November 23rd, 2009
09:10 AM ET
5 years ago

Republicans bullish on 2010 governor's races

Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour is the chairman of the Republican Governors Association.
Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour is the chairman of the Republican Governors Association.

Washington (CNN) – In the early days of his campaign for governor in Virginia, Republican Bob McDonnell hired veteran GOP pollster Glen Bolger to take the pulse of the state's notoriously independent-minded voters.

Bolger asked voters if they'd rather elect of governor who would work with President Obama to implement his plans for the economy, or a governor who would serve as a check on Democrats in Washington.

Fifty-five percent wanted a governor who planned to stand up the president, Bolger discovered, while just 35 percent desired someone who would help the White House. It wasn't what he'd expected to find.

"I was kind surprised by that result, because I thought people would say that's not really a factor in the governor's race," Bolger said, noting that McDonnell won the race by a similar margin. "But people saw it as almost like Democrats are oversteering too much in one direction, and they wanted correction."

After dismal election cycles in 2006 and 2008, Republicans are hoping that signs of discomfort with President Obama's agenda will translate into big gains in governor's mansions around the country next November. They point to off-year wins this month in Virginia and New Jersey as early proof that a backlash against Democratic overreach in Washington is underway.

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Filed under: 2010 • Bob McDonnell • DGA • Haley Barbour • RGA
soundoff (22 Responses)
  1. diridi

    these are local elections based on local needs......it is nothing to do with national problems....lot of people are suffering with economy, and health care....we need to pass health care with public option....it appeases people...pres. obama, you are great...go for health care...

    November 23, 2009 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  2. as in Wall Street Bullish?

    a funny reference given that we are in recession that came about by GOP incompetence

    you all are going down, down in flames

    If the U.S. populace has any memory at all they will never vote you sad incompetents in again

    November 23, 2009 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  3. JonDie

    They should be bullish.

    If Bob McDonnell, a fanatical religious extremist who shares Pat Robertson's beliefs (including that the Americans who were murdered by Al Qaeda on 9-11 deserved to die) can be elected governor, literally anything is possible.

    We just escaped a second Great Depression thanks to Republicans...and after only one year Americans seem ready to return to the dark days of November 2008.

    In fact, it would have been better for the country had we gone into a Great Depression... since most Americans just don't have to the mental capacity otherwise to understand how REPUBLICANS are destroying this country.

    We will end up on the trash heap of history...just like the Soviet Union...and sooner than we think.

    November 23, 2009 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  4. W l Jones

    We give both our Senators an Congresspersons a lot of lip on most every subject but enbeded in there scrutiny for our country they are some of the smartest politican in the world. Brunswich.maine for an example what the Navy durning before they leave on the Air Base for that community.

    November 23, 2009 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  5. Right wingnuts are the darlings of dementia

    As the economy is turning around, republicans will always have the Palin "Bus to Nowhere Tour" to reflect on, but that is about all.

    November 23, 2009 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  6. That's why......

    even if Obamacare and its death panels become law, it will be overturned in 2010 when Americans vote the socialists OUT.

    November 23, 2009 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  7. haren

    If public mind can change about Obama in 9 month than there is every possibility it can change back again in next 12 months.
    Don't be bullish on anything.
    Economy is going to improve,unemployment will go down,health care bill will be passed and Iraq war will be over.
    It will be land slide by democrats.
    BECAUSE REPUBLICAN ARE AGAIN ON WRONG SIDE.

    November 23, 2009 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  8. Donkey Party

    What a joke the GOP is. Why do they despise the American people so much? I hope they all die painfully miserable deaths from ailments their insurance won't cover.

    November 23, 2009 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  9. Marv

    Its all about race iit has nothing to do about his abilities.White people are beginning to feel comfortable about being called a racist, its coming out more now. I dont care how many Reps get in office its not going to change anything white people want this country to be like it was 60 years ago but it wont. The next step is to bar all black athletics from from sports teams in america. I hope sarah palin is the next president and joe the plumber is the vice president thats what you people want. God help us.

    November 23, 2009 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  10. bcords

    have no fear. michael steele will run them in to the ground like everything else he has touched!!!

    November 23, 2009 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  11. Clint

    GOP- keep whistling in the dark. The steering that the Obama administration is doing is called leadership, something you would not recognize, and is being done to steer this country out of the ditch after eight years of wild war spending by Bush/Cheney that has nearly bankrupted this country. Don't underestimate the American people.

    November 23, 2009 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  12. Bluebonnet

    Didn't take long for people to smarten up – just too bad they didn't BEFORE the elections!

    November 23, 2009 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  13. Pee Wee

    "But people saw it as almost like Democrats are oversteering too much in one direction, and they wanted correction."

    Agreed, from my vantage point, the change that Obama touted on the campaign trail (which I think he's still on) was more geared toward getting lobbyists and cronyism out of Washington. He spoke of lofty ideals of eliminating pork, being transparent and fiscal responsibility. What we've seen are cabinet level positions manned by tax evaders, advisors espousing "social justice" and singing the praises of chairman Mao, and incredible fiscal irresponsibility.

    I believe his intentions are good and he thinks that government is the answer to every problem. Unfortunately, he ran as a centrist and pulled the bait-and-switch. America is basically a center-right country and leftist community organizing union sympathetic policies don't cut it on the national stage.

    November 23, 2009 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  14. FALSE NEWS...not really the news .. just propaganda from hate mongers to the no brainers

    "I was kind surprised by that result..." – Bolger
    "But people saw it as almost like..." – veteran GOP pollster Glen Bolger

    veteran GOP pollster?! Who is this woman...Brittany Spears?

    BTW, more errors....see ""I was kind surprised by that result..."...

    I thought I was reading FALSE NEWS!

    But for this article, CNN top FAUX NEWS in giving this woman and of course this dimwitted writer, a platform to hammer us with Palinsque English!...But why not? CNN thought we are all unintelligent Republiklans who can't read between the lines!

    November 23, 2009 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  15. Terry from West Texas

    Americans are cautious. When they elect someone to solve the nation's problems, they then elect someone else who will prevent the first guy from doing what he was elected to do. Americans have a dysfunctional, Solomonic, "split-the-difference" wisdom.

    Let's say that training a pilot costs $10,000, half to teach him to take off and half to teach him to land. Many Americans would cut pilot training to $5,000, figuring that a compromise is always best. Each pilot could decide whether he wanted to learn how to take off or how to land.

    It makes no sense to elect a president to solve the nation's problems and then elect others who will prevent him from doing so. It does not correct the political process, it just stops the nation from solving its problems.

    November 23, 2009 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  16. W Spivey

    REJOICE AMERICA, we have a week vacation away from the 535 comedians in Congress.

    November 23, 2009 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  17. strong

    Who cares anymore ??

    American is leary and weary of anything political. It's all a game, with the average American getting scr....ed.

    November 23, 2009 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  18. Sandra, Atlanta

    The American people would do well to remember what they actually received under Republicans rule versus their whining and fear mongering today. Handouts to the rich, corruption, and scandals. My memory is a bit longer apparently. Republicans actually treated Democrats far worse than the Democrats are treating them. However, do Republicans think that just being the party of "No' and focusing on scoring political points rather than getting in there and solving problems might actually make people think better of them?

    November 23, 2009 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  19. gary

    As always your stories are slanted towards the republican point of view. CNN anchors do not even try to hide their distain for president Obama any more. The network of negative , slanted reporting.

    November 23, 2009 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  20. katiec

    It is welcome to see that 35% of republicans are disgusted with the action of their party. They need to speak up and let their party know that the survial of our country is more important than the irresponsible political games the party of NOthing is playing.
    The GOP is taking even more rigid steps, campaigining against those in their own party who are not in total agreement with their radical, extremists actions.
    Hopefully, they will self destruct.

    November 23, 2009 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  21. kmp

    Seriously now really. While I am a democrat who supports Obama, but I think we all want someone in office who is independent and has their own mind. Plus I would be interested to see what area independents they polled.

    I think they should stop worrying about ideologial differences in Washington and worry about the problems that they face in Virgina. Because I will tell you nothing would frustate me more than a governor who is focused more on Washington than he is on his own state.

    November 23, 2009 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  22. Tiffany

    Did I hear this right, Gov. Barbour of Mississippi is trying to close three colleges in his state where mostly african americans attend?
    Here we go again with the "SOUTH!"

    November 23, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |