McAuliffe vs Youngkin Polls: Three Mistakes of Terry McAuliffe
The Virginia Gubernatorial Race 2021 is going down to the wire. The Democratic Party was expecting an easy victory in a State that has voted a Republican Governor just once in the last 5 Gubernatorial elections. Instead, the party is now furiously fighting what is probably a losing battle against the Republican Gubernatorial Candidate Glenn Youngkin.
McAuliffe vs Youngkin Polls: Too Much Trump in the Campaign
President Trump lost the state of Virginia to Biden by about 10 points in 2020, but Republican candidates in the U.S. House of Representatives Election(Virginia) were trailing the Democrats by just 4 points in the House of Representative elections held on the same day. This is inspite of a polarised national environment which saw local polarised on national issues.
There were many voters in Virginia who weren’t opposed to Republicans or Republican values but to Trump. Most of these voters were Racial Minority voters and Suburban College educated voters who were repelled by Trump’s handling of Covid or his personal misdemeanours. To appeal to these voters in a state like Virginia the Republican Party needed a moderate Gubernatorial candidate and Glenn Youngkin has turned out to be that candidate.
Glenn Youngkin has criticised and rejected the Jan 6th Capitol Riots and has not questioned the Electoral Integrity of the 2020 Presidential Race and has also said multiple times that he believes Biden is the lawfully elected President.
He has not taken stances consistent with a typical Red state Republican, even former President Trump had complained that he has to take more of a MAGA worldview and isn’t in sync with the party. He even has the support of Republican Never Trumpers like Larry Hogan, the governor of a Blue State like Maryland who is considering campaigning for Youngkin and others
What do McAuliffe vs Youngkin Polls say about this?
The Latest Polls show Glenn Younkin performing better with Moderates and Independents compared to Trump which shows that Glenn Youngkin has successfully de-hyphenated himself from Trump in the eyes of many Swing voters and even some Democrats
Terry McAuliffe spent too much time and efforts trying to link Youngkin to Trump and the events on January 6th in the ads and the debates to repeat Biden’s performance in 2020 and turn college educated voters in Northern Virginia and Eastern Virginia against Glenn Youngkin . This strategy has not clicked with Most Virginians due to Youngkin’s moderate character.
Here is the latest ad from Terry McAuliffe
The Call | Terry McAuliffe for Virginia Governor 2021, October 14th
McAuliffe vs Youngkin Polls: Terry McAuliffe says Parents shouldn’t be telling schools what they should teach
Since the Biden administration took office , the Republican Party has been claiming that the Democrats were trying to propagate ‘Critical Race Theory’ in the country’s military and schools and worsening race relations by educating soldiers and children “through a lens of race”. This issue has galvanized conservative ideologues and politicians all across the country, including President Trump himself and is been used by Republican leaders to boost their turnout in 2021.
CRT was not a rousing issue in the Virginia Gubernatorial Race 2022 till the second debate.
In the second debate, Terry McAuliffe said he doesn’t believe parents should tell schools what to teach added another burning topic to the race and a kitchen-table issue for concerned parents to ponder over.
Whether this was a gaffe or not, this added weight to the claims of Glenn Youngkin and the Republican party that the Democrats want to teach CRT and poison race relations and indoctrinate American Kids against their own will and they grabbed this opportunity with both arms. This comment is now used in campaign rallies and ads by them.
What do the McAuliffe vs Youngkin Polls say about this?
The latest Fox News Polls says that 50% of voters believe parents should be telling schools what to teach their children. This includes 50% of Independents.
The latest YouGov Polls claim that 62% of voters will consider Virginia’s school curriculum on race and history as a major factor while voting
The Terry McAuliffe campaign too has realised that this issue could hurt him and has tried to clarify his comments, but it could be too late for him. Here is his latest campaign ad on this issue
Always | Terry McAuliffe for Virginia Governor 2021
McAuliffe vs Youngkin Polls: Not Dissociating from President Biden quickly enough
Unlike McAuliffe who has steered clear of President Trump, the McAuliffe campaign did not steer clear of Biden for a very long time. In fact, Jill Biden campaigned for McAuliffe last week.
The Democratic Party, a few months back thought that Biden’s 10-point victory in the state and passing the $ 1.2 Trillion Infrastructure Bill and the $3.5 Trillion Reconciliation Bill could help the party and Biden’s campaigning would boost them. Then the tumultuous withdrawal from Afghanistan happened and Biden’s ratings started to crater and go down.
Even Terry McAuliffe had to acknowledge in a virtual event which he thought was private that President Biden had become unpopular in Virginia. Yet the campaign event with Dr. Jill Biden
Terry McAuliffe is in serious trouble not just by changing political environment but due to mistakes by the Campaign. Glenn Youngkin’s campaign team has proven to be extremely agile and focussed in their attacks on Terry McAuliffe. At the end, that could be the difference.
Author: Anant T