Youngkin Might Have the Edge in Virginia Gubernatorial Election

The likelihood of Glenn Youngkin winning the Virginia governor’s election next week is looking better and better.

Terry McAuliffe is a longstanding Democrat staple seeking re-election to the Capitol building after serving one tenure from 2014 to 2018. He is now riding neck to neck with Youngkin, the former entrepreneur and political newcomer.

It’s Still A Tough One to Call

In what is now a blue state, it’s a difficult one to call; McAuliffe (who has brought in practically every liberal with a national presence in the last few days) might yet win.

However, a Youngkin win would be monumental. It would send quakes of fear through Democrats across the country, making the blue, leftist ideology that much harder to pass in the House and Senate.

A Youngkin victory would also point to a realistic route forward for the GOP in swing regions, one that keeps Trump’s foundation while trying to regain lost territory with Independent voters and suburban voters.

To be fair, no election can be perfectly replicated, and contender caliber is important. Youngkin isn’t a once-in-a-generation politician, but he’s proven to be a skilled and persuasive candidate.

McAuliffe, on the other side, is one of America’s most fascinating figures. Bill Clinton will not really spend endless hours playing cards with you if you’re not amusing…but he has recently appeared drained, desperate, and terrified.

If Youngkin succeeds, his avoidance of Donald Trump will be a major element. You can’t remain anti-Trump and win the Republican primary in Virginia. However, you can’t win a statewide race by being pro-Trump or too publicly pro-Trump.

Youngkin negotiated this line with skillful footwork (gain Trump’s support, but don’t talk about him at all or invite him to the state) and by exerting enormous effort to portray himself as a separate entity.

Youngkin is Just a Nice Guy

He used to run mainly biographical advertisements, the kind that makes seasoned politicians roll their eyes. Youngkin served in a restaurant as a youngster; he practiced basketball until he got a scholarship.

The GOP gubernatorial candidate also operated a corporation; he raised four children and, of course, he is like a traditional politician.

Youngkin was chastised for running an issue-free campaign, but thanks to a flurry of bio ads, his response to the query “Are you pro-Trump or anti-Trump?” could be as simple as “I’m Glenn Youngkin.”

Youngkin wanted people to know this essentially translates to a nice-guy father. In his 2017 gubernatorial campaign, conservative Ed Gillespie took an arms-length strategy to Trump.

However, with Trump as president and the response to him running hot, there was no place for distance. Youngkin has the chance to build his own image.

He has taken full advantage of this chance, also. The fleece vest is to Youngkin what the red MAGA cap is to Trump: a casual, suburban, let’s-meet-at-Starbucks-after-the-kids’-soccer-game appearance.