Virginia Governor’s Race, What the Expectations are?
The Virginia Governor’s Race has national implications and it gives us insight into the national mood. In the last decade, Virginia has shifted from a state that regularly elected statewide officeholders from both parties to a reliably blue state. Republicans have not won a statewide election in Virginia since 2009. And only one year ago, Joe Biden, despite barely campaigning, won Virginia by 10 points. When you add into the mix that the Democrat candidate, Terry McAuliffe, won the Virginia gubernatorial election in November of 2013 and served as Virginia’s governor from 2014 to 2018, most pundits saw this as an easy victory for the Democrat.
But then Joe Biden and his extreme agenda happened. With record high inflation, a lagging economy, high energy costs, empty store shelves, a supply chain crisis, a border crisis, a deadly and embarrassing failed withdrawal from Afghanistan, the emergence of China as a serious nuclear threat, etc, Joe Biden has made being a liberal Democrat a pejorative. By the start of the football season, college crowds began chanting “F#ck Joe Biden” and now professional and college sports crowds also use the cleaned up version “Let’s Go Brandon!” And four different songs or versions entitled “Let’s Go Brandon!” occupied the number 1, 2, 4 and 8 spots on iTunes sales.
As McAuliffe’s polling numbers began to fall, he publicly admitted that Biden’s unpopularity was creating a real drag on his campaign. But then McAuliffe created his own headwind that has crushed his campaign. At a televised debate between McAuliffe and the Republican candidate, Glenn Youngkin, McAuliffe was asked about parent’s objections to sexually explicit materials that were available to young elementary school students. His response was “I don’t think parents should be telling schools what they should teach.”
The context for that bombshell was that a Virginia county school board had been silencing parents despite their concerns about a transgender policy that resulted in a 14 year old girl being raped in a school bathroom. The school system hid the story from the public and simply reassigned the boy to another school where he sexually assaulted another young girl. When this came to light the school system lied about what had happened and engaged in a clumsy coverup. But the public was having none of it and parents showed up in large numbers at school board meetings to voice their frustrations and demand change.
Then the Biden Administration issued a letter from Attorney General Merrick Garland which identified upset parents as potential domestic terrorists and instructed national security law enforcement personnel to focus on parents — not on actual terrorists, but on parents who were frustrated with an unresponsive school system. He claimed a significant uptick in violence without any evidence supporting his specious assertion. The National School Board Association has since apologized for the letter that triggered Garland’s overreaching directive. But Garland has simply defended and doubled down on the directive despite its obvious flaws.
So an historically unpopular Biden Administration is telling parents that if they show up to school board meetings and sound upset that their daughter was raped in a bathroom because of the school’s policies, you may be investigated by the FBI as a domestic terrorist. Meanwhile McAuliffe is saying very clearly and unapologetically that parents should not have a voice in the education of their children.
That punctuated McAuliffe’s free fall in the polls. He once had a fairly steady, albeit small lead. Now McAuliffe is trailing by 2 to 8 points in various media polls. Virginians who voted for Biden only one year ago, and who historically vote Democrat, are now voting for Republican Glenn Youngkin.
It is important to note that when McAuliffe was governor of Virginia, he dealt with schools that were failing and falling below acceptable standards, not by improving them, but by lowering the standards so that they were no longer defined as failing schools.
Very few people are so blindly partisan that you can tell them that they should vote for you because you’ll make sure they have no voice in their own children’s education — particularly when on a national basis the allied Biden Administration is engaging in its own war on parents.
While I expect to see Republican Glenn Youngkin win the Virginia Governor’s race, one cannot be sure. We no longer have election day. We have election month. And many people voted before this issue became fully developed and all the facts known. So if the early vote favors McAuliffe, the question is will the vote on election day be big enough to overcome the early vote that was cast without a full knowledge and understanding of the Democrat’s anti-parent and anti-education agenda.
Obviously, if Youngkin wins, as I expect, it will send shockwaves across the nation. If in a strong blue state like Virginia, a former governor is defeated by a newcomer to politics, that means no extremist liberal is safe. They could all be defeated, if they don’t jettison the extremist Biden agenda.
But even if McAuliffe manages to win in a very tight election, it will send a signal to the hard Left because Virginia should have been a cakewalk. But the extremism on full display in Washington otherwise known as the Biden agenda is very unpopular and is causing voters who formerly counted themselves as Democrats to switch and vote Republican. So either way, Virginia is reminding Democrats everywhere that there is an electoral price to be paid for embracing Biden’s extremism.
If Glenn Youngkin wins, as the polls now suggest he will, he could very well be a future candidate for the US Presidency because he’s found a way to unite conservatives and moderates in Virginia. More By The Author