It’s going to be hard to make a case that today’s results are going to represent some sort of foreshadowing of what may happen in next year’s midterm elections. But for the political junkie there are still some things to watch:
Virginia: As noted in last week’s post about Virgina, every gubernatorial winner since 1977 has been from the opposite party of the guy residing in the White House. Right now, Democrats are favored to win the governorship (with Terry McAuliffe) and the lt. gov. spot (with Ralph Northam). If the Dem candidate for attorney general, Mark Herring, wins as well, it will be the first time since 1989 that they swept all three posts in the Old Dominion (Douglas Wilder, Donald Beyer and Mary Sue Terry, respectively).
New Jersey: Gov. Chris Christie is looking for a landslide victory over his Democratic opponent, Barbara Buono, and polls indicate he’ll get it. But will he approach the 70.3% Thomas Kean (R) received in his 1985 re-election bid? That’s the best total for any N.J. governor, regardless of party. And Kean brought in a Republican majority in the state Assembly, the first time that happened in 12 years. Christie’s coattails may not be that large.
New York City: Polls show Bill de Blasio (D) with a huge lead over Republican Joe Lhota in the race to succeed term-limited Mayor Michael Bloomberg (I). He may not approach Ed Koch’s landslide victories of 1981 (75% with no GOP opposition) or 1985 (also 75%-plus). A more realistic target: Jimmy Walker’s 66% in 1925 is the best showing in a NYC mayoral election by a non-incumbent.
Detroit: Roman Gribbs, who served just one term, may be best remembered in the history books as the city’s last white mayor. Since that 1969 election, every mayor elected in Detroit has been African-American: Coleman Young, Dennis Archer, Kwame Kilpatrick and Dave Bing. But that streak could end today, as Mike Duggan, the former head of the Detroit Medical Center, has had a continuous lead in the polls.