In 1993, gubernatorial elections in VA and NJ served as precursors to the Republican wave in the 1994 mid terms. In both states, Republican candidates won seats that had been held by Democrats. Now it's 2009 and polls show that the Republicans are leading in each state - and, as with 1993, Democrats currently hold each seat. Republican challenger Chris Christie continues to lead incumbent Democrat Jon Corzine in the race for New Jersey governor. The latest average from Realclearpolitics.com puts the lead at 6.5%. In the race to become the next governor of VA Republican Robert McDonnell retains a steady lead over Democrat Creigh Deeds - an average lead of 10.2%. A Republican victory in VA would be especially painful to Democrats after President Obama's solid victory there in 2008. It may signal that VA will be less than reliably Blue come 2012.
Watch these two states very closely... two GOP victories would indicate a high level of GOP intensity, Independent willingness to vote GOP, and, most deadly, Democratic apathy.