plagued Gov. Jim Gibbons by 55.5% to 27.2%

SC GOP: State Rep. Nikki Haley finished with 48.9%, just shy of the requisite 50%, and faces a runoff against Rep. Gresham Barrett (21.8%); also running were AG Henry McMaster (16.3%) and Lt. Gov. Andre Bauer (12.5%).
SD GOP: Lt. Gov. Dennis Daugaard obtained 50.4% of the vote followed by Brookings Mayor Scott Munsterman (17.6%), Senate Majority Leader Dave Knudson (15.8%), "Tea Party Republican" Gordon Howie (12.44%) and Ken Knuppe (3.8%).
June 1
AL DEM: In an upset, Agriculture Commissioner Ron Sparks handily defeated Rep. Artur Davis, who was seeking to become the first African-American governor of the state.
AL GOP: In a crowded field state Sen. Bradley Byrne finished first (27.9%) and faces a runoff with state Rep. Robert Bentley (25.1%). Businessman Tim James (25.1%) finished a very close third even after a recount; former Chief Justice Roy Moore finished fourth (19%).

NM GOP: Prosecutor Susana Martinez defeated former state party chair Allen Weh
by 50.7% to 27.6% with PR executive Doug Turner, attorney Pete Domenici, Jr. and state Rep. Janice Arnold-Jones rounding out the field.
May 18 OR DEM: Former Gov. John Kitzhaber, who served two terms as governor from 1995-2003, easily defeated former Sec. of State Bill Bradbury by 65% to 30%.

Allegheny County Exec. Dan Onorato won 45% of the vote in a four-man primary, defeating Auditor General Jack Wagner (24%), Tony Williams (18%) and former Rep. Joe Hoeffel (13%).

OR GOP: Former NBA basketball player Chris Dudley defeated '08 Treasurer candidate Allen Alley by 39% to 32% with 15% going to John Lim.
March 3

TX GOP: Gov. Rick Perry won the primary convincingly, gaining 51.1% of the vote to 30.3% for U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison and 18% for tea party-backed Debra Medina.
Feb. 2
IL DEM: Gov. Pat Quinn, who succeeded impeached Gov. Rod Blagojevich, defeated Comptroller Dan Hynes by less than 10,000 votes out of 915,726 cast. IL GOP: The field included four major candidates: State Sen. Bill Brady, state Sen. Kirk Dillard, former AG Jim Ryan and former state GOP chair Andy McKenna; Brady edged out Dillard by less than 200 votes.