New Polls, Ads, and a Stunt from The Lincoln Project Point to a Nail-Biting Finish for Gubernatorial Race

GOP gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin crept past Democrat Terry McAuliffe in polling averages on Friday, thanks to a Fox poll that showed the Republican ahead by eight points, well outside the three point margin of error. A Washington Post poll released Friday showed a tighter race, with Youngkin trailing McAuliffe by one point. Youngkin now leads the Real Clear Politics polling average by a hair — 0.9 percentage points. That’s setting Virginians up for a nail-biter on Tuesday evening, but depending on how close the results are, the winner might not be clear for days, since mail-in-ballots can be counted if they’re received by noon on Friday.

“Youngkin has as good a shot as we’ve seen in a decade. Also, attorney general tends to run two-to-three points ahead of governor for us,” Prince William County GOP Vice-Chair Willie Deutsch said. “I’m confident we have a legit shot but I wouldn’t put much money on anyone.”

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Joy Reid Says Youngkin ‘Poster Child’ for ‘Banning Books

MSNBC host Joy Reid, steadily losing viewership since former President Donald J. Trump exited the White House, has found a new boogeyman in Virginia’s Republican gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin.

The homophobic former blogger set her sights on Younkin during Thursday night’s episode of “The ReidOut.”

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‘Will Your Daughter be Next?’ Brutal Ad Targets McAuliffe After Alleged Loudoun County Rape Coverup

An ad launched by the American Principles Project, which describes itself as “the premier national organization engaging directly in campaigns and advocacy on behalf of the family,” blasts Democrat gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe in connection with the rape of a girl in Loudoun County. 

“In Loudoun County, Virginia a 15-year-old girl was brutally raped by a male student wearing a dress in the girl’s bathroom,” the ad says. “Democrats covered it up. A few weeks later, the same male student raped a 14-year-old girl.”

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Youngkin: Trump Not Coming to Virginia Before Election

Former Governor Terry McAuliffe is campaigning for reelection with the help of national Democrats, even the currently-unpopular President Joe Biden, but GOP candidate Glenn Youngkin says he wants to keep the race focused on Virginia. Youngkin is largely avoiding the in-state presence of national Republicans, and he highlighted the contrast between the two campaign strategies in comments about his bus tour. On Thursday, Youngkin said that former President Donald Trump would not visit Virginia before the election.

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Money Keeps Pouring into Virginia’s Gubernatorial Race

Virginia’s gubernatorial candidates together raised $28.3 million in the first three weeks of October. Democratic candidate Terry McAuliffe raised $12.9 million, with $1.9 million cash on hand. GOP candidate Glenn Youngkin raised $15.4 million, with nearly $7.9 million cash on hand at the end of the reporting period, according to The Virginia Public Access Project. Youngkin’s fundraising includes another $3.5 million in self-loans, for a total $20 million that he has loaned himself throughout the campaign.

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Commentary: New Virginia Poll Shows McAuliffe Plus One, Democrats Panic in Final Stretch

Once upon a time, Republicans were rocked to sleep with notions of momentum and enthusiasm in the closing weeks and days of a campaign.

In 2006, George Allen was thought to have sufficiently recovered from a 20+ point slide in order to eke out a 2-3 point win — only to lose by 0.4% (just 11,000 votes) after 30,000 votes were found in Hampton Roads.

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Polls: Virginia Gubernatorial Race Nearly Tied

New polls in Virginia’s elections continue to show a tight race. A poll of likely voters from Emerson College/Nexstar Media reports a tie, 48.1 percent for GOP gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin, and 47.9 percent for Democratic candidate Terry McAuliffe. A poll of likely voters from USA Today/ Suffolk University found a near tie, with 45.60 percent for McAuliffe and 45.20 percent support for Youngkin. A poll of likely voters from Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) found 41 percent support for McAuliffe, with 38 percent support for Youngkin.

Based on that, Real Clear Politics reports McAuliffe’s lead at an average 1.5 points.

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Group’s Anti-McAuliffe Ad Barred from Airing on Virginia TV

The conservative group Independent Women’s Voice (IWV) said earlier this week that an ad attacking Democrat Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe was deemed too explicit for television in Virginia. 

“Numerous Virginia high schools’ libraries included books with pornographic content. IWV created an ad to raise awareness about this issue—but the ad was REJECTED as too explicit to run during the 11 p.m. hour on TV in Virginia,” Kelsey Bolar, the group’s Senior Policy Analyst, said on Twitter.

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McAuliffe Campaign Brings Out ‘Big Guns’ in Final Weeks

Gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe, seeking his second non-consecutive term Virginia’s Governor, has been campaigning with powerful Democrat Party allies during the final stretch of his campaign against Republican Glenn Youngkin. 

President Joe Biden will campaign for McAuliffe this week in northern Virginia, a typical stronghold for Democrat. Biden previously stumped for McAuliffe on July 22. 

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Democrats Descend on Churches in Virginia in Souls to the Polls Campaign Urging Parishioners to Vote for Terry McAuliffe

Democratic leaders are targeting church goers to get out the vote, endorsing Democratic incumbent Gov. Terry McAuliffe, who is slightly behind in the polls for the first time after making controversial remarks about parents not having a say in their children’s education.

Some argue the Souls to the Polls campaign violates IRS rules governing tax-exempt entities such as churches.

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College Republicans Told That They Cannot Endorse Glenn Youngkin

Administrators at Washington and Lee University told conservative students to cease campaigning for Glenn Youngkin, the Republican nominee for Virginia governor.

The university’s College Republicans displayed materials supporting Youngkin during a September 12 activities fair, but were told by Director of Student Activities Kelsey Goodwin that they had to remove the materials due to the school’s tax-exempt status.

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Youngkin Draws Thousands in Blue-Leaning Richmond Suburb

GOP gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin stopped in Henrico on the first day of his Win with Glenn Bus Tour on Saturday evening. In his speech, attorney general candidate Delegate Jason Miyares (R-Virginia Beach) touted the need for reform in Virginia’s parole board, while Youngkin focused on his goal to lower the cost of living with a list of top economic priorities. But education took the front seat in both candidates’ speeches.

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Former President Barack Obama Stumps for Gubernatorial Hopeful Terry McAuliffe in Richmond

Former President Barack Obama joined Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe in Virginia’s capital on Saturday. From the steps of a library in the center of Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU), McAuliffe, Obama, and other top Virginia Democrats reminded the young crowd of key Democratic victories, including expanded abortion access, felon voting rights restoration, Medicaid expansion, and legalizing gay marriage. Threatening that progress, they said, is GOP gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin.

McAuliffe said he would work for Virginians in a bipartisan way.

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Education Group Launches Million Dollar Ad Campaign Against Virginia Democratic Gubernatorial Candidate McAuliffe

Free to Learn Action, an advocacy group intent on removing politics from the classroom in America’s public schools, launched a one million dollar ad campaign against Virginia’s Democrat gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe Thursday.

“The ad highlights the devastating consequences of allowing partisan political agendas to seep into schools while also undermining parents’ roles in their child’s education,” the organization said in an email. 

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Monmouth Poll: Youngkin and McAuliffe Tied Among Registered Voters

Virginia’s gubernatorial race is a tie among registered voters, according to a new Monmouth University poll, which found that Republican Glenn Youngkin has made gains against Terry McAuliffe since the university’s September poll.

“Youngkin (46 percent) and McAuliffe (46 percent) hold identical levels of support among all registered voters. This marks a shift from prior Monmouth polls where the Democrat held a five-point lead (48 percent to 43 percent in September and 47 percent to 42 percent in August),” the poll’s press release states.

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Youngkin Campaign on Offense After McAuliffe Exits Interview When Asked About Critical Race Theory

In the ever-tightening race for Virginia’s governor’s mansion, one candidate appeared to let the pressure boil over.

Former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D), running for his second non-consecutive term in office, exited an unfinished interview with WJLA-TV’s Nick Minock after scolding the reporter.

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Youngkin Calls for Investigation of Loudoun County School Board over Sexual Assault Cover-Up

Republican gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin called for an “immediate investigation” of the Loudoun County School Board for “gross negligence” in allegedly covering up sexual assault.

The GOP candidate said on Tuesday evening that the school board covered up two cases of juvenile sexual assault. The family of one of the victims has announced that they are suing the school district.

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Virginia Gubernatorial Race Still Close with Two Weeks Left

Former President Obama is coming to Virginia to campaign for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe, one of several Democratic heavyweights to stump for the once and would-be future governor. However, the de-facto leader of the Republican Party, former President Donald Trump, hasn’t made a stop in Virginia to support GOP candidate Glenn Youngkin. Since the nominating convention, Youngkin has pivoted away from Trump and hard-line Republicans and successfully pulled some independents away from McAuliffe, who is turning to souls-to-the-polls events and big names like Obama, first Lady Jill Biden, Stacey Abrams, and Vice President Kamala Harris to boost turnout among the Democratic faithful.

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Virginia’s Gubernatorial Hopeful Youngkin Campaign Responds to Stacey Abrams Campaigning for McAuliffe

The campaign for Republican gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin blasted its Democrat opponent Terry McAuliffe for campaigning with failed Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams. 

“Terry McAuliffe said he was proud to be endorsed by radical ‘defund the police’ groups, and now he’s campaigning with the radical Stacey Abrams, who said the election was stolen from her, compared law enforcement officers to terrorists, opposed enforcing our immigration laws, and supported defunding the police,” Youngkin spokesperson Macauley Porter told The Virginia Star. “Virginians are seeing that Terry McAuliffe is too extreme for Virginia and will reject his anti-police, liberal agenda at the polls.”

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Prominent Liberal Watchdog Group Files Hatch Act Complaint Against Jen Psaki

A prominent liberal watchdog group filed a Hatch Act complaint against White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki on Friday, saying her apparent endorsement of Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McCauliffe during a White House press briefing may have violated federal law.

“By mixing official government business with support of a candidate for partisan political office in the weeks before the election and engaging in political activity while on duty, Ms. Psaki appears to have used her official authority or influence for the purpose of interfering with or affecting the result of an election, political activity that is prohibited by law,” Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) said in its complaint filed with the Office of Special Counsel (OSC).

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Trafalgar Poll Shows Tied Gubernatorial Race, Fox Poll Shows Widening McAuliffe Lead

A Fox News poll released Thursday found 51 percent support for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe and 46 percent support for GOP candidate Glenn Youngkin among likely voters. A Trafalgar Group poll released the same day found Youngkin and McAuliffe practically tied among likely voters, with 48.4 percent support for Youngkin, and 47.5 percent support for McAuliffe. Real Clear Politics’ (RCP) polling average still places McAuliffe slightly ahead by 2.2 points.

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Commentary: The One Number That Puts Youngkin in the Governor’s Mansion

Some more thoughts on the FOX News poll showing former Democratic governor Terry McAuliffe up by 5 points over Republican challenger Glenn Youngkin just three (and now two) weeks out from the November 2nd election.

One of the numbers in the poll? McAuliffe’s support among black voters at +63. Which is shorthand for a 79/16 gap — which sounds atrocious (and quite frankly, is atrocious for a party built on the premise that all men should be free).

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Virginia House District 66 Profile: With No Incumbent, Mike Cherry Must Keep Katie Sponsler from Flipping the District

Virginia Republicans only need to flip six seats to retake the majority in the House of Delegates, but to do that, they must protect a handful of vulnerable Republican districts like House District 66. Former Speaker of the House Kirk Cox (R-Colonial Heights) is retiring after assuming office in 199o, and the urban, suburban, and rural district leans Democratic. It’s one of a handful of seats that survived Trump-era Democratic waves in greater Richmond in 2017 and 2019. GOP candidate Mike Cherry is running against Democrat Katie Sponsler in a battle of turnout and name recognition.

“This is an open seat so for the first time in decades, voters have the opportunity to learn about and choose between two new candidates, without the weight of incumbency skewing the election,” Chesterfield County Democratic Committee Chair Sara Gaborik told The Virginia Star.

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Former President Trump Calls In to Bannon-Headlined ‘Take Back Virginia’ Rally

Steve Bannon headlined a get-out-the-vote rally for the MAGA base in Henrico on Wednesday evening, where speakers included Senator Amanda Chase (R-Chesterfield) and Arizona State House Representative Mark Finchem, who is using 2020 election audits in that state in his campaign for Arizona Secretary of State. But the biggest reaction from the crowd came when former President Donald Trump called in for about five minutes.

“Glenn Youngkin is a great gentleman,” Trump said. “You have a chance to get one of the most successful businessmen in the country, and he did it in a quiet professional way, in Glenn Youngkin. I hope — he and others by the way — but I hope Glenn gets in there  and he’ll straighten out Virginia, and he’ll lower taxes, all of the things that we want a governor to do, and I really believe that Virginia is very, very, winnable.”

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Youngkin Campaign Responds to McAuliffe’s Denial of CRT in Virginia Schools

Terry McAuliffe and Glenn Youngkin

The gubernatorial campaign for Republican Glenn Youngkin responded to former Gov. Terry McAuliffe, running for his second nonconsecutive term in that office, who once again denied that Critical Race Theory (CRT) is being taught in schools in Virginia. 

“Virginians know that Terry McAuliffe doesn’t have the best interests of parents and students in mind,” Youngkin spokesman Christian Martinez told The Virginia Star. “McAuliffe wants to keep parents out of the classroom so his special interest allies can force their radical political agenda into classrooms and tell children what to think instead of teaching them how to think. As governor, Glenn Youngkin will empower parents, ban critical race theory, restore excellence in our public schools, and raise teacher pay.”

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Gubernatorial Candidates Use Ads and Political Appearances to Boost Enthusiasm

Gubernatorial candidates Glenn Youngkin and Terry McAuliffe have launched competing ads. A McAuliffe ad links Youngkin’s calls for election integrity to Trump’s claims about the 2020 election, while the Youngkin ad fact-checks McAuliffe’s recitation of recent COVID-19 case numbers.

“On at least three separate days – September 28, September 29, and October 7 – McAuliffe claimed there had recently been 8,000 cases in Virginia, a gross inflation that amounts to nearly three to four times the actual number of cases,” a Youngkin press release explains.

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CNU/Wason Center Poll: Virginia GOP Statewide Candidates Making Gains Among Independents

Glenn Youngkin and Terry McAuliffe

A new Christopher Newport University Wason Center poll released Friday found GOP gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin slightly behind Terry McAuliffe, 49 percent to 45 percent, which is nearly in line with the Real Clear Politics current polling average placing McAuliffe ahead by 3.5 percentage points. Liberation Party candidate Princess Blanding got one percent, with five percent undecided.

The poll also included the lieutenant governor’s race, which hasn’t seen as much polling, and found that Delegate Hala Ayala (D-Prince William) leads GOP candidate Winsome Sears 48 percent to 44 percent.

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Republican Party of Virginia Files IRS Complaint Against Nonprofit for Allegedly Intervening in Gubernatorial Election

The Republican Party of Virginia is filing a complaint with the IRS alleging that 501(c)(3) nonprofit Virginia Excels had violated tax law by engaging in “overt and unambiguous political campaign intervention” to support Terry McAuliffe.

“On September 7, 2021, only 10 days before early voting began, Virginia Excels issued a press release touting its new ‘report’ on eliminating the income tax. The ‘report’ appears to be one of the first statements the organization has ever issued on taxes,” an RPV press release states.

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Fairfax Dems Use COVID-19 in Attempt to Eliminate Witness Signatures on Absentee Ballots

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, comprised of nine Democrats and one lone Republican, voted in favor this week of a measure that would end the witness signature requirement on absentee ballots. 

They are now asking Gov. Ralph Northam (D) for permission to ignore the requirement, according to Inside NOVA. 

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Emerson College Poll Has Youngkin Down One Percent Against McAuliffe

A new Nexstar/Emerson College poll conducted at the beginning of October has GOP gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin one point behind Democrat Terry McAuliffe, 48 percent to 49 percent. A Fox News poll conducted at the end of September found 48 percent support for McAuliffe and 44 percent support for Youngkin.

“The new poll by Emerson demonstrates clearly that all the momentum is on Glenn Youngkin’s side and he is poised to win this race in Virginia on November 2,” said The Virginia Star’s Publisher, radio talk show host John Fredricks.

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Qualified Immunity Becomes One of the Deciding Factors of 2021 Virginia Elections

The rise in violent crime across Virginia combined with increases in law enforcement officers leaving the field have started to raise questions from voters about the once-popular push from Leftist activists and Democrat lawmakers to “reimagine policing” and essentially end qualified immunity, a legal protection mechanism for law enforcement officers.

Montgomery County Sheriff Hank Partin told The Virginia Star “absolutely, without a doubt” that Democrats’ threats to end qualified immunity are affecting law enforcement’s ability to keep and retain officers. He spoke at length about how law enforcement would be negatively affected if Virginia Democrats were to end qualified immunity. He discussed these protections are in place to protect law enforcement who are trying to follow the law.

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Republicans Competitive to Retake Virginia House of Delegates Majority

Republicans have a good chance to retake the majority in Virginia’s House of Delegates, powered by historically-Republican voters in swing districts who were alienated by former President Donald Trump. To win the majority, Republicans need to protect what they have and take six seats. They see opportunities in Northern Virginia, metro Richmond, Virginia Beach, and downstate Virginia.

“We feel that with the environment that’s going on right now, we’ve got great opportunities to pick up five to nine seats to take over,” Delegate Terry Kilgore (R-Wise) told The Virginia Star. “That’s one thing you don’t have any control of, but the environment, you know, of Biden and just the overreach by a lot of the Democrats’ bills last year has really focused the independents back our way.”

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Carole King Sends Fundraising Email for Terry McAuliffe, Claims McAuliffe has ‘Proven Record’

Famous singer-songwriter Carole King on Saturday sent a fundraising email for Virginia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe, claiming McAuliffe has a “proven record.”

The email, which was sent with the goal of “helping Terry McAuliffe win Virginia,” repeatedly knocked GOP nominee Glenn Youngkin.

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Another Election Analysis Firm Shifts Rating to Show a More Competitive Virginia Gubernatorial Race

Inside Elections updated their Virginia gubernatorial race rating Wednesday, shifting from Likely Democratic to Lean Democratic.

“Former Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe has had a consistent advantage over Republican Glenn Youngkin in the commonwealth, but some Democratic strategists are concerned about President Joe Biden’s drag on the race and about the lack of urgency on the Democratic side,” Inside Elections’ Nathan Gonzales wrote. “The public polling points to a very competitive race. McAuliffe is ahead of Youngkin by three points in both the FiveThirtyEight and RealClearPolitics polling averages, neither of which have changed much in the last six weeks.”

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Loudoun County Teachers Speak Against Transgender Policy at Rally

child running with trans flag

Loudoun County teachers Tanner Cross, Monica Gill, and Kimberly Wright spoke at a rally before the Loudoun County School Board meeting Tuesday evening. They are suing the school district over its transgender policy 8040 that includes a requirement that teachers use students’ preferred pronouns. Previously, the lawsuit focused on Cross’ termination after he spoke out at a school board meeting; an injunction in that case forced the district to allow him to return to work.

“I cannot thank this community enough for you support and unwavering dedication to stand alongside me in the fight to speak freely in a continued effort to protect our students and our children from harmful ideologies,” Cross said at the rally. “Now, the battle turns to policy 8040 itself.”

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Youngkin Campaign Rebukes McAuliffe After Vow to Strip Parents of School Input

Former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D), running for his second non-consecutive term as Virginia’s most senior elected official, has become the subject of criticism after remarks from a Tuesday night debate. 

During the debate, McAuliffe claimed he thought parents should have little to no input on what they’re children are being taught in schools. 

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Third-Party Candidate Princess Blanding Interrupts McAuliffe, Youngkin Moderate-Focused Debate

In the last of only two gubernatorial debates GOP candidate Glenn Youngkin and Democratic candidate Terry McAuliffe made their pitches to Virginia moderates on issues including vaccinations, abortion, qualified immunity, business climate, and Afghan refugees in the Commonwealth. But Liberation Party candidate Princess Blanding provided the most interesting moment of the debate by interrupting from the audience.

Moderators had asked McAuliffe about a statistic the Youngkin campaign cites showing that murder rates rose during McAuliffe’s first term. McAuliffe responded by citing his past investment in law enforcement and sheriffs. He also called for gun control.

“Terry, why am I not allowed on the stage? As governor I will defund the police,” Blanding said before being drowned out by moderators and producers cut away from the live feed.

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Cook Political Report: Virginia Gubernatorial Race Is a Toss Up

Glenn Youngkin and Terry McAuliffe

Glenn Youngkin’s tightrope walk between suburban moderates and hard-right Republicans seems to be paying off — on Friday the Cook Political Report (CPR) announced a rating shift in the gubernatorial contest from Lean Democratic to Toss Up. That matches with polling from a variety of sources that show an increasingly close race.

“We can no longer say this is a contest where the Democrat has the advantage. While many of the fundamentals favor [Terry] McAuliffe — and we expect he still has a slight edge — it’s Youngkin who seems to have the enthusiasm on his side,” CPR reported.

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Despite a Slim Lead in Virginia Gubernatorial Race, New PPP Poll Should Have Democrats ‘Fearing for Their Lives’ Expert Says

A new University of Mary Washington (UMW) poll of 1,000 Virginia adults found Terry McAuliffe leading with 43 percent, Glenn Youngkin with 38 percent, and Liberation Party candidate Princess Blanding at two percent. Among the 528 likely voters in the poll, Youngkin gained ten points, reaching 48 percent, while McAuliffe and Blanding stayed at 43 percent and two percent, respectively. But elections forecaster Chaz Nuttycombe said that the big story is the Public Policy Polling (PPP) poll released Tuesday that had McAuliffe leading Youngkin 45 to 42 percent; it surveyed 875 Virginia voters on September 17 and 18 with a 3.3 percent margin of error. It did not include Blanding.

“The one big exclamation point that should be having Dems say, ‘Oh s–t, oh f–k, oh s–t, oh f–k,’ is the PPP poll that came out. That had McAuliffe up by three. PPP is a very Democrat-leaning pollster,” he said. “Their polls usually overestimate Democrats by a few points.”

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Commentary: Virginia, Not California, Will Provide Lessons for 2022

In the wake of a big statewide campaign win of any kind, political pundits rev into overdrive with broad pronouncements about the takeaways and what the result reveals about the mood of the nation. Often, the results are more prosaic — simply the political status quo for that particular state or district in that specific slice of time.

Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom’s smackdown of the recall was no different this week. Few longtime state politicos were surprised by his ability to win big in solidly blue California.

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Virginia March for Life Kicks off Early Voting

RICHMOND, Virginia — Pro-life advocates marched around the Virginia Capitol in Richmond on Friday, the same day as early voting in Virginia’s elections. Virginia legislators Delegate Emily Brewer (R-Suffolk), Delegate John McGuire (R-Henrico) and Senator Bryce Reeves (R-Spotsylvania) spoke to the Virginia March for Life crowd from the steps of the Capitol building.

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Youngkin Campaign Reacts to McAuliffe’s Massive Northam Flip-Flop

Republican Glenn Youngkin’s gubernatorial campaign has responded to his Democrat opponent’s apparent change of heart about current Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D). 

Terry McAuliffe, the former head of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) who is running for his second non-consecutive term as governor of Virginia, once called on Northam to resign when a yearbook image of the Commonwealth’s governor wearing blackface or a Ku Klux Klan hood reemerged. 

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New Poll Shows Virginia Gubernatorial Race in a ‘Dead Heat’

A new poll announced Thursday has Virginia’s gubernatorial race in a statistical tie, with early voting beginning Friday. According to an Emerson College poll commissioned by WRIC, Democratic candidate Terry McAuliffe has the support of 49 percent of likely voters while GOP candidate Glenn Youngkin has 45 percent. That’s within the margin of error: plus or minus 3.4 percent.

“Statistically speaking, the poll isn’t telling you that McAuliffe is going to win or Youngkin is going to lose. It is really saying it is a dead heat,” Emerson College Polling Director Spencer Kimball told WRIC.

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Youngkin and McAuliffe Meet for First of Two Debates

One day before early voting begins, GOP gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin and Democratic candidate Terry McAuliffe faced off for the first time in a debate at the Appalachian School of Law in southwestern Virginia Thursday. Moderators asked candidates about policies including abortion, Critical Race Theory (CRT), right to work, qualified immunity, vaccine mandates, and Confederate monuments. Youngkin repeatedly tried to link policy issues to McAuliffe’s past record, while McAuliffe repeatedly tried to tie Youngkin to former President Trump. Both candidates also committed to accepting the result of the election if certified by the state.

Moderators asked McAuliffe he would sign laws that legalize third trimester abortions even without currently-required approval of three doctors in Virginia.

“If they came up with a solution, and the woman’s life has to be in danger, it has to be certified, and if you had a legitimate doctor that says, ‘This woman, her life’s in danger,’ of course I would support that,” McAuliffe said.

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COVID-19 Vaccination Strategy Latest Issue in Gubernatorial Race

How to encourage more Virginians to get the COVID-19 vaccine is the latest battleground in the gubernatorial race. On Monday, Terry McAuliffe announced his “Virginia is for vaccine lovers” plan with a push for school divisions to require the vaccine and ensure health care providers follow federal guidance. His plan also includes business incentives, enhanced marketing, and a voluntary COVID-safety compliance certification.

“COVID is here. It’s not going away anytime soon, so we have to do everything that we possibly can to keep our children in school, build the strongest economy, and we’ve got to really get serious, and we’ve got to fight this deadly infection of COVID,” he said on a Tuesday press call.

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‘Moderate’ McAuliffe Campaigns with Anti-Police Virginia State Delegate

Delegate Joshua Cole

Virginia’s Democrat gubernatorial candidate, who has often been pitched as a moderate, recently joined a far-left State House Delegate on the campaign trail. 

Last weekend, Terry McAuliffe campaigned in the Stafford area with Del. Joshua Cole (D-VA-28), knocking doors with the first-term Delegate. 

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Virginia GOP Lieutenant Governor Candidate Winsome Sears Fires Majority of Staff

The Republican nominee for Lieutenant Governor of Virginia, former Delegate Winsome Sears (R-Norfolk), fired a majority of her staff on Wednesday evening. Multiple outlets report that Sears did this as more of a “course correction” to complete her campaign. 

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Ben Carson, Youngkin, and Sears Criticize Virginia Education Policy at Loudoun County Rally

Secretary Ben Carson

Former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson spoke against mask mandates, Critical Race Theory, and COVID-19 vaccines for children in a Loudoun County appearance alongside GOP candidates Glenn Youngkin and Winsome Sears on Wednesday night. A large, energetic crowd filled a conference room; the event was hosted by Fight for Schools and 1776 Action.

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Texas Abortion Law Pushes Pro-Life vs. Abortion Debate into Virginia Campaigns

pregnancy

Voting in Virginia begins in less than two weeks, and abortion law is taking center stage in Virginia’s statewide races. Democratic candidates are highlighting a controversial Texas law as an example of what Republicans would push for, while Republicans point to a late-term abortion bill that Virginia Democrats pushed for in 2019. On Friday, GOP lieutenant governor candidate Winsome Sears said on Newsmax that she would support a heartbeat bill in Virginia.

Sears said, “Here’s the thing: when did it become the wrong thing for us to support the babies in the womb?”

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Virginia GOP Launches Ad Bashing McAuliffe for Clinton Ties

The Virginia GOP launched an ad bashing Democrat gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe for his recent fundraiser with former President Bill Clinton. 

“I go back with President Clinton and Hillary to 1980,” McAuliffe says in an interview included in the ad. “We’ve vacationed together for years. We’re best friends.” 

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