by Chris Ambrose
YESTERDAY’S RESULTS = Great news for Democrats in November!
Here is why:
Turnout in the Democratic Primary in Fairfax County was over 50% higher than it was in record gubernatorial turnout of 2009. Yes, that means Democrats are energized, but if you drill down it means much more.
First, the increase in turnout seems to be higher in Democratic stronghold precincts that are generally low-turnout in off years and primaries. Some of those precincts increased turnout by 100% from 2009. That means we should be able to expect in an increase in those come November.
Second, the reason for the increase is not related to a particular candidate. I was always skeptical about the idea that a particular gubernatorial candidate would double participation in the primary. That was never going to happen. But there is also, no question about it, the fact that primaries are good things to prepare candidates and get voters engaged early. Also, a larger portion of the new voters than the regular voters definitely came out and voted for Tom Perriello, but all indications are the while Northam’s margin was smaller with new voters, he still won them. In those precincts where turnout was up by 100%, Perriello did well, but he still only won them by small margins (compared to the huge increase).
That is because these new voters were not coming out so much for a candidate as AGAINST TRUMP. Many may have voted for Perriello, but their real motivation for voting was Donald Trump and it will be November when they can REALLY send Trump a message so THEY WILL BE BACK..
Finally, the last piece of good news is the Republican results. They are clearly divided. But, again, if you drill down it says a lot more.
The moderate Republicans who would have been Gillespie voters are clearly demoralized and stayed home, while it seems the pro-Trump / pro-Corey Stewart group is energized. It is unclear how much the close GOP gubernatorial race is due to the depressed turnout of mainstream Republicans versus the party’s energized base (I suspect primarily the former), but either bodes well for us — especially the former.
If Virginia Republicans sense that they need to pander to the base to get them out to vote, they will lose moderates even worse. If the problem is that the moderates in the Republican Party are just so upset at Trump and the actions of their legislators supporting him, it can only get worse for them between now and November and between now and 2018.
The bottom line is the Republican Party is demoralized, while our base is energized and will vote in November to send Trump a message!