The 2018 midterm elections this November are critically important for a number of reasons. One of those reasons is that there are an astonishing 36 gubernatorial races at stake! Governors have provided an important check on Trump’s policies but there’s another especially important reason to get as many Democrats into these positions this year.
Whoever wins this fall will be in the governor’s mansion come 2020. And why does that matter? That year, every state will go through the once-a-decade process of reviewing and redrawing the district maps, and the governor has veto power.*
Once the U.S. Census is taken in 2020 and we have the updated population counts, we will learn which states will be gaining or losing congressional seats. The census information is also used to draw up new maps for both federal and state-level districts. Democrats must be in power–both in the executive positions such as governor and in state legislatures–to influence how the districts are redrawn.
So, let’s be paying attention to these races. If your state is in a good position to flip (or hold) a governor’s seat, put some of your energy there. If your state is either in the super-safe column or you don’t have a governor’s race, look at these race ratings and choose one you want to help from afar. Here’s how 3 different outlets are rating the competitiveness of these races:
You can read a little more about each race in their full article here: 2018 Gubernatorial Race Ratings
Governing’s ratings are similar but not an exact match to Daily Kos. You can read their summary of each of the races here: Can Democrats Flip Crucial Governors’ Seats?
COOK POLITICAL REPORT
Cook Political Report doesn’t provide a summary, but you can find these images (along with race ratings for the U.S. House and U.S. Senate) here: 2018 Governor Race Ratings
*Note: A huge majority of the states use their legislatures to redraw districts, and these plans can be vetoed by the governor. A few states use other methods to draw their lines, and those are not subject to the governor’s veto.
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