National Governors Association

Governors Meet, Bring Baggage From Home With Them

Governors on both sides of the aisle face scandals and dicey re-election campaigns as they gather for an annual winter meeting in Washington.

By John O'Connor | February 23, 2014

Typically when governors gather for their annual winter meeting in the nation's capital, it's a time to tout the work they've done in their states, talk about their party's chances in upcoming elections and prop themselves up as more functional than their counterparts in Washington. (Via Fox News)

This year, though, it's a little more complicated than that. 

Many governors find themselves in trouble back home with investigations, scandals or too-close-to-call re-election campaigns. (Via C-SPAN)

Most notably, two of the Republican party's brightest stars: New Jersey's Chris Christie and Wisconsin's Scott Walker — who now face national media scrutiny relating to scandals and investigations. (Via New Jersey Star-Ledger, The Wisconsin State Journal)

Christie, once considered a frontrunner for the GOP's 2016 presidential nomination, is keeping a low profile at the National Governors Association gathering this weekend — (Via ABC)

— not speaking with the press and skipping traditional NGA events despite being the Republican Governors Association's chairman. (Via Politico

His actions might have something to do with the ongoing investigation back home regarding his involvement in the George Washington Bridge traffic scandal. (Via CNN)

But while Christie's avoiding the limelight, Walker, another 2016 presidential hopeful, is taking a different approach. As Time puts it: "nonchalantly" stopping to answer reporters questions at events.  

"[Walker's] conveying a ‘nothing to see here’ message" regarding a trove of emails released last week detailing his communications with former political aides — six of whom were convicted of criminal wrongdoing in 2012 for illegal campaign activities. 

Walker told The Washington Post: â€‹“This is an old news story ... Many of the ones that have been highlighted of late have actually been in the[Milwaukee] Journal-Sentinel and other places several years ago.”

But it's not just White House bids at stake, Republican and Democratic governors alike are facing the possibility of losing their jobs in the fall elections. 

​Twenty-two Republicans seats are on the ballot for 2014, including 14 open or competitive seats, with nine of those governors defending seats in states President Obama carried in 2012. Democrats, meanwhile, are defending 14 seats, including 10 deemed competitive or open. (Via MSNBC)

NBC looks some of the states most likely to see the governor's office flip from red to blue and vice-versa in 2014. 

"For instance ... just 30 percent of Illinois voters approving of Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn’s job ... Republican Gov. Rick Scott [trails] likely Democratic challenger Charlie Crist by 8 points. And ... a majority of Pennsylvanians [say] that GOP Gov. Tom Corbett doesn’t deserve re-election."

It's not all doom-and-gloom for the governors though. Not a single governor's approval rating is lower than that of Congress, which currently hovers at around 12 percent. 

  TRENDING IN Politics NEWS
Henry Kissinger has a very complicated legacy, so could Hillary Clinton's relationship with him be a real issue during the campaign?WATCHLIST
Getty Images

Clinton's Relationship With Kissinger Could Underline Her Hawkishness

More and more members of Congress are registering to become lobbyists. Why?WATCHLIST
 

Half Of Retiring Senators Are Registering As Lobbyists

Gilmore's name wasn't even offered as a choice on some polls.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Darren McCollester

Jim Gilmore Drops Out Of Presidential Race

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump greets people as he attends a campaign rally at the Sioux City Orpheum Theatre on January 31, 2016 in Sioux City, Iowa.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Joe Raedle

Polls Give Donald Trump Huge Advantage Going Into South Carolina

Screenshot from Ted Cruz's ad that featured an adult film actress.WATCHLIST
Cruz for President

Cruz Campaign Had No Idea A Former Adult Film Actress Was In Its Ad

Richard DreyfussWATCHLIST
Getty Images / Stuart C. Wilson

Why Did Democrat Richard Dreyfuss Go To A Ted Cruz Rally?

Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders participates in the PBS NewsHour Democratic presidential candidate debate at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee on February 11, 2016 in Milwaukee, WisconsinWATCHLIST
Getty Images / Win McNamee

The Numbers Behind Sanders' Claim About African-Americans And Weed

Bernie Sanders and President Barack ObamaWATCHLIST
Getty Images / Alex Wong

Here's What Bernie Sanders Has Said About Challenging Obama

Hillary Clinton is trying to use Sen. Bernie Sanders' connections with the DSCC against him.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Win McNamee

Is Sanders Taking Wall Street Cash Through The DSCC?

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (R) listens to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov during a press conference following a meeting of the International Syrian Support Group.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Alexandra Beier

World Powers Try To Work Out Pause In Syrian Fighting

The Democratic fight over the very important black vote is getting pretty serious as the presidential primary moves south.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Justin Sullivan

Clinton And Sanders Are Pushing Hard For The Black Vote

Rep. Duncan Hunter from California pulls from a vaporizer during a Transport Committee meeting.WATCHLIST
U.S. House Committee on Transportation & Infrastructure

Congressman From California Is A Vape Crusader

Marco Rubio at a GOP debate in Boulder, Colorado.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Justin Sullivan

Marco Rubio's Candy Bar Catastrophe Ends In Dental Work

U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) speaks to the crowd at the Phoenix Convention Center July 18, 2015 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Democratic presidential candidate spoke on his central issues of income inequality, job creation, controlling climate change, quality affordable education and getting big money out of politics, to more than 11,000 people attending.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Charlie Leight

Only One Presidential Candidate Is Reportedly Paying Interns

Bernie Sanders path to The White House is further complicated by superdelegates.WATCHLIST
Newsy Staff / Matt Picht

How Democratic Superdelegates Could Cramp Sanders' Style

Bernie Sanders (D-VT) speaks on stage after declaring victory over Hillary Clinton in the New Hampshire PrimaryWATCHLIST
Getty Images / Spencer Platt

Bernie Sanders Got A Huge Amount Of Money After His New Hampshire Win

The GOP is still searching for a main "establishment" candidate.WATCHLIST
Jeb 2016, Kasich for America, Marco Rubio for President

The GOP 'Establishment' Still Doesn't Have Its Guy

A view of the Supreme Court, January 16, 2015 in Washington, DC.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Drew Angerer

The Next President Could Choose A Lot Of Supreme Court Justices

U.S. President Barack Obama tosses up a basketball given to him by coach Geno Auriemma while honoring the 2015 NCAA Women's Basketball Champion University of Connecticut Huskies during a ceremony in the East Room at White House September 15, 2015 in Washington, DC.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Mark Wilson

What Kind Of Athlete Will The Next President Be?

Tampons on a store shelf.WATCHLIST
Shattonbury~commonswiki / CC BY SA 1.0

Female Utah Legislator Aims To Get Rid Of Luxury Tax On Tampons

Her polling average, according to Real Clear Politics, was at just 2 percent.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Scott Olson

Carly Fiorina Drops Out Of Presidential Race

Big data is playing an increasingly vital role in how candidates reach out to potential voters.WATCHLIST
 

How Candidates Get Data on Your Voting, Shopping and Facebook Habits

Christie entered the race as one of the front runners, but his poll numbers consistently slid.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Alex Wong

Chris Christie Drops Out Of Presidential Race

Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders after their decisive wins in New Hampshire.WATCHLIST
Getty Images

Donald Trump And Bernie Sanders Take New Hampshire Primaries

New York Daily News Trump cover.WATCHLIST
New York Daily News

Daily News Dubs Trump's NH Primary Victory 'Dawn Of The Brain Dead'

Ohio Governor John Kasich attends a GOP debate.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Alex Wong

Kasich's Second-Place Finish Is The Best He Could Have Hoped For

Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT) walks through downtown Concord on election day on February 9, 2016 in Concord, New Hampshire.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Spencer Platt

Bernie Sanders Faces An Uphill Climb In South Carolina

Donald Trump addresses supporters during a campaign rally.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Ty Wright

Donald Trump Projected To Win New Hampshire Republican Primary

Sanders' win is not a huge surprise; he was leading Hillary Clinton by double digits going into primary voting.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Joe Raedle

Bernie Sanders Wins New Hampshire Democratic Primary

This little boy cried after his mom didn't vote for Hillary Clinton.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Justin Sullivan, Amanda Gerety

4-Year-Old Boy Is Crushed When His Mom Doesn't Vote For His Candidate