What's at stake in Tuesday's elections

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Associated Press

Posted on November 2, 2009 at 1:08 PM

Updated Monday, Nov 2 at 1:08 PM

What's at stake in Tuesday's election:

GOVERNORS: Voters in two states, New Jersey and Virginia, are electing governors. The New Jersey race has centered on the economy and the state's highest-in-the-nation taxes. In Virginia, polls are predicting a Republican victory, which would be a setback in a state where Democrats last year handed the GOP its first presidential defeat in 44 years.

MAYORS: Mayors are being elected in several major cities, including Atlanta, Boston, Detroit, Houston and New York.

U.S. HOUSE: Two special elections, one in northern California and one in upstate New York, won't change the balance of power of the 435-member House, where Democrats hold 256 seats. Both seats were vacated when the incumbent took a job in the Obama administration. A special election in New York's rural and strongly Republican 23rd Congressional District exposed tension between rival GOP factions when some prominent Republicans, including former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, backed the Conservative Party candidate, forcing the GOP candidate to bow out.

BALLOT MEASURES: Voters in Maine have the opportunity to make it the first state to approve gay marriage at the ballot box with a referendum on whether to accept or reject a same-sex marriage law approved by legislators in May. In Washington, voters will be deciding whether to keep a Legislature-approved "everything but marriage" domestic partnerships law, which grants registered partners the same legal rights as married couples. Ohio voters will decide whether to bring casinos to the state.

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