Polls indicate a tie between McAuliffe, Youngkin in statewide race likely to have national impact
With only 13 days until election day in Virginia, the gubernatorial showdown between former Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe and Republican nominee Glenn Youngkin is at a standstill, according to a new poll.
McAuliffe and Youngkin both make up 46% of Virginia registered voters, according to a Monmouth University poll released October 16-19 and released Wednesday.
This is a change from Monmouth’s September and August surveys, which looked closely at statewide races with potential national implications, when McAuliffe held a 5-point lead.
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The new poll indicates that increased support for Youngkin among independents is a major factor in GOP nominees, even with McAuliffe in line. Youngkin topped 48%–39% among independents, compared to 46%–37% for the former governor in Monmouth’s September election.
In addition, promoting Youngkin has resulted in increased support for female voters, the survey indicates. McAuliffe’s 52%-38% lead among women in September dropped to 47%-43% in the latest survey.
The survey also shows that geography is at play — Youngkin has extended his already huge lead in West Virginia — the redest part of the state — while McAuliffe’s big lead in heavy-blue Northern Virginia has slipped slightly. The new survey indicates that McAuliffe retains single-digit advantages in the Tidewater and Richmond/I-95 areas of the Commonwealth.
“Suburban women, especially in northern Virginia, have been key to the big victories Democrats have enjoyed in the Commonwealth since 2017. However, their support is not registering at the same level this time. The issue is due to change. It is important for these voters and partly to dampen enthusiasm among party loyalists,” said Patrick Murray, director of the Monmouth University Polling Institute.
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The poll also suggested a change in voters’ preferences, with 45% saying jobs and the economy are the top issues, up from 39% in September. Education and schools – at 41% – are now the second most pressing issue, up ten points from last month. Coming COVID fell 11 points from September to third place with 23%.
The new survey indicates that Youngkin – who defended the right of parents as the closing theme of his campaign when dealing with their children’s education – has attracted McAuliffe even when she is trustworthy to handle education and schools. . And the poll indicates Youngkin now has a slight edge over McAuliffe on jobs and confidence in the economy.
The vote was taken in the wake of a major verbal omission by McAuliffe. During the second and final debate between the two candidates, McAuliffe said, “I don’t think parents should be telling schools what they should teach.”
The Youngkin campaign and other Republicans helped make the clip viral.
“McAuliffe’s big lead on her competitiveness in her handling of Covid and economic issues last month helped propel her in this race, but Youngkin debated using her opponent’s words on parental involvement in the school curriculum The conditions have been able to change. Voters’ attention to that issue. Not only has it eaten away at Democrats’ past gains on education policy, but it has also raised doubts about McAuliffe’s ability to handle the pandemic,” Murray said. said.
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Virginia and New Jersey are the only two states that have held gubernatorial contests in the year following the presidential election, ensuring they attract attention from coast to coast.
Voters in the Commonwealth have long had a tendency to defeat the gubernatorial candidate of the party that controls the White House. McAuliffe broke with that tradition with his election as governor after Obama was re-elected in 2013. McAuliffe was unable to run for re-election in 2017 because Virginia’s governors have been barred from serving two straight terms.
Close competition in Virginia—a once-major battleground state but still a competitive state seen as a key bell ahead of the 2022 midterm elections—has National Democrats on the edge as they battle their razor-sharp leads in the House of Representatives and Senate. Thin defend the majority. in next year’s competitions.
The new poll, like other recent polls, points to the gains of enthusiasm among GOP voters. By a margin of 79%-72%, Republicans indicated that they were more motivated to vote than Democrats.
McAuliffe put the press in a full court, asking Democrats to cast ballots in the current early voting period, or to go to the polls on Election Day.
One way is to bring in top Democratic surrogates. First Lady Jill Biden campaigned with McAuliffe on Friday and voting rights advocate Stacey Abrams, the former Georgia House Democratic leader who made history in 2018 as the first black female gubernatorial candidate for a major political party, accompanied her on Sunday. Team up for the stop.
Vice President Kamala Harris stumps with McAuliffe on Thursday, and former President Barack Obama will campaign with McAuliffe on Saturday. McAuliffe also said twice in the past week that President Biden would join her. But the position of the president in the Commonwealth continues to slip, and the new poll stands at 43% approval and 52% disapproval.
The survey also indicates that McAuliffe’s favorable rating has dropped from 40% favorable and 33% unfavourable to 39%-39% in the past month. Youngkin’s rating of 41% favorable and 29% unfavorable is relatively unchanged from September.
The Monmouth University survey questioned 1,005 registered voters in Virginia found an overall sampling error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.