Speed Reads

Elections 2021

Biden on Democrats' loss in Virginia: 'We all have an obligation to accept the legitimacy of these elections'

President Biden spoke Wednesday afternoon regarding the COVID-19 vaccine for kids ages 5 to 11, but questions of course turned to other matters, including the news of the day — Republican Glenn Youngkin's defeat of Democrat Terry McAuliffe in the Virginia governor's race, a highly-watched outcome that's been positioned as a bellweather for the national political attitude and a sign of (mis)fortune to come.

"We all have an obligation to accept the legitimacy of these elections," Biden said when asked about Democrats' upsetting loss in a state Biden had previously won. "I was talking to Terry to congratulate him today — he got 600,000 more votes than any Democrat ever has gotten."

"What I do know is," Biden added, "people want us to get things done," which he is why the president says he's working hard for the passage of the bipartisan infrastructure framework and his Build Back Better agenda. "People are upset and uncertain about a lot of things," he went on, and if his and the party's initiatives are passed, a lot of those things will be "ameliorated quickly and swiftly."

That said, however, the president is "not sure" it would have made a difference in Virginia if his agenda had been passed before Election Day on Tuesday, considering the number of "very conservative folks who turned out in red districts who were Trump voters, but maybe, maybe."

The president may have won the state by 10 points in 2020, but "I was running against [former President] Donald Trump," he said.

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