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Democrats Are Freaking Out About a Huge Loss in Virginia

A fresh poll from Fox News showed Democrat Terry McAuliffe falling out of the lead in the high-stakes Virginia gubernatorial race.

SO WHAT

McAuliffe and his eminent Democratic allies don’t appear to be handling the pressure well.

THE POLL

According to the Fox News poll, released Thursday, McAuliffe, a former Virginia governor and longtime associate of the Clintons, is trailing insurgent Republican challenger Glenn Youngkin by eight points among likely voters.

While the poll was an outlier in giving Youngkin such a big advantage, a Washington Post/Schar School survey released Friday confirmed a consensus that the “blue state” race has tightened into a toss-up.

  • Also Friday, RealClearPolitics showed Youngkin ahead in its polling average for the first time.

THE REACTION

Democrats have have mounted a hurly-burly response to Youngkin’s rise that has only seemed to make things worse for McAuliffe — and raised fears that the party could be in for a nationwide reckoning.

1. A telling email snafu: After Fox News emailed the McAuliffe campaign Thursday for comment about its hiring of “a high-profile attorney known for masterminding election-related legal challenges,” spokesperson Christina Freundlich “replied all” by accident.

In another gaffe, McAuliffe recently made an awkward plea to Hispanic voters to quickly up their birthrate in order to help him politically.

2. Doubling-down against parents: Asked by CBS News’ Ed O’Keefe last Thursday how he would address parental concerns about “woke” school curriculums if elected, McAuliffe responded by dismissing the controversy as wholly “generated by Glenn Youngkin.”

McAuliffe and his allies, including former President Barack Obama, have been steadfast in treating opposition to gender ideology and critical race theory in schools as fake outrage bordering on bigotry.

  • But Republicans have bet Youngkin’s pro-parents stance on the issue is a winner.

3. Speaking of fear mongering: President Joe Biden, stumping for McAuliffe in Virginia Tuesday, jumped the shark on the whole calling-your-opponents-Nazis thing, suggesting Youngkin, a Northern Virginia private equity executive, was the alt-right in disguise.

Democrats have been banging home this message and making much of Youngkin’s backing from Trump World, though the former president will not be appearing with the candidate in the end.

4. Meanwhile, Emotions have also been running high in the McAuliffe clan.

NOTHING TO LOSE

On the other hand, Youngkin and his supporters have been projecting confidence about an upset victory and and looking forward to the 2022 midterms.

“Terry McAuliffe is doing exactly what the playbook that he wrote as the godfather of the modern-day Democratic Party would do,” Youngkin told Fox News host Sean Hannity Thursday. “The big thing is, this race has become a national race. … It’s going to send a [shot] across the bow for the entire country that we’re going to take our country back.”

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