NYT: Blue State GOP Governors Are “Well-Positioned” For Re-Election In November

By embracing bipartisanship and promoting pro-jobs policies that expand opportunity to working families, GOP governors are proving that Republicans can win and govern effectively – even in deep-blue states.

The New York Times reports that GOP governors – including Charlie Baker of Massachusetts, Larry Hogan of Maryland, and Phil Scott of Vermont – are “well-positioned” for re-election this November, with strong approval ratings and clear records of accomplishment – while few Democrats have “stepped up to take on these popular governors.”

Even as they govern some of America’s most traditionally Democrat states as Republicans, these governors continue to receive strong signs of support from across the political spectrum and remain on track for victory in the fall.

The New York Times reports:

“…Republican governors running for re-election in heavily Democratic states…have emerged as well-positioned incumbents who seem likely to survive an expected blue swell in November.

A crucial mix of bipartisanship — which stands in welcome contrast with Washington — aggressively mild temperaments and gentle checks on liberal proclivities have kept moderates and independents happy in their states.

As governor, Mr. Hogan promoted environmental protections for the Chesapeake Bay, shored up the state’s insurance markets and openly fought his own cancer as he worked. He recently pulled back his state’s National Guard troops from the border in protest of the administration’s policy of separating migrant children from their families. He lowered bridge tolls and some taxes that pleased voters in his heavily taxed state. Almost half of his cabinet members are Democrats.

‘I always did exactly what I said I’m going to do,’ Mr. Hogan said in a recent interview here as we hid from rain under the slats of an under-construction opioid treatment center. ‘On every issue, I’ve never said, ‘What’s the Republican answer? What’s the Democratic answer?’ I listen to both sides. I don’t care whose idea it is.’

Gov. Charlie Baker of Massachusetts, whose popularity in his state rivals that of fried clams, has worked closely with the Democrat-controlled legislature to increase the minimum wage and create a paid family and medical leave program. Gov. Phil Scott of Vermont has defended the Affordable Care Act, and he has supported free trade in a state that does a lot of business with Canada…

‘Three of the five most popular governors are Republicans in blue states,’ said Jennifer E. Duffy, senior editor for The Cook Political Report. ‘These are governors who have largely proven that they are more in sync with the voters in those states, and what they want and need, than what their party wants from them.’…

Nor have many Democrats stepped up to take on these popular governors. ‘We should not neglect the fact that the Democrats running are pretty weak,’ said Dan Payne, a Democratic strategist in Massachusetts, where a Democratic primary next month will determine who will take on Mr. Baker…”