Virginia rejects 'Trumpism' as Democrats score major governorship wins

Virginia rejects 'Trumpism' as Democrats score major governorship wins

One GOP operative made clear that the outcome was stunning. And now he watched the "Trump-Stewart talking points" lead nowhere. What could be more Trump?

Democrat Ralph Northam has beaten Republican Ed Gillespie in the race for Virginia governor after a bruising election that tested the power of Donald Trump's fiery nationalism against the energy of the Trump resistance.

Northam's daughter, Aubrey Northam, is a graduate of the university of Virginia.

Trump and the GOP apparently were using Virginia as a test lab. They wanted to see if Trump's race-baiting political playbook, updated to include the local issue of Confederate statues, would work to flip a state that Trump lost by 5 points last November. Eleven of those 16 pickups were won by women candidates.

The Gillespie campaign carpeted the state with advertising that warned about MS-13, a gang tied to immigrants from El Salvador, claiming that any move to shield immigrants from deportation through so-called sanctuary cities would invite violent predators into Virginia communities. "I'm shocked, too", one veteran Republican legislator told the Richmond Times-Dispatch after conceding his race. "The special elections that we've had so far have been incredibly slanted to the conservative side", said Ezra Levin, co-founder of the liberal group Indivisible, which had hundreds of volunteers and a handful of paid staff on the ground in Virginia.

The GOP will also nominate some out-and-out Trumpians. Instead, in the final months of the campaign, Gillespie remade himself as a demagogue, playing on white racial resentment. "Ed Gillespie did not embrace me or what I stand for", the President tweeted, once the results were in.

PFAW spokespeople are available to speak with the press.

The exit polls tell a very different story.

They added a governor in New Jersey and protected an open seat in Virginia.

"I don't know how you get around that this wasn't a referendum on the administration, I just don't", admitted U.S. Rep. Scott Taylor, R-Va., as the magnitude of the night began to sink in. The Democratic mayors of New York and Boston, both vocal Trump critics, also won re-election easily.

In the meantime, Republicans needs to accomplish more in Congress, starting with tax reform. "Terry McAuliffe did a spectacular job four years ago, and they did that much more".

Compounding the Republican woes in Virginia, Democrats also won contests for lieutenant governor and attorney-general. When Trump backed the House effort to repeal-and-replace Obamacare (having no plan of his own), he responded to its passage by declaring the bill to be "mean" - as though he hadn't previously claimed it was nearly without flaw. "Republicans who continue to embrace him can start the countdown on their political careers". It was a sign: Most Virginians may dislike the president and his demagoguery, but Virginia Republicans craved it. Gillespie would deliver. What's even more pathetic is that a man with a stellar reputation and good name such as Gillespie threw it in the gutter to try to win on the backs of white grievance.

People For the American Way is a progressive advocacy organization founded to fight right-wing extremism and defend constitutional values including free expression, religious liberty, equal justice under the law, and the right to meaningfully participate in our democracy. And Trump himself on Tuesday night demonstrated once again that he feels no personal loyalty to fellow Republicans. Assuming the state legislature doesn't step in, Maine will become the 32nd state to expand Medicaid.

In Virginia, as in several contests across America on Tuesday, the Trump resistance won.

Ralph Northam has a history in medicine, specifically in pediatrics and neurosurgery because of his time serving as a medical officer in the United States Army. He attended the Virginia primaries and was able to celebrate the victory there with his father earlier this year. The one promise that he may end up keeping - ironically, the biggest promise of them all - is his pledge to thoroughly shake up Washington and to reshape America's political landscape.

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