Another week. Another poll.
Democratic President Joe Biden’s approval ratings continue to decline as Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin’s numbers continue to climb, once again reinforcing the massive influence federal politics has on the mood of the Virginia electorate.
RealClearPolitics continues to show Biden’s numbers eroding, his disapproval numbers averaging out at 53% and showing an 11 point gap from his favorable numbers. Meanwhile, Youngkin’s Morning Consult poll shows him at 57% approval ratings — ranking him 28th in terms of approval ratings among state governors — yet on par as the beneficiary of Biden’s mishaps in the White House.
Morning Consult: Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin's approval rating hits all-time high
Jan '22: 51/35 (net +16)
Apr '22: 53/35 (net +18)
Dec' 22: 55/34 (net +21)
April 23: 56/32 (net +24)
— InteractivePolls (@IAPolls2022) July 24, 2023
Virginia Democrats are pointing towards Virginia Beach — long a Republican stronghold — as their key to victory in 2023. From US News and World Report:
In the five presidential, U.S. Senate and gubernatorial contests since 2017, Virginia Beach has voted with the winner every time. And in the 12 such elections since 2008, the Democratic share of the vote in Virginia Beach has never deviated from the statewide Democratic percentage by more than 5.1 points and has usually trailed by only 2 or 3 points.
If there’s a model politician for Virginia Beach today, Rubin says, it would be someone like Sen. Mark Warner, a serious-minded Democrat and former governor who tends toward the ideological center.
“We’re sort of in the middle,” Rubin says. “We can go either way.”
After having excised candidates such as State Senator Chap Petersen from the Senate Democratic fold, such an argument is increasingly more difficult to make among a Virginia Democratic mantra of 40-week abortions, critical race theory, and DEI impositions in public education and state government.
Meanwhile, Virginia Republicans continue to emphasize their record on good governance and a “return to normalcy” after the Democratic test run of defunded police and unsafe communities.
Nevertheless, Biden’s lack of performance in Washington is dictating the political environment in Virginia — and that continues to be music to Republican ears.