Outlook: Solid Republican
Two-term Governor Jim Douglas is one of those mild-mannered, eminently reasonable, Republican moderates that–like its maple syrup–Vermont used to be famous for. Now it’s better known for producing lefties like Howard Dean, and socialist Congressman Bernie Sanders, and liberals-for-all-causes Ben & Jerry, of ice cream fame.
Still, Douglas sits well with most Vermonters, and he has an incumbent’s edge for a third term. But there are no guarantees for any GOP candidate in this state anymore. Still, now that Douglas has decided not to run for the open U.S. Senate seat of retiring Independent-Democrat-former Republican Jim Jeffords, we suspect that Douglas will be relatively safe (former state senator Scudder Parker is the only Democrat to declare his candidacy at this point), with almost all of the money and attention in Green Mountain State politics being devoted to the Senate contest.