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Republicans to Take Over Governors’ Mansions?

The New York Times reports that eight of the eleven governorships up for grabs this year are currently held by Democrats, leaving Republicans with an opportunity to improve on their 29–20 advantage. Republicans are leading in five of these races, with toss-ups in Washington and New Hampshire. If Republicans win these contests, the GOP would hold 33 Governorships to the Democrats’ 16, a difference of more than two to one.

This is no small matter. Many of the defining political battles of the 21st century, including fights over union rights, pension payments and education reform, are being fought at the state level. Innovative state policies that succeed are emulated by other states, driving national politics as well. If Republicans capture more than two-thirds of governor’s mansions, they can push American politics rightward even without a Republican president.

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