Terry McAuliffe Wins The Democratic Primary For Virginia Governor

Former Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe (D-Va.) Is fighting in Charlottesville, Virginia on Friday. He took the opportunity to expand on the accomplishments of his first term. (Photo: Win McName / Getty Images)
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Former Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe (D) won the Democratic primary for the Governor of Virginia on Tuesday, giving him a rare second chance to run the state.
McAuliffe's victory is a relief to Democratic leaders, who see his nomination as the best chance of maintaining control of the party in Richmond, and a disappointment to progressives and some black Virginians looking for recruits.
McAuliffe meets Republican candidate Glenn Youngkin, a former private equity manager who promises to end “Terry McAuliffe's political dynasty”.
"McAuliffe's victory was fueled by the popularity of the name and the other candidates never consolidated," said Ben Tribbett, a Democratic political advisor in Northern Virginia.
McAuliffe defeated four Democrats to win the nomination: Senator Jennifer McClellan, former Del. Jennifer Carroll Foy, Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax and Del. Lee Carter.
With the chance to run the state alongside a democratic legislature, McAuliffe campaigned to increase teacher salaries, provide universal access to early childhood education, accelerate the implementation of the $ 15 minimum wage, and universal broadband internet coverage introduce and close racial economic differences.
Towards the end of his unilateral primary, McAuliffe began previewing his message against Youngkin, a business-friendly Republican from the upscale suburbs of northern Virginia who has nonetheless secured the support of former President Donald Trump.
"Let me be clear: Glenn Youngkin is not a reasonable Republican," McAuliffe said in the last televised debate on the Democratic primary. “He's an extreme, right-wing Republican. He's a loyalist to Donald Trump. "
Unlike Trump, Youngkin admits that President Joe Biden won the election despite putting in place an "electoral integrity" plan designed to appeal to evangelical grassroots fears of electoral fraud.
With regard to the parliamentary elections, Youngkin emphasizes proposals to reduce government regulations and taxes, which are in the middle by national standards.
"We're going to open up free enterprise," Youngkin said in a CNBC interview in May. "We're actually going to be investing in creating a business climate in Virginia that companies want to be in."
McAuliffe, a businessman, acolyte of the Clinton family and chair of the Democratic National Committee, ruled Virginia from 2014 to January 2018. He enjoyed solid approval ratings as governor and received praise from Liberals for restoring the voting rights of 173,000 former felons and vetoing the law. that would have restricted women's reproductive rights.
Much of McAuliffe's proactive liberal political agenda, however, failed because of Republican control over the state legislature.
With a democratic legislature, he can double what he did before.
US Senate President Louise Lucas (D)
The chance to rule with the backing of a democratic legislature - democratic control of the House of Representatives is likely and guaranteed in the state Senate - was an important part of McAuliffe's case for the candidacy.
"Terry has shown what he can," US Senate President Louise Lucas (D), a co-chair of the McAuliffe campaign, told HuffPost. "With a democratic legislature, he can double what he did before."
Since the Virginia constitution prevents governors from serving consecutive terms, this race was McAuliffe's first chance for a second term. If he wins against Youngkin in November, McAuliffe will become the first Virginia governor to serve non-consecutive terms since Mills Godwin. Godwin led the state as a Democrat from 1966 to 1970, and then as a Republican from 1974 to 1978.
McAuliffe's main rivals in the primary were McClellan and Carroll Foy. McClellan had a support base in the Richmond area but struggled to carve out an ideological niche and could not raise the funds necessary to compete seriously on the airwaves.
Carroll Foy became the progressive favorite, raising enough money to face McAuliffe on television. Carroll Foy even won the support of several unions excited by their promise to fight for the repeal of the state's "right to work," making it difficult for organized labor to thrive. (McAuliffe has privately admitted that he would sign such a repeal bill if it got on his desk, but didn't think it would ever pass the legislature.)
If successful, one of the two women would have been Virginia's first female governor and the country's first black female governor. And when McAuliffe entered the race in December, months after McClellan and Carroll Foy announced their offers, he had to endure criticism for jeopardizing the chance for one of the two black women in the race to make history.
But the good favors and relationships that McAuliffe had amassed during his first term as governor effectively neutralized these grievances. McAuliffe's main run had the support of a majority of the Virginia Black Legislature, including Lucas, and important leaders and ministers of the black community.
"He delivered earlier and will deliver again," J.J. Minor, a black community activist and former chair of the Richmond City Democratic Committee, told the HuffPost. "Indeed, Terry McAuliffe - I'd say I think he has some soul in him."
Glenn Youngkin, the Republican candidate for governor of Virginia, emphasizes tax cuts to appeal to moderate voters. McAuliffe insists that Trump's recommendation of Youngkin is toxic. (Photo: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images)
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In fact, McAuliffe maintained a massive lead over his main opponents practically from the start of his run.
Thanks to Virginia's lack of campaign cash limits and McAuliffe's sizeable Rolodex, McAuliffe raised more than $ 12.8 million to secure the Democratic nomination. He received six-figure donations from Facebook co-founder Sean Parker, private equity manager and Clinton colleague Ron Burkle, the campaign account of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), The unions LIUNA and AFSCME and the corporations Hulu, Instos and Cloud HQ.
The tidal wave of campaign money helped McAuliffe remind voters of his liberal achievements, reassure them of his credentials for the job market, and perhaps most importantly, implicitly argue that he is the Democrat best equipped to defeat the GOP.
"We have the largest and broadest coalition of all," he told Outlet Jewish Insider in March.
Eligibility was likely on the minds of the Democrats who re-nominated McAuliffe. Since 2019, the Democrats have controlled both the governorate and the state legislatures.
But it wasn't until 2013 that Republicans controlled all three of the state's power bastions.
And the last time a Republican won governorship in 2009 was, like now, the first year of a Democratic presidency, in which Republican voters are often more motivated than Democrats. The then Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell won the general election by 17 percentage points.
Virginia has shifted significantly to the left since then, but even with McAuliffe at the head of the vote, some Virginia Democrats believe that assuming governorship without Trump in office will be an aerial battle to motivate the Democratic base.
"I expect a very competitive general election with Glenn Youngkin because a lot of what has made Virginia so much bluer over the years is the energy among Democratic voters," said Tribbett.
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.

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