WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on Tuesday’s elections for governor and other state offices (all times local):
Democrats are chipping away at Republican leadership in state capitols by flipping control of at least three gubernatorial offices.
Democrats J.B. Pritzker in Illinois, Gretchen Whitmer in Michigan and Michelle Lujan Grisham in New Mexico won elections Tuesday for seats previously held by Republicans.
Democratic gubernatorial candidates also were putting up strong challenges in the previously Republican-held states of Iowa, Kansas, Wisconsin and South Dakota.
Heading into Tuesday’s elections, Republicans controlled 33 governor’s office and two-thirds of all state legislative chambers. That included 25 states where they held a trifecta of power, compared with just eight for Democrats.
Whitmer’s victory breaks that Republican trifecta in Michigan. The Democratic gubernatorial victories in Illinois and New Mexico could give them trifectas there.
Democrats have taken a firm grip on power in New Mexico by flipping the governor’s office, previously held by a Republican.
Democratic Michelle Lujan Grisham won the governor’s race Tuesday by defeating Republican Steve Pearce in an election that featured two sitting members of Congress.
Heading into Tuesday, Democrats already held majorities in both chambers of the state Legislature. But term-limited Gov. Susana Martinez had held the chief executive’s office for Republicans for the past eight years.
The victory by Lujan Grisham could position Democrats to have full control over the redistricting of congressional and state legislative seats after the 2020 Census.
A woman who during the 2016 presidential election accused Donald Trump of sexually harassing her a decade earlier has lost her bid for a seat in Ohio’s legislature.
Democrat Rachel Crooks lost on Tuesday to incumbent Republican state Rep. Bill Reineke (RY’-nuh-kee) in her first attempt at a public office.
The former Trump Tower receptionist said she met Trump in 2006 when she was 22 and he kissed her “directly on the mouth” against her will. Trump denied the accusations when they first surfaced a month before the 2016 election.
Crooks says she decided to run in Ohio’s Republican-leaning 88th House District partly because she thinks Trump escaped consequences for harassment alleged by her and others.
Republican Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts has won re-election to another term by defeating Democratic state Sen. Bob Krist.
Ricketts’ victory on Tuesday will extend a 20-year run of Republican governors in the conservative state.
Ricketts has pledged to keep pushing for lower taxes and limits on state spending. He will be paired with a state legislative chamber that is officially nonpartisan but also has a majority of Republicans.
Krist was previously a Republican but changed his affiliation after announcing his run for governor.
Rep. Jared Polis has won Colorado’s open gubernatorial seat to keep it under Democratic control.
Polis defeated Republican state Treasurer Walker Stapleton on Tuesday to succeed term-limited Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper. Polis will become Colorado’s first openly gay governor.
He campaigned on universal health, renewable energy standards and publicly funded early childhood education. He also vowed to stand up to President Donald Trump’s efforts to dismantle the federal health care law.
Although often a swing state, Colorado has not had a Republican governor since 2007.
The Kentucky clerk who went to jail in 2015 for refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples has lost her bid for a second term.
Republican incumbent Kim Davis was defeated by Democrat Elwood Caudill Jr. in Tuesday’s election for clerk of Rowan County in northeastern Kentucky.
Caudill is well known in the county. He lost to Davis by just 23 votes in the 2014 Democratic primary. Davis later switched to the GOP.
Davis went from obscure local official to a national figure when she stopped issuing marriage licenses days after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the U.S. Constitution guarantees same-sex couples the right to marry. Davis cited her religious beliefs for her action, saying she was acting under “God’s authority.”
Democrat Gretchen Whitmer has won the Michigan governor’s race to break a Republican power bloc that had been a top target for Democrats.
Whitmer is a former state legislative leader and defeated Republican Attorney General Bill Schuette (SHOO’-tee) in Tuesday’s election. She will succeed term-limited Republican Gov. Rick Snyder.
Republicans had controlled the governor’s office and both chambers of the Michigan Legislature since racking up big victories in the 2010 midterm elections during Democratic President Barack Obama’s tenure. The GOP used that trifecta of power to enact congressional and state legislative maps that favored Republicans.
That made Michigan a top target for national Democrats.
Whitmer’s victory continues a trend of party changes in Michigan. Voters have not elected back-to-back governors of the same party since the 1960s.
Republican businessman Kevin Stitt has won Oklahoma’s open gubernatorial seat.
Stitt defeated former Democratic attorney general Drew Edmondson in Tuesday’s election to replace term-limited Republican Gov. Mary Fallin.
Stitt will be paired with Republican majorities in the Oklahoma House and Senate in the traditionally conservative state.
He won election by casting himself as a businessman who is a political outsider in the mold of President Donald Trump.
Voters in Alabama and South Carolina have chosen to give full terms to a pair of Republican governors who rose to power because of political circumstances.
South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster defeated Democratic state Rep. James Smith on Tuesday to win a four-year term.
McMaster had been elevated from lieutenant governor in 2017 when Gov. Nikki Haley left office to become President Donald Trump’s ambassador to the United Nations.
Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey defeated Democrat Walt Maddox to win a four-year term. Ivey was elevated from lieutenant governor in 2017 when Gov. Robert Bentley resigned amid the fallout from allegations of a relationship with a top aide.
Both Republican governors are paired with Republican majorities in their state legislatures.
A Democrat will be back in charge of Illinois now that billionaire J.B. Pritzker has defeated Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner in one of the nation’s most expensive gubernatorial races ever.
Pritzker put more than $150 million of his own money into the race against Rauner, who also spent tens of millions of dollars of his own wealth.
Pritzker’s victory could restore a solid grip on government for Democrats, who already controlled both chambers of the state Legislature heading into Tuesday’s election. Rauner’s four-year term as governor had interrupted a Democratic trifecta that began in 2003.
If Democrats retain a trifecta after the 2020 elections, they would be in a position to control how boundaries are redrawn for Illinois congressional and state legislative districts after the 2020 Census.
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan has won re-election in what amounts to a pretty historic feat.
Hogan defeated Democrat Ben Jealous on Tuesday to become the first Republican governor to win re-election since 1954 and only the second to do so in the state’s history.
Democrats outnumber Republicans by a 2-1 ratio in Maryland.
But Hogan’s victory ensures Republicans will have a say in the next round of congressional redistricting after the 2020 Census. That’s important for the GOP, because Democrats used their power in the Legislature and governor’s office to draw districts to their advantage after the 2010 Census.
Republicans have held on to governor’s offices in Texas and Wyoming.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott won a second term by defeating Democrat Lupe Valdez in a race whose outcome was seldom in doubt.
In Wyoming, Republican state Treasurer Mark Gordon won election as governor over Democrat Mary Throne. Gordon will succeed term-limited Republican Gov. Matt Mead, who has held the office since 2011.
Republicans also control the legislative chambers in Texas and Wyoming, though Democrats have been trying to chip away at the GOP advantage in Texas.
Democratic Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser has won a second term in office.
Bowser had been favored in the overwhelmingly Democratic District of Columbia. She defeated three challengers.
Bowser has presided over a period of relative prosperity and demographic shifts thanks to rapid gentrification. But her tenure has also been marked by a series of controversies inside the public school system over fraudulent graduation rates. Still Bowser won the Democratic primary in June with no serious opposition.
In another key race, Democratic incumbent Council Chairman Phil Mendelson was re-elected, defeating Libertarian candidate Ethan Bishop-Henchman.
Washington’s non-voting delegate in Congress, Democrat Eleanor Holmes Norton, also secured a 15th term in office.
Democrats have retained the governor’s offices in New York and Pennsylvania.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (KWOH’-moh) defeated Republican Marc Molinaro on Tuesday to win election to a third, four-year term. No Republican has won a gubernatorial race there since 2002.
In Pennsylvania, Gov. Tom Wolf won a second term by turning back Republican challenger Scott Wagner.
Wolf’s victory will ensure Democrats have a role in the next round of congressional redistricting after the 2020 Census.
Redistricting has been a hot topic in Pennsylvania, where the state Supreme Court earlier this year threw out the congressional maps drawn by the Republican-led state Legislature after the 2010 Census. The high court ruled the boundaries were an unconstitutional partisan gerrymander and ordered new districts for this year’s elections.
Republican businessman Bill Lee has won Tennessee’s gubernatorial election over his Democratic challenger, former Nashville Mayor Karl Dean.
Lee’s election Tuesday to a four-year term means Republicans are in a good position to retain their trifecta of power through the next round of congressional and state legislative redistricting after the 2020 census.
Republicans already hold sizeable majorities in both legislative chambers in Tennessee.
Lee will succeed Republican Gov. Bill Haslam, who was barred by term limits from seeking re-election.
The incumbent governors of Arkansas and Rhode Island have won re-election.
Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson defeated Democrat Jared Henderson on Tuesday to ensure another four years in the chief executive’s office for Republicans. The GOP also controls both legislative chambers.
In Rhode Island, Democrat Gov. Gina Raimondo defeated Republican challenger Allan Fung to win a second, four-year term. She will work alongside plenty of fellow Democrats, who hold commanding majorities in both chambers of the state Legislature.
Republican Charlie Baker has won another term as governor in the traditionally Democratic stronghold of Massachusetts.
Baker defeated Democrat Jay Gonzalez on Tuesday following a campaign in which he touted a strong economy and his role in stabilizing a state budget without broad tax increases. Baker is a moderate Republican who has frequently criticized President Donald Trump.
Polls remain open in numerous other states.
Democrats nationwide are trying to chip away at Republican control in many state capitols. The GOP entered Tuesday’s elections holding 33 governor’s offices and two-thirds of the state legislative chambers.
The Massachusetts Legislature is dominated by Democrats. But Baker’s election to a second, four-year term means Republicans will have a say when congressional and state legislative districts are redrawn after the 2020 Census.
Democrats are trying to chip away at Republican control in state Capitols during elections for governor and state legislature.
Tuesday’s elections feature contests for 36 governors’ offices, including headliner races in Florida and Georgia.
In both Deep South states, black candidates would break barriers if they win but face Republicans who are drawing energy from their close alignment with President Donald Trump.
Republicans currently control two-thirds of all legislative chambers and the governor’s office in 33 states. That includes 25 states where they hold a trifecta of power, compared with just eight for Democrats.
National Republican and Democratic groups have poured record amounts of money into this year’s state elections.
© 2018, Forrest Church. All rights reserved.