According to a tweet from the Republican Governors Association, Virginia Gov.-elect Glenn Youngkin‘s shock victory over Democrat Terry McAullife on Tuesday is likely to reverberate in next year’s gubernatorial contests.
Tuesday’s tweet ominously tagged the leftist leaders in those states—all of whom face re-election next year, and all of whom could be equally at risk.
Of the 36 gubernatorial elections that will be held in 2022, these eight states stand out, the RGA said, as “Democrat-held states where Biden performed the same or worse than in Virginia.”
A Republican victory in each of these states in 2022 would bring the total of Republican governors from 27 to 35.
Several of those tossup states were considered battlegrounds won by former President Donald Trump in 2016 whose Democrat leaders exploited pandemic emergency orders to undermine state election-integrity laws and flip them in favor of Democrat Joe Biden last year.
But Biden’s leadership hasn’t done them any favors in securing their own re-elections. And Virginia’s bellwether election may be the biggest red flag yet in a veritable red-flag convention’s worth of warning indicators.
“The gubernatorial race was the marquee race of the year,” according to ABC News. “It was the first competitive contest since Joe Biden replaced Donald Trump in the Oval Office, and both men loom large over the race.”
I don’t buy this. My rank order list of what I think hurt McAuliffe:
1. Bad national environment (economy, COVID)
2. Schools-related issues
3. Lack of voter interest in “Trump Trump Trump” attacks
100. Anything to do with Congress https://t.co/veiWpVF81Q
— Josh Barro (@jbarro) November 3, 2021
If Virginia—where, according to the Associated Press, Republicans haven’t won “statewide office in a dozen years”–can overturn President Biden’s 10-point victory over Donald Trump in just one year, then every swing state is on the table for Republicans in gubernatorial contests and the Congressional midterms in 2022.
Bryan Lowry of the Kansas City Star reported that that “Democrats head into the 2022 elections harboring growing doubts about their ability to defend governor’s offices on tougher political terrain.”
According to Lowry, “nearly two months ago, Democrats viewed Biden as an electoral asset after he helped California Gov. Gavin Newsom stave off a recall attempt.”
“But Tuesday’s results,” he continued, “and Biden’s sinking approval ratings have led to questions about whether the president will be a drag on the party’s gubernatorial candidates in 2022.”