Before the General Election on Nov. 2, Georgians must elect party nominees in the primary elections in July 2010. As of now, both the Democratic and Republican parties have crowded fields of candidates announced for the governor's race. More could get into the fray between now and July.
Right now, the top candidates in the Republican Party are John Oxendine, Karen Handel, Nathan Deal, Eric Johnson and Austin Scott.
In the Democratic Party the top candidates are Roy Barnes, Thurbert Baker, Dubose Porter and David Poythress.
It's still a long time until the July primaries, and Georgia's political history is full of races in which the early front-runners have faltered by voting day.
Who are the front runners today?
Among the Democrats just about everyone is predicting Barnes, the former governor, will win the party's nomination. Many think Baker will run second in the Democratic Primary.
As for the Republican Primary, predictions vary. Oxendine leads in most polls today. If you ask enough people, you will get a lot of different answers as to who will win the Republican Primary.
Some political types say they could make a case that four of the GOP candidates could come out the winner in the primary - Oxendine, Handel, Deal or Johnson.
While Oxendine is leading in the polls, many Republicans think Deal will make solid gains and could be the leader by the time the primary election begins. Some are asking questions about Handel's campaign. She was seen as potentially an early leader in the race. She's not getting a lot of support in the polls, and some Republicans are saying she is not running a good campaign so far. Johnson from Savannah is expected to run a good campaign, but name recognition in many parts of the state may be his problem.
The crystal ball right now in the Republican race sees either Oxendine or Deal getting into the general election against Democrat Barnes.
But remember, things have a habit of changing in Georgia statewide politics. It's really too early to pick winners.