Utah has not had a Democratic governor in almost 28 years and incumbent Republican Gary Herbert looks likely to continue that trend. Herbert took office in August 2009 when then-Gov. Jon Huntsman resigned to become U.S. Ambassador to China. He won a 2010 special election to complete the rest of Huntsman's term and received 64% of the vote over Peter Corroon, the mayor of Salt Lake County. His Democratic opponent is Peter Cooke, a businessman and retired two-star major general with the U.S. Army Reserves. Utah is solid Republican country, and Herbert is a safe bet for re-election.
Gov. Peter Shumlin (D) vs. Randy Brock (R)
Election Night 2012 should be much less suspenseful for Democratic incumbent Peter Shumlin than it was two years ago. That year, Shumlin narrowly edged his Republican opponent, Brian Dubie, 49% to 48%. Under Vermont law, the state legislature decides the gubernatorial election if no candidate receives a majority of the vote. Shumlin officially won the election in January 2011, though Dubie conceded the race shortly after Election Day. This year, Shumlin is expected to win re-election easily. His Republican opponent is Randy Brock, a state senator.
Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin (D) vs. Bill Maloney (R)
If it feels like just a year ago when Democratic incumbent Earl Ray Tomblin ran against Republican businessman Bill Maloney for the West Virginia governorship, that's because it was. Tomblin took office in late 2010 after his Democratic predecessor Joe Manchin resigned to take over the late Robert Byrd's U.S. Senate seat. A year later, Tomblin won a special election to complete the rest of Manchin's term. He beat Maloney, 50% to 47%. Now, the two face off again for a full term. The major difference now is that 2012 is a presidential election year, and the shadow of President Barck Obama looms even larger over the race than it did a year ago. Republicans, as they did in 2011, hope to link Tomblin with the president, who is unpopular in the Mountain State.