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Biden Faces Big Trouble in Virginia

Posted on Tuesday, May 28, 2024
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by Shane Harris
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53 Comments
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As a result of President Joe Biden’s continued polling woes, several states previously considered out of reach for former President Donald Trump may now be in play this November. One of the most intriguing is Virginia, where Governor Glenn Youngkin’s victory three years ago proved Republicans can still be competitive statewide.

According to recent internal polling released by the Trump campaign, Biden is leading Trump 40 percent to 37 percent in Virginia with third-party candidates included, and 48 percent to 44 percent in a two-way race. If those findings are accurate, it would mark a stunning turnaround for Trump after Biden carried the state 54.4 percent to 44.2 percent in 2020.

During an appearance on Fox News last week, Youngkin likewise asserted that Trump has a real opportunity to flip the state. “In 2021, Virginians made a decision for common-sense conservative leadership,” he said. “Virginians like it, and they see the economy that Donald Trump built in his previous presidency… they want more of it. They want leadership.”

Virginia was once a solidly Republican state, with the GOP presidential nominee winning there in every election but one between 1952 and 2004. But exploding growth in the suburbs outside of D.C. slowly began turning the state from red to purple.

In 2008, Barack Obama carried the state, ushering in a Democrat resurgence in the Old Dominion. He won there again in 2012, and Clinton and Biden expanded upon his margin of victory in 2016 and 2020, respectively.

Democrats simultaneously began wrestling control of the state government away from Republicans, in 2019 winning control of the governor’s mansion and both chambers of the legislature  for the first time since 1991. The liberal party also won four out of five gubernatorial contests from 2001 to 2021, leading many pundits to believe that the state had become solidly Democrat and was set to only get bluer.

But that year, Youngkin, a former business executive, shocked many political insiders by becoming the first Republican elected statewide in Virginia since 2009, defeating former Governor Terry McAuliffe on a platform of lower taxes and opposition to left-wing ideology in education. Republicans Winsome Sears and Jason Miyares also won races for lieutenant governor and attorney general, respectively, and the GOP retook control of the House of Delegates.

Youngkin’s victory gave Republicans hope that the right political environment and candidate could still produce a GOP victory in Virginia. Since then, he has remained popular, with 53 percent of Virginians saying they approve of the job he is doing as governor in the latest Roanoke College poll.

Nonetheless, Democrats have re-asserted themselves in the state, winning back control of the House of Delegates and holding the senate in the state’s midterm elections last year. Since then, Youngkin has been locked in a number of high-profile battles with Democrat leaders, but has retained his positive image with the public.

The same Roanoke College poll also found Biden’s approval rating in Virginia to be a shocking 33 percent – down nine points from the previous May. Just 35 percent of respondents said they had a positive view of Biden, while 61 percent said they had a negative view of the president – up from 37 percent in the same poll back in 2020.

Notably, Biden still led Trump in the Roanoke College poll, 47 percent to 43 percent. Trump also had low positivity ratings – exactly matching Biden’s 35 percent.

But the fact remains that Biden is moving in the wrong direction in Virginia with less than six months to go until Election Day. Moreover, multiple polls have now found that Trump has good reason to believe he can compete in the Old Dominion.

If the Trump campaign does make a serious play for Virginia, Governor Youngkin will likely be instrumental in those efforts. His victory in 2021 and continued popularity means he could be an influential ambassador for the former president, helping rally support from Republicans and independents.

Trump will also likely have to follow Youngkin’s model of winning suburban voters in northern Virginia and around Richmond to win the state. These swing voters have inched leftward in recent decades but turned out for Youngkin in 2021.

The dynamics of the 2021 race present more reason for optimism in Trump’s camp. While Youngkin ran a strong campaign, a significant portion of the 2021 swing to Republicans in Virginia was undoubtedly due to backlash against Biden’s policies, as the Afghanistan debacle was still fresh in the minds of voters, along with sky-high gas prices, mounting inflation, and the border crisis.

Since then, all of those factors have only gotten worse, and Republicans have an even stronger argument to make with Biden actually on the ballot.

Even if Trump does not manage to secure a victory in Virginia this November, forcing Democrats to commit resources to a state Biden won by 10 points four years ago would still be a win for the former president in the broader landscape of the race. Every dollar Democrats feel compelled to spend in Virginia is another dollar they aren’t spending in true swing states like Pennsylvania and Nevada, where Biden is struggling mightily.

Shane Harris is a writer and political consultant from Southwest Ohio. You can follow him on X @shaneharris513.

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John TeGrotenhuis
John TeGrotenhuis
15 days ago

You are continuing to ignore the fact that the elections, plural, were stolen in 2020 and 2022. All of the mechanisms are still in place plus non-citizen now.

Richard
Richard
15 days ago

Oh, c’mon! Cottage-cheese-for-brains Biden is going to have trouble EVERYWHERE! Only turkeys and sheep will vote for him.

Thinking
Thinking
15 days ago

If there is an American voter anywhere that still supports ole Joe and thereby the Dems and left wingers like the Squad and deep state I am sorry to say America is lost for all time. What person in his right mind supports the dems platform. To make America a global communist country. That is subservient to the elites of Davos and China. Come on people it isn’t ole Obiden you are voting for it is a total regime change. What they accuse Trump off they have been doing all of it for the past 4 years. Wake up America these polls are not to be believed. Remember the red wave of 2022 that the polls forecasted. Vote for saving America not destroying it. WHAT HAVE THE DEMOCRAT REGIME DONE FOR AMERICA AND AMERICANS THE PAST 4 YEARS. Save America.

Westhus092
Westhus092
15 days ago

Youngkin’s success was also due to his embrace of the parental rights issue in schools, which was a brilliant move on his part. Virginia is actually 2 states: A) DC suburbs-NOVA and Tidewater and B) the rest of the state. The difference between the two is that the DC suburbs and NOVA include those ‘gubment workers’ who suckle at the teat of the public employment grift, yet create nothing except perpetual power for public service unions and an endless supply of indoctrinated Communist drones. I hate to say it as a native Virginian now living in exile, but the only way to make Virginia competitive again is to move the U.S. Capitol out of DC.

KCJ
KCJ
15 days ago

The only real question is whether the Dems will be able to again steal the election.

John
John
15 days ago

American’s can see for themselves every single day that the Totalitarian Communist Fascist DEMOCRAT party is a threat to there Freedom’s and especially there pocket books.
Every Democrat needs to be voted out of office to send a clear message to all politicians that we are no longer going to stand for there Tyranny!

BandidoNomad1%er
BandidoNomad1%er
15 days ago

The only way Pres Trump is going to win this fall is for his voters to overwhelm the Biden cheating system.No excuses this time around, ALL conservatives need to vote!!! If this does not happen, our great country will be lost to Marxist commie views and control FOREVER! VOTE please!

Melinda
Melinda
15 days ago

I don’t understand how anyone watching Biden speak could actually think he’s presidential or vote for him.

Rik
Rik
15 days ago

It just shows you how stupid many people are who would rather pay double for gasoline, food and utility costs because they are told that Trump will destroy America’s economy but the proof is the absolute the opposite! One has only to remember your youth and all the dumb kids who grew up as dumb Democrats!

Lisa Skinner
Lisa Skinner
14 days ago

Trump 2024

Robert Zuccaro
Robert Zuccaro
15 days ago

Because I can see him doing it, Biden reminds ne of Leslie Nielsens character from Scary Movie 3 where he mindlessly reads a butt dialed teleprompter… life imitates art!

invictus
invictus
14 days ago

I don’t believe any poll which puts the much-despised, abnormal, and racist Joe Biden in the lead of anything whatsoever.

uncleferd
uncleferd
15 days ago

Well, I’ve said it before… nothing says you’re stupid like a Biden yard sign. I’ve noticed he seems to stand a bit more “erect” at the podium…. Symbolism of sorts, I suppose….

Socratic Thought
Socratic Thought
12 days ago

Trump was beginning to expand the roster of swing-states with VA, MN & NH before his trial ended. Now post verdict we see that the Bidenistas’ lawfare blunder has “awakened a sleeping giant” in the person of Trump’s base. All bets are off.

David
David
14 days ago

Please remember these numbers are within the margin of error. We aren’t out of woods yet.

Randall L. Beatty
Randall L. Beatty
15 days ago

Biden and Harris will never win they show bad in the polls and it will get worse for them, no matter how they try to stop President Trump they will not he will turn this country around and we all need that.

Jana Bradley
Jana Bradley
12 days ago

If people keep insisting that the election is going to be stolen, that will only encourage people to stay home and not vote. We have to overwhelm them at the polls, and that means getting your friends/family off the couch to vote.

jimm
jimm
14 days ago

Trump may not take VA, northern VA is heavily democrat. However this news should play well for Republicans in Congress.

Neil Gipson
Neil Gipson
15 days ago

Buyden$ always getting in trouble over big Virginias!

Joe from LI
Joe from LI
11 days ago

The Virginia GOP is gutless. They wont restore the Confederate monuments that were taken down. The hell with them.

Joe Blow
Joe Blow
12 days ago

Every dollar Democrats feel compelled to spend in Virginia is another dollar they aren’t spending in true swing states…” Sure, but won’t that mean that Republicans are spending money in a state they probably won’t win, instead of using it in swing states?

billj
billj
11 days ago

No hope of winning regardless of polls or repub+independent’s enthusiasm without a massive nation-wide harvest balloting initiative. Repubs have to match the dems. Plus the cemetaries are full of people who apparently voted Repub in life and now vote for candidate Biden who most resembles them and will likely join them soon …

Chris
Chris
11 days ago

My ENTIRE family – including democrats in my family – are now voting for TRUMP!!
There is no question in our minds now. This has gone way too far!! OUTRAGEOUS!!

Charlie22
Charlie22
11 days ago

President Biden will prevail in Virginia this year.

Charlie22
Charlie22
11 days ago

President Biden will defeat ex president trump on November 5th as he did in 2020. President Biden will prevail in the electoral college also.

fredwriter1961
fredwriter1961
12 days ago

Negro voter fraud is a big problem in many of our cities, Republican poll watchers must be vigilant in watching the polls in every colored district in the country,

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