Speed Reads

youngkin v mcauliffe

GOP pollster Frank Luntz predicts Glenn Youngkin will likely prevail in Virginia election

It's election day in America and the country can't take its eyes off Virginia, where Democrat Terry McAuliffe and Republican Glenn Youngkin are in a neck-and-neck fight to become the next governor of the historically-blue commonwealth, CNBC reports.

The race has become somewhat of a bellwether for the national political attitude and a harbinger of what's to come in 2022 midterms, when Democrats' control of Congress is up for grabs. However, though it's of course still early, well-known Republican pollster and strategist Frank Luntz predicts there's "about an 80 percent chance" that Youngkin prevails against McAuliffe, per CNBC.

"The Democrat is the incumbent and it looks like the incumbent is going to lose," Luntz told Squawk Box. The current Democratic governor of Virginia can't run for re-election because he can only serve one term consecutively. McAuliffe previously served as governor from 2014 to 2018.

Luntz explained that of the four times in the last 50 years that the minority party "won the House from the incumbents," Virginia predicted the outcome with 100% accuracy. That is is "why everybody's watching it so closely," he said.

Whatever happens, The Washington Post's Greg Sargent believes the Virginia election has highlighted the "communications imbalance" between Democrats and Republicans, in which the GOP can fire up and communicate with its base directly via right-wing media while Democrats otherwise struggle. "The Democratic Party needs to figure out ways to more actively court its base voters on a regular basis," strategist David Turner told Sargent. Read more at The Washington Post.