Running on schools and virus fighting did NOT work Terry McAuliffe ….
And Newsom IS the sitting Governor…
Democrats thinking of running on the two above things should think twice….
(Biden’s new virus ‘mandate’ has a testing safety valve in it)
And of course?
Youngkin was able to use Trump for his turnout and not let him blur his campaign ….
Virginia voters do NOT know what Youngkin actually will be for them….
They know ole’ Terry ran a lousy campaign…
‘All Politics is local’, eh?
In the heady days after Gov. Gavin Newsom decisively defeated a recall attempt, some pundits and politicos came to believe Newsom had offered Democrats elsewhere a road map to victory. The winning recipe: Don’t run away from stringent coronavirus rules, but lean into them as a way to distinguish yourself from Republicans who would imperil public health. Then ladle on a healthy serving of Donald Trump comparisons to galvanize your base and turn moderates against your GOP opponent.
But those ingredients mixed up a bitter cocktail of defeat for Virginia Democrat Terry McAuliffe in his quest to again inhabit the governor’s mansion. McAuliffe ran ads touting his pandemic-related school orders and pummeled Republican rival Glenn Youngkin for taking the opposite position. He did his best to anchor Youngkin to Trump, but in the end, McAuliffe still lost a state that Democrats have increasingly seen as reliably blue territory….
Obviously, the Newsom recall and McAuliffe’s defeat occurred in different states and different circumstances. Blue trend notwithstanding, the Commonwealth is not as Democratically dominated as California, and a conventional head-to-head gubernatorial matchup is far different from a special recall election in which the incumbent can raise unlimited funds — both factors that lent Newsom steep numerical and financial advantages.
The state’s pandemic response may also no longer have the same political potency. Exit polls showed Virginia voters cared more about the economy and schools than about the coronavirus, even as they believed McAuliffe would do a better job with the pandemic than Youngkin. Pre-recall polls showed Newsom’s Covid approval rating and his campaign standing were nearly identical, suggesting the two were inseparably linked.
BUT THAT WAS THEN: “The sense of the Delta surge as a major issue in everybody’s experience, every day was much higher in August than it was in November,” Newsom campaign aide Sean Clegg told us. “We caught and surfed that wave. It probably didn’t present the same messaging opportunity” in Virginia.
And while Trump still casts a long shadow over the Republican Party, not every candidate can be caricatured as a Trump ally or ideological extremist. Team Newsom got a gift in libertarian talk show host Larry Elder’s emergence as the Republican frontrunner, elevating statements and beliefs that were out of sync with many California voters and that Newsom was happy to broadcast. Youngkin kept the focus on bread-and-butter issues….