Mitt Romney is lucky he has a big family at home - five sons and a growing cadre of grandchildren - because he's a lonely figure at work.
Romney is a Republican and the governor of Massachusetts, where both senators, all 10 members of Congress and 87% of state legislators are Democrats. Just 13% of voters are registered Republicans.
Kathleen Sebelius knows the feeling. She is a Democrat and the governor of Kansas, where registered Republicans outnumber Democrats by nearly 2-to-1. No Democratic presidential candidate has carried the state in four decades.
What's a governor like her doing in a state like that? (Related graphic: Governors don't all fit red, blue stereotypes)
The polarization of politics has made Washington, D.C., a place where most Democratic and Republican officials don't seem to trust or even talk to one another. The top domestic issue on this year's agenda,
Social Security, splits along party lines. In the Senate this week, a confrontation over filibusters of judicial nominees threatens to grind even routine business to a halt.
But the situation in many state capitals belies the conclusion that the nation has split into warring red and blue camps. The seven states where
John Kerry got his widest margins of victory in 2004 all have Republican governors. Nine of the states that George W. Bush swept by double digits have Democratic governors.
In all, 21 of the 50 states have governors from the party that lost the state in the last presidential election - that is, red governors of blue states and blue governors of red states. In most of them, voter expectations and state constitutional requirements mean that the two sides are forced to work together and reach compromises on such bread-and-butter issues as hig