How the Deeds-Obama fallout affects open-seat governor’s races

The North Shore Exponent in a two-part series is examining the impact of Creigh Deeds being thrown under the bus by President Barack Obama over his campaign for Virginia Governor.  This part examines how states with open seat governor’s elections are affected.

Since Last Friday’s front-page article in The Washington Post that denoted Virginia Democratic Gubernatorial nominee Creigh Deeds was thrown under the bus by Team Obama, this impact can linger to states that have a open-seat Governor’s race.  The race for Virginia Governor was a open seat race after Tim Kaine was term-limited under Virginia law.  In 2010,  19 of the 39 governor’s races in 2010 will be open-seat races.  When looking at the 19 seats that are open, 10 of them were carried by Barack Obama in 2008.

The impact of the Deeds-Obama fallout will come down to one key factor, the level of involvement the White House will be involved in picking who will be on the ballot in these 19 states.  As it was reported by Obama Administration officials that they chided Deeds over not fully utilizing the resources of the White House, you can bet that the White House’s blessing will come first before the desires of state party chairmen in the  critical 19 states on who to put in the ballot.

A key factor to look at is the approval rating of the President in key states like Michigan, Pennsylvania, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Kansas, and Minnesota.  In a handful of these states, the President’s approval rating is below fifty percent.  You can expect the Obama Administration to be highly involved in these states so they can try to boost their approval rating numbers where they are lacking.  During the Virginia Governor’s race, a key factor that Creigh Deeds battled along with his lackluster campaigning style is Obama’s approval rating being one of the lowest in the country according to SurveyUSA.

Also, in some of these critical states that the Obama Administration will have greater involvement is states with very high unemployment rates.  One example is Michigan with its unemployment rate  at over 15 percent.  However, the leading Democratic challenger in Michigan, Lt. Governor John Cherry is not polling well against current Congressman Pete Hoekstra or Attorney General Mike Cox.  When looking at a Mike Cox v. John Cherry matchup, an October 21st poll showed the Lieutenant Governor down fifteen points.   Also, you can look at Team Obama putting resources into California, Nevada, Oregon, and Rhode Island in which they all carried for Obama in 2008.  However, these four states are in the top ten in the nation for unemployment rates along with Michigan. With how sketpical voters are growing about the Stimulus and with unemployment expected to stay above ten percent next year nationwide, these are governor’s seats Team Obama cannot afford to lose.

Basically, to throw Creigh Deeds under the bus in Virginia shows that the Democrats are running nervous.  In the 19 states that governor’s races are open seats, the Obama Administration will exercise the most control in who gets on the ballot and how the campaigns are managed.  In simple terms, Rahm Emanuel and Barack Obama are calling the shots.  This may motovaite Republican, independent, and disaffected Democrat voters to vote against Obama in 2010.

This explains how the Deeds-Obama fallout has nationwide implications across the US in 2010.  Lastly, don’t forget to join the North Shore Exponent for its coverage of the New Jersey and Virginia Governor’s elections and the NY-23 special congressional election on November 3rd.  Election coverage begins at 6:30 PM-EDT/5:30 PM-CDT, one half hour before the polls close in Virginia at 7PM-EDT.  We will be on until we have winners in the key races, so please join us.


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