Virginia Elections: Hate Didn’t Work

Virginia is home to religious right figures like televangelist Pat Roberson and his Christian Broadcasting Network, Jerry Falwell Jr. and his Liberty University, pundit and failed political candidate E.W. Jackson, and the National Rifle Association. It is now a blue state.

For months before the state elections, many Virginia Republican candidates tried to distance themselves from the Trump administration. But as Nov. 5 drew closer, many candidates and the Virginia Republican Party veered to the right and launched hateful attacks to stir up support among what they believed to be their base of conservative voters. With Tuesday’s earthshaking election results in the former Confederate state, it’s clear that right-wing fear-mongering tactics didn’t work.

Virginia Democrats flipped both the state House and the state Senate, winning control of both chambers for the first time in more than two decades. Democrats picked up at least two Senate seats, and another five in the House. A few close races are still undecided, but Virginia is now blue with Democrats in control of the House, the Senate, and the governorship and positioned to pass legislation on reproductive rights, fix the state’s voting laws, which are among the worst in the nation, and advance other progressive agenda items. Notable wins include Democratic Delegate Kelly Fowler, who overcame racist attacks, and Democratic Delegate Danica Roem, who overcame anti-LGBTQ bigotry.

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