About a month ago, I posted my 2018 Gubernatorial Predictions. However, the midterms have gotten a lot closer since then, and the original predictions were flawed. I didn’t account for popularity or ideals; for example, many Republican governors in the Northeast are liberal. Here are my updated predictions. I’ll be using the same formula explained in the first post, but with updated data and fundamental changes.
Since my original post, Trump has gained in popularity and Republicans have gained in the generic ballot polls. If we used Trump’s current disapproval lean of 12.7, and the current Democrat lean in the generic ballot of 6.9, we’d get this map:
This map looks great for Republicans, as they already have 23 seats with 9 tossups. Democrats are clearly fighting an uphill battle in the Gubernatorial races, but we still haven’t accounted for popularity and ideals.
After taking the raw data map, I’m going to change certain seats based on the popularity of the incumbent and their ideals.
For the Republicans, I’m changing Maryland, Vermont, and New Hampshire to lean Republican. All of these Governors are popular among Democrats and are somewhat liberal. This doesn’t mean Democrats don’t have a chance – they do, but it seems more likely that the Republican will win. Next, I’m moving Idaho and Oklahoma to safe Republican. It seems highly unlikely that a Democrat will even make these races close, even if Democrats perform well overall in the midterms. Finally, I’m changing Rhode Island and Connecticut to only lean Democrat. Again, Republicans running are moderate and have a strong chance of pulling off an upset. However, both states have a Democratic incumbent, giving them the advantage.
For the Democrats, I’m immediately making Nevada a tossup. A state that went to Hillary Clinton is definitely not safe Republican, especially in a race where the Republican is a conservative and the Democrat is (most likely) a liberal. Next, I’m moving Arizona to only lean Republican. Arizona is becoming a swing state, and this change mirrors that. After Arizona, I’m moving New Mexico and Maine to lean Democrat. Both of these states favor Democrats, and the map should show that. Finally, I’m moving Iowa and Texas to likely Republican. These states are considered tossups (yes, Texas is becoming a tossup), and they are definitely not guaranteed Republican seats.
Finally, I’m changing Alaska to lean Independent. With the votes of most Democrats and a substantial amount of Republicans, Bill Walker is favored to win reelection.
With all of these changes, this is our final map, with 25 Republicans, 1 Independent, 19 Democrats, and 5 tossups: