Republican Glenn Youngkin has pulled ahead of Democrat Terry McAuliffe by eight points in the Virginia’s governor’s race, securing a sizable lead as the election stands less than a week away.
The latest Fox News Poll shows that Youngkin’s momentum has dramatically shifted over the course of two weeks, climbing up from a five-point deficit to take a commanding lead over McAuliffe – 53 percent to 45 percent among likely voters.
Just two weeks ago, Youngkin trailed McAuliffe, 46 percent to 51 percent. Fox News noted:
Likely voters are a subgroup of registered voters, identified mainly based on self-reported vote intention and interest in the election. Among the larger pool of registered voters, it’s a one-point race: McAuliffe 47 percent vs. Youngkin 48 percent. Two weeks ago, McAuliffe led among registered voters by 11 points, 52-41 percent.
The dramatic shift largely stems from McAuliffe’s position on education, which has been dismissive toward parental concerns regarding extremist views being pushed in the classroom, generating a spike in GOP enthusiasm. According to the poll, “79 percent of Youngkin supporters are ‘extremely’ interested in the election compared to 69 percent of McAuliffe supporters.”
Youngkin has pledged to ban Critical Race Theory (CRT) in Virginia schools, while McAuliffe has charged Republicans with creating a phantom enemy. In the final debate, McAuliffe even went so far as to say that parents should not be “telling schools what they should teach.” As The Hill noted, McAuliffe’s comments have proved to be a costly blunder that has mobilized suburban parents.
The Hill exclaimed:
Those 10 words – deserving of a top listing in the Hall of Fame of Political Blunders – may prove to be the turning point in a race in which McAuliffe was expected to cruise to victory, especially since Joe Biden won the blue state by more than 10 points on his way to the presidency in 2020.
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