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State Election Outlook—A Look at Some Key State Races that Impact NEMA


10/5/2012 4:00PM

State Election Results Affecting Electroindustry Policy

Deana M. Dennis, Manager, State Government Relations

As a follow up to the article that appeared in the October edition of ei (“State Elections Affect Electroindustry Policies”), here are the results for the bigger-picture state races across the country and those that have a direct impact on NEMA’s activities.

GOVERNORS

With 11 gubernatorial seats on the ballot this year, four are now held by Republicans and seven by Democrats. Overall, 30 states are now held by Republicans, 19 by Democrats, and one Independent. More results.

LEGISLATURES

This year, 86 of 99 state legislative chambers were up for election. Prior to the election, 59 chambers were held by Republicans, 36 by Democrats, three were ties, and one was non-partisan unicameral.

After November 6, 56 chambers are held by Republicans (loss of three), 40 by Democrats (gain of four), one a tie (Virginia), one non-partisan unicameral (Nebraska), and one undecided (New York). Forty-five states are controlled by one party—26 Republicans and 19 Democrats. More results.

Three important states to NEMA that flipped one or both chambers are Maine, Minnesota, and Oregon. In both Maine and Minnesota, Republicans controlled both chambers prior to the election; today, the Democrats control both.

In Oregon, the House was tied; today it is controlled by Democrats. Another notable double-flip state is Arkansas, a state where Democrats have controlled both chambers since the 1800s. Other states with one chamber flip are: Alaska (Senate to Republicans); Colorado (House to Democrats); New Hampshire (House to Democrats); New York (Senate to Democrats); and Wisconsin (Senate to Republicans).

BALLOT INITIATIVES—California Prop. 39

On November 6, voters in 38 states considered 174 statewide ballot measures. Of importance to NEMA is California Proposition 39 which was approved by voters on Election Day.

Prop. 39, otherwise known as California Tax Treatment for Multistate Businesses—Clean Energy and Energy Efficiency Funding—Initiative Statute, will require multistate businesses to pay income tax based on the percentage of their sales in California.

It also repeals the option to choose a tax liability formula. The measure will dedicate half of the expected $1 billion revenue for funding projects that create energy efficiency and clean energy jobs, called the Clean Energy Job Creation Fund, for five years. The other half of revenue will be put into the state’s general fund.

The Clean Energy Job Creation Fund will support projects intended to improve energy efficiency and expand the use of clean energy.

The fund will be used toward:

  • energy efficiency retrofits and alternative energy projects in public schools, colleges/universities, and other public institutions
  • financial and technical assistance for energy retrofits
  • job training and workforce development programs

The Legislature will determine appropriations and will be required to ensure funding goes to cost-effective projects run by the state agencies with expertise in managing such energy projects, including the California Energy Commission and the Public Utilities Commission. All funded projects must be coordinated with them.

The measure will also create a new nine-member oversight board to annually review and evaluate appropriations of the fund. More results.

KEY STATE RACES – RESULTS:

California

Outlook: Assembly & Senate—Stays the Same

All 80 members of the Assembly are up for election this year, while only half of the 40-member Senate is up. The state legislative primary election was held June 5 and marked the first time the Top Two Candidate Open Primary Act was in effect. This resulted in 18 Assembly and two Senate races where both candidates were from the same political party. Both chambers are strongly controlled by Democrats and are expected to remain the same.

RESULTS: BOTH CHAMBERS STAYED IN DEMOCRATIC CONTROL

Colorado

Outlook: House—Potential Flip

The Colorado House will be the chamber to watch. Currently, it is composed of 65 members and held by Republicans by a mere margin of one. Of all 38 incumbents seeking re-election, none are running unopposed, which means a potential switch in party control is not off the table. A Democratically-controlled House would give Democrats complete control of the legislature and the Governor’s seat.

RESULTS: HOUSE FLIPPED FROM REPUBLICAN TO DEMOCRATIC CONTROL

Delaware

Outlook: Governor—Solid D

Democratic Gov. Jack Markell is seeking a second term. He faces Republican challenger Jeff Cragg, business owner and corporate executive. It is expected that Markell will retain the seat.

RESULTS: DEMOCRATIC INCUMBENT GOVERNOR JACK MARKELL RETAINED HIS SEAT

Indiana

Outlook: Governor—Likely R

Republican nominee and U.S. Rep. Mike Pence runs against Democratic nominee and House Speaker John Gregg. It is likely that Pence will win.

RESULTS: REPUBLICAN MIKE PENCE WINS GUBERNATORIAL RACE

Outlook: House & Senate—Stronger Majorities

All 100 members of the House of Representatives and half of the 50-member Senate will be up for election this year. In the House, 14 Democrats are running unopposed compared to 23 Republicans. In the Senate, the numbers are similar with four Democrats and six Republicans running unopposed. There is a strong possibility that Republicans will attain supermajorities in both chambers.

RESULTS: BOTH CHAMBERS INCREASED THEIR REPUBLICAN MAJORITIES

Iowa

Outlook: Senate—Potential Flip

The Iowa Senate will be the chamber to watch as it is currently controlled by Democrats by only a margin of two. The 2010 election cycle brought a resounding Republican victory to the state—giving the House a majority of 20 (60-40) in addition to the governor’s mansion. It is possible to see a Senate flip to Republican control.

RESULTS: SENATE REMAINS IN DEMOCRATIC CONTROL

Maine

Outlook: House & Senate—Potential Flip

Both chambers of the Maine legislature are ones to watch as they are controlled by Republicans by only small-moderate margins. The 2010 election cycle brought a conservative Republican wave to Maine’s state offices, which means that the Republicans have more to lose. Don’t count out the possibility that one or both chambers flip to slight Democratic control.

RESULTS: BOTH CHAMBERS FLIPPED TO DEMOCRATIC CONTROL

Massachusetts

Outlook: House & Senate—Stays the Same

Both chambers are strongly held by Democrats. All 160 members of the House of Representatives and all 40 members of the Senate will be up for election this year. After the legislative primary of September 6, 94 Democrats run unopposed in the House and 23 in the Senate, therefore a switch in party control in either chamber is highly unlikely.

REUSLTS: BOTH CHAMBERS STAYED IN DEMOCRATIC CONTROL

Michigan

Outlook: House—Weakened Majority

All of the 110-member House chamber will be up for election this year, while none of the 38-member Senate chamber will be. Republicans currently control both chambers by comfortable majorities. While it is possible that the Democrats could make some in-roads in the House, it would be unlikely to see the chamber flip.

RESULTS: REPUBLICAN-CONTROLLED HOUSE LOST FOUR SEATS BUT STILL RETAINS CONTROL OF THE CHAMBER

Minnesota

Outlook: House & Senate—Potential Flip

All 201 members of the House and Senate will be up for election this year. Republicans currently hold control of both chambers by moderate margins; however, new redistricting maps could give the advantage to the Democratic-Farmer-Laborers party, so don’t discount the possibility for a flip in one or even both chambers.

RESULTS: BOTH CHAMBERS FLIPPED TO DEMOCRATIC CONTROL

Missouri

Outlook: Governor—Lean D

Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon is seeking a second term. He faces Republican opponent Dave Spence, corporate executive and entrepreneur. It is more likely that Nixon will retain the seat.

RESULTS: DEMOCRATIC INCUMBENT GOVERNOR JAY NIXON RETAINED HIS SEAT

Montana

Outlook: Governor—Tossup

Democratic nominee and Attorney General Steve Bullock takes on Republican nominee and former U.S. Rep. Rick Hill. Recent polling shows that this race is very close, making it one of three listed as a Tossup.

RESULTS: DEMOCRAT STEVE BULLOCK WINS GUBERNATORIAL RACE

New Hampshire

Outlook: Governor—Tossup

This election marks the first open race in a decade. With the September 11 state primary past, GOP nominee Ovide Lamontagne and Democratic nominee Maggie Hassan have only 7 weeks to campaign until the general election. This race is one of three listed as a Tossup.

RESULTS: DEMOCRAT MAGGIE HASSAN WINS GUBERNATORIAL RACE

Outlook: House & Senate—Weakened Majorities

Thanks to the 2010 election, Republicans enjoy supermajorities in the House of Representatives (294–103) and the Senate (19–5). With all 424 House and Senate legislative offices up for election this year—coupled with the first open gubernatorial race in a decade and the presidential race—New Hampshire will surely be an important state to watch. It is likely that the Republicans will lose some legislative seats but will maintain control of both chambers.

RESULTS: HOUSE FLIPPED TO DEMOCRATIC CONTROL; SENATE HELD BY SLIM MAJORITY BY REPUBLICANS

New York

Outlook: Assembly & Senate—Stays the Same

All 212 Assembly and Senate legislative offices are up for election this year. Currently, the Assembly is controlled by Democrats while the Republicans maintain a 4-seat margin in the Senate. Note after the 2012 election, the Senate will be composed of 63 members due to the creation of an additional seat by Republicans following the 2010 census. This seat is expected to favor the Republican candidate. The outlook is that both chambers will remain in their respective party’s control.

RESULTS: TWO SENATE SEATS STILL IN RECOUNT AND LIKELY WILL GO TO DEMOCRATS GIVING THEM CONTROL OF THE CHAMBER; HOWEVER, THE FIVE-MEMBER INDEPENDENT DEMOCRATIC CONFERENCE RECENTLY ANNOUNCED A “POWER-SHARING AGREEMENT” WHICH COULD ALLOW A ROTATING SENATE PRESIDENCY AND EQUAL CONTROL OVER COMMITTEE ASSIGNMENTS AND OTHER KEY FUNCTIONS OF THE CHAMBER.

STAY TUNED FOR A FUTHER UPDATE ON THE NEW YORK SENATE.

North Carolina

Outlook: Governor—Lean R

Democratic nominee and former Lt. Gov. and Senator Walter Dalton will take on GOP nominee and former Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory. Currently, the race is leaning toward the Republican candidate.

RESULTS: REPUBLICAN PAT MCCRORY WINS GUBERNATORIAL RACE

North Dakota

Outlook: Governor—Solid R

Republican Gov. Jack Dalrymple is seeking a first full-term. As former Lt. Gov., he was placed into the Governor’s office in December 2010 when then-Gov. John Hoeven was elected to the U.S. Senate. Dalrymple faces Democratic opponent and Senate Minority Leader Ryan Taylor, but it is expected that Dalrymple will handily retain the seat.

RESULTS: REPUBLICAN INCUMBENT GOVERNOR JACK DALRYMPLE RETAINED HIS SEAT

Oregon

Outlook: House—Potential Flip

All 60 members of the House of Representatives and half of the 30-member Senate will be up for election this year. Currently, Democrats hold a two-seat margin in the Senate, while the House is tied. Democrats will likely retain control of the Senate and possibly take control of the House.

RESULTS: DEMOCRATS WIN CONTROL OF HOUSE

Pennsylvania

Outlook: House & Senate—Stays the Same

All 203 members of the House of Representatives and half of the 50-member Senate will be up for election this year. Currently, Republicans hold a majority in the House by a margin of 20 seats, and a majority in the Senate by eight seats. It is likely that both chambers will be retained by Republicans.

RESULTS: BOTH CHAMBERS REMAIN IN REPUBLICAN CONTROL; DEMOCRATS GAIN TWO EACH IN BOTH CHAMBERS

Utah

Outlook: Governor—Solid R

Republican Gov. Gary Herbert is seeking a second term. He faces Democratic opponent and retired Major General in the U.S. Army Reserves Peter Cooke. It is expected that Herbert will retain the seat.

RESULTS: REPUBLICAN INCUMBENT GOVERNOR GARY HERBERT RETAINED HIS SEAT

Vermont

Outlook: Governor—Solid D

Democratic Gov. Peter Shumlin is seeking a second term. Shumlin was first elected in 2010 and represented one of the closest gubernatorial races in the country that cycle. Shumlin is challenged by Republican nominee Senator Randy Brock. It is expected that Shumlin will handily retain the seat.

RESULTS: DEMOCRATIC INCUMBENT GOVERNOR PETER SHUMLIN RETAINED HIS SEAT

Washington

Outlook: Governor—Tossup

With the Aug. 7 primary behind, Democratic nominee and former U.S. Rep. Jay Inslee faces Republican nominee and state Attorney General Rob McKenna. Inslee and McKenna are polling neck and neck which makes this race one of three listed as a Tossup.

RESULTS: DEMOCRAT JAY INSLEE WINS GUBERNATORIAL RACE

West Virginia

Outlook: Governor—Lean D

Democratic Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin is seeking a first full term. He was originally elected in a special election in October 2011 to finish out the unexpired term of then-Gov. Joe Manchin, who resigned to run for the U.S. Senate. Tomblin faces GOP nominee and corporate executive Bill Maloney. Tomblin will probably retain the seat.

RESULTS: DEMOCRATIC INCUMBENT GOVERNOR EARL RAY TOMBLIN RETAINED HIS SEAT

Wisconsin

Outlook: Senate—Potential Flip

After the historic recall election which brought the governor, lieutenant governor, and four senators back to the gauntlet, all but one senator retained his/her seat, giving Democrats control of the Senate by one. This year, 16 of the 33-member Senate are up for election and it is very possible that the Republicans will regain the majority in the Senate.

RESULTS: SENATE FLIPPED TO REPUBLICAN CONTROL