Democrats are defending three open seats on the 2024 gubernatorial map. We have long known that North Carolina would be the hardest to hold, as popular Gov. Roy Cooper is term-limited. However, Democrats have had unique success winning the Tar Heel State’s executive mansion: the state has only elected three Republican governors in the past century.

Our initial rating of this contest, now set between Democratic Attorney General Josh Stein and Republican Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson, was Lean Democrat, given the party’s recent track record of winning even as former President Donald Trump carried the state. Plus, Robinson’s lengthy history of controversial comments — from maligning women to attacking the LGBTQ+ community to making anti-Semitic remarks — initially made him look like a weaker candidate akin to Pennsylvania’s Doug Mastriano last cycle.

But unlike Mastriano, Robinson is raising actual money — more than $10.5 million so far. And according to both Democrats and Republicans, he’s on track to bring in the most money ever for a Republican gubernatorial nominee — even outpacing the most recent GOP governor, Pat McCrory, who

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