In a statement, Mr McAuliffe compared Mr Youngkin to other Republicans who are “snooping all over Donald Trump” and “fully embracing his far-right agenda,” adding: “Now Glenn Youngkin has paid enough to buy the governor. republican. nomination so he can run Donald Trump’s dangerous playbook here in Virginia.
Republicans have not won a statewide election in Virginia since 2009, reflecting the changing demographics of the state as well as the party’s tendency in recent years to nominate candidates who have stoked social issues that divide, rather than appealing to suburban voters on kitchen priorities.
The thudding that Mr Northam administered to his Republican rival in 2017 was both a rejection of Mr Trump and a catalyst to push further Virginia, a once-purple state, out of Republican orbit. Mr. Trump lost Virginia by 10 percentage points in November.
Still, Republicans believe they have a better chance of winning statewide this year than at any time in the past decade, after Democrats, who took full control in Richmond in 2020, took passed sweeping liberal legislation on gun restrictions, raising minimum wages and other issues. .
Mr. Youngkin, 54, grew up in Virginia Beach and has lived in Northern Virginia for 25 years. As well as defeating Mr Snyder, a tech entrepreneur, he also outlasted State Senator Amanda Chase, who was censored in a bipartisan vote by the State General Assembly for calling the rioters of the Capitol on January 6 of “patriots”.
Ms. Chase’s supporters accused Snyder’s supporters in the state party of rejecting a Saturday primary and engineering “disassembled convention” to hurt her chances. Ms. Chase had said that if he became the candidate, she would run as an independent. There is no indication that she intends to do this with Mr. Youngkin leading the party ticket, which will also include candidates for lieutenant governor and attorney general.
Many GOP insiders breathed a sigh of relief that the gubernatorial nomination was not won by Ms Chase, believing her general election candidacy would have been likely to ignite given how badly Mr Trump was. is unpopular in Virginia.