Many gubernatorial elections are on the 2022 midterm election ballot, with 36 states and three territories electing top executives. In 2022, Republicans are defending 20 governorships, while Democrats are defending 16.
2022 Midterm Election Toss-Up Gubernatorial Races
As of November 3, 2022, five governor races in Arizona, Kansas, Nevada, Oregon, and Wisconsin are considered toss-ups.
Due to term limits, Arizona Governor Doug Ducey (R) could not run for re-election. The 2022 Arizona gubernatorial candidates are Kari Lake (R), a former news anchor, and Katie Hobbs (D), Arizona’s Secretary of State and former state senate minority leader. Real Clear Politics (RCP) projects Lake to win the seat, with an average 3.8% lead over Hobbs. The Cook Political Report and Sabato’s Crystal Ball rate the race as a toss-up.
In Kansas, incumbent Governor Laura Kelly (D) is running for re-election against State Attorney General Derek Schmidt (R). Kansas is the only Democratic-held governor’s race on the ballot this year in a state won by Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election. Kelly won her first election in 2018 with 48% of the vote. Kris Kobach (R) received 43% of the vote, and Independent John Doll received 6.5%. The only poll listed by RCP from September showed Kelly with a two-point lead. The Cook Political Report and Sabato’s Crystal Ball rate the race as a toss-up.
Nevada’s gubernatorial election pits incumbent Governor Steve Sisolak (D) against Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo (R). The RCP polling average has Lombardo up 2.4% over Sisolak and projects Lombardo to pick up the seat. The Cook Political Report and Sabato’s Crystal Ball also rate the race as a toss-up.
In Oregon, incumbent Governor Kate Brown (D) is term-limited and cannot run for re-election. The three most notable candidates running to replace Brown are former state lawmakers Tina Kotek (D), Christine Drazan (R), and Betsy Johnson (I). The RCP polling average has Drazan up 1.7% over Kotek, with Johnson in third place, and projects Drazan to win the seat. The last Republican governor of Oregon was Victor Atiyeh, who was first elected in 1978 and served through 1987. The Cook Political Report and Sabato’s Crystal Ball also rate the race as a toss-up.
Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers (D) is running for re-election against Tim Michels (R). The RCP polling average has Evers with a 0.5% lead over Michels but projects Michels to win the seat. The Cook Political Report and Sabato’s Crystal Ball also rate the race as a toss-up.
Other Notable Races in the 2022 Midterm Election
Massachusetts and Maryland have Republican governors, Charlie Baker (MA) and Larry Hogan (MD). However, Baker and Hogan are not running, and Democrats—Wes Moore (MD) and Maura Healey (MD)—are expected to prevail in both elections.
Additionally, recent polls have shown incumbent Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt (R) down to Joy Hofmeister (D), incumbent New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) with a narrowing lead over Mark Ronchetti (R), and incumbent Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer (D) with a narrowing lead over Tudor Dixon (R).
Stay In Touch