It looks like this year will be significant for American politics. There are 36 states hosting the 2022 US gubernatorial elections, despite the attention of many on the forthcoming congressional midterm elections this year.
The Eagleton Center on the American Governor will provide analysis on various aspects of the gubernatorial races over the coming weeks and up until Election Day (and beyond), sometimes focusing on national trends and other times on specific races in an effort to provide a more complete picture of these important contests.
2022 US Gubernatorial Elections Polls
Five of the 36 gubernatorial races scheduled for 2022 are so close that they are classified as tossups in a first thorough examination of the gubernatorial races since January. These five seats are currently represented by four Democrats and one Republican, respectively.
Arizona, Nevada, and Wisconsin, three of the five tight races, have recently had extremely close presidential races. Both heavily red Kansas and solidly blue Oregon are home to tossup races, respectively. Specific circumstances have made the races exceptionally tight in both of those states.
Arizona, Kansas, Nevada, and Wisconsin are the other four races assessed as tossups today that were also on the tossup list in January. Since January, Georgia, which now rates as Lean Republican, and Michigan, which now rates as Lean Democratic, have both left the list of tossup elections. In Oregon, the election has changed from leaning Democratic in January to tossup right now. Democrats possess 22 of the governor seats overall, while Republicans command 28. Within the tossup category, the following states have been ranked in descending order, from most likely to vote Republican to most likely to vote Democratic.
- Kansas: Gov. Laura Kelly (D)
- Nevada: Gov. Steve Sisolak (D)
- Arizona: Open seat (Republican Gov. Doug Ducey is term-limited)
- Wisconsin: Gov. Tony Evers (D)
- Oregon: Open seat (Democratic Gov. Kate Brown is term-limited)
Maine Governor Race
Paul LePage, her predecessor and an ardent conservative who served two terms, is the opponent for Mills. LePage has maintained his support among Republicans, but he’s never won the governorship with more than 48% of the vote. Unlike in some previous elections, there isn’t a third-party contender this year who has a sizable base of support, which may have lowered the threshold for LePage’s victory. (While Maine allows ranked-choice voting in federal elections, statewide offices are not permitted by the state constitution.
Former governor of Maine Paul LePage won the Republican nomination for re-election to his previous position. After serving a second term as governor, LePage, who was not challenged, stepped down in 2018. He left the state but later went back, and now he’s prepared to take on Democratic incumbent Gov. Janet Mills. Mills and LePage are acquainted because she was Maine’s attorney general during his second term. He filed a lawsuit against her at the time for declining to support his administration’s positions on a number of contentious subjects.
Navada Governor Race
After serving on the Clark County Commission and the Nevada Board of Regents, Sisolak was first elected governor in 2018. Speaking about his record as governor, Sisolak said that he “followed through on his promise to not raise taxes on everyday Nevadans,” “increased the minimum wage,” and “lowered health care, child care, and housing costs for families in every corner of our state.” He added that he is “committed to protecting the well-being of Nevadans who’ve called the Silver State home for generations.” “Governors like me are the last line of defense fending abortion access,” Sisolak added in reference to his record on the issue. I issued an executive order shielding Nevada residents seeking contraceptive services from the harsh, anti-abortion legislation of their home states. Democratic governor Steve Sisolak is up for reelection to a second term after winning with 49.4% of the vote in 2018.
Lombardo served in the National Guard, Army Reserve, and U.S. Army. He was elected Clark County sheriff in 2014 after serving as an officer in the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department for 20 years. Sisolak’s performance as governor has drawn criticism from Lombardo, who stated that “November is our chance to bring relief to our state.” Don’t spend carelessly anymore.
2022 Governors analysis
Following Robert J. Bentley’s resignation on April 10, 2017, Governor Kay Ivey assumed office. In 2018, she was elected with 59.5% of the vote to a full term in her own right. With 51.4% of the vote, Mike Dunleavy was elected governor in 2018. On August 13, 2021, he declared that he would seek reelection.
With 56% of the vote, Governor Doug Ducey was re-elected to a second term in 2018. The Arizona Constitution will put a term limit on him in 2022, preventing him from running for reelection a third time. With 65.3% of the vote, Governor Asa Hutchinson won re-election for a second term in 2018. The Arkansas Constitution will put a term limit on him in 2022, preventing him from running for a third term.
Gavin Newsom, the governor who won re-election with 61.9% of the vote in 2018, is seeking a second term. There was a recall election on September 14, 2021. Jared Polis, the governor who won reelection with 53.4% of the vote in 2018, is seeking a second term.
Ned Lamont, who won reelection in 2018 with 49.4% of the vote, is seeking a second term in office. Ron DeSantis, the governor who won reelection with 49.6% of the vote in 2018, is seeking a second term. Former Tallahassee mayor Andrew Gillum, the Democratic candidate for governor in 2018, opted not to challenge DeSantis once more.
Brian Kemp, the governor who won reelection with 50.2% of the vote in 2018, is seeking a second term. With 62.7% of the vote, Governor David Ige won re-election for a second term in 2018. Brad Little, the governor who won reelection with 59.8% of the vote in 2018, is seeking a second term. Little defeated incumbent lieutenant governor Janice McGeachin in the Republican primary despite McGeachin’s announcement of a challenge. J. B. Pritzker, the governor of Illinois who won reelection with 54.5% of the vote in 2018, is seeking a second term. Republican candidates Richard Irvin, Darren Bailey, Gary Rabine, Paul Schimp, and Jesse Sullivan have declared their candidacies. Bailey won the election.
Following Terry Branstad’s retirement on May 24, 2017, Kim Reynolds assumed office. In 2018, she was re-elected with 50.3% of the vote for a full term in office. Democratic governor Laura Kelly is up for reelection to a second term after winning with 48% of the vote in 2018. Derek Schmidt, the attorney general of Kansas, is her opponent on the Republican side.
Democratic governor Janet Mills is up for reelection to a second term after winning with 50.9% of the vote in 2018.  Paul LePage, a former governor and Republican, has declared his intention to run. Both candidates easily won their respective primaries. With 55.4% of the vote, Republican Governor Larry Hogan won re-election for a second term in 2018. With 66.6% of the vote, Governor Charlie Baker won re-election for a second term in 2018.
Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer is seeking reelection to a second term after winning with 53.3% of the vote in 2018. Tim Walz, the governor who won reelection with 53.8% of the vote in 2018, is seeking a second term. With 59% of the vote, Governor Pete Ricketts won re-election for a second term in 2018. The Nebraska Constitution will put a term limit on him in 2022, preventing him from running for reelection a third time.\
Kevin Stitt, the governor who won reelection with 54.3% of the vote in 2018, is seeking a second term. Following John Kitzhaber’s resignation on February 18, 2015, Governor Kate Brown assumed office. With 57.8% of the vote, Governor Tom Wolf was re-elected in 2018. On March 2, 2021, Democratic governor Gina Raimondo resigned and was replaced by Governor Daniel McKee. Following Nikki Haley’s resignation on January 24, 2017, Governor Henry McMaster assumed office. In 2018, with 54% of the vote, he was re-elected to a full term. Kristi Noem, the governor who won re-election to a second term in 2018 with 51% of the vote. Bill Lee, the governor who won reelection with 59.6% of the vote in 2018, is seeking a second term.
2022 US Gubernatorial Elections Odds for Maine & Nevada
Courtesy of Jazzsports
|Maine Governor||Nevada Governor|
|(D) Janet Mills -450||(D) Steve Sisolak -150|
|(R) Paul LePage +325||(R) Joe Lombardo +120|