Dem stronghold of Fairfax County not insurmountable for Republican Youngkin in Va. race, says expert

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Fairfax County — the most populous county in Virginia that went overwhelmingly for President Biden in 2020 — may not be enough to stop Republican Glenn Youngkin’s gubernatorial campaign, according to an election forecasting expert.

Cook Political Report editor David Wasserman said in a tweet that “Youngkin has an excellent chance to win #VAGOV w/ a coalition very different from the last time a Republican won statewide (2009).”

He added, “That year, Bob McDonnell ‘won’ Fairfax County. Youngkin doesn’t even need to hit 35% there to win tomorrow.”

In 2009, Republican Bob McDonnell won the governor’s race as part of a GOP statewide sweep that included Bill Bolling winning lieutenant governor and Ken Cucinelli winning attorney general.

Mr. McDonnell barely won Fairfax County when he beat Democrat Creigh Deeds for the governor’s mansion.

Mr. McAuliffe, in a final campaign pitch Monday night, tried to fire up Democratic voters in Fairfax County to get out the vote on Tuesday.

Fairfax County, which voted for Joseph R. Biden by 70% in 2020, is Virginia’s most populous county and grew over the last 10 years at a rate of 6% to 1.15 million people.

This election cycle, the county became a focus of interest when county election board officials overwhelmingly called on Gov. Ralph Northam to waive the signature requirement on absentee ballots that were cast by mail as was done during the 2020 election.

The 2020 provision was previously a statewide emergency pandemic measure but was lifted at the end of June. However, Fairfax County’s state of emergency remained in effect.

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