ADEA State Update

Governors Races and State Legislatures

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2018MidtermsVictors in nearly all governors races have been declared, and as predicted, Democrats made significant gains by picking up offices in seven states previously held by Republicans. Democrats successfully flipped offices in Illinois, Kansas, New Mexico, Maine, Michigan, Nevada and Wisconsin. Alaska was the lone Republican pickup, as the state’s governor is currently an independent.

Both Georgia and Florida’s races are still too close to call. In Georgia, Republican Brian Kemp holds a small lead over Democrat Stacey Abrams. Abrams has refused to concede until all provisional ballots have been counted. According to the current count, Kemp won 50.3% of the vote, but if the provisional ballots cause Kemp’s percentage to dip below 50%, the state will hold a runoff election in December. In Florida, a recount is currently underway as state law requires an automatic recount when the margin of victory is below 0.5%. According to the pre-recount vote tally, Republican Ron DeSantis won 49.6% of the vote, while Democrat Andrew Gillum won 49.2% of the vote.

On the state legislative side, Republicans continued their dominance, but Democrats gained ground. Democrats successfully flipped control of six legislative chambers and gained control of the New York Senate where, despite having an official majority, eight Democrats caucused with Republicans, giving Republicans control. The chambers that flipped to Democrats were the Colorado Senate, Connecticut Senate, New Hampshire Senate, Minnesota House and Maine Senate. Republicans were successful in flipping the Alaska House of Representatives and will now control both chambers of the state legislature as well as the executive branch.

When state legislatures convene next year, Minnesota will be the only state with a divided legislature, where Republicans will control the Senate and Democrats will control the House. Republicans will control both chambers of the legislature in 30 states, while Democrats will control both in 18 states. Nebraska’s unicameral legislature, although technically nonpartisan, is controlled by ideologically conservative legislators. In 13 states, Democrats will control both the executive and legislative branches. Republicans will control both branches in 21 states, and Nebraska will have a Republican governor.

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