<a href="https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2019/11/bevin-beshear-kentucky-governors-race-blue-state-red-state-the-politics-daily/601576/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">What to Know About Bevin v. Beshear in Kentucky: The Politics Daily</a>  <font color="#6f6f6f">The Atlantic</font>

I looked around for other recent instances of candidates holding their own, in states held by the other party. Our writers explore the complex factors behind these wins:

¶ Ohio was once the quintessential swing state; now it’s swung right. Still, Sherrod Brown keeps on winning as the lone Democrat to be elected to statewide office in many years.

¶ Montana Governor Steve Bullock is putting his winning-in-a-red-state bona fides front and center in his 2020 campaign. (But his message isn’t breaking through much nationally.)

¶ Alabama is as reliably red as states can be. But in 2017, Doug Jones delivered one of the most surprising election results in recent memory, becoming the first Democrat to win a U.S. Senate seat there in 25 years. (Unusual factors were at play.)

¶ The Republican Larry Hogan eked out a surprising win in Maryland’s governor’s race in 2014—and again last year (the year of the so-called “blue wave”) by an even wider margin.



is an associate editor at The Atlantic, where he covers politics and policy.

is an editorial fellow at The Atlantic.