Looking for New Voter Trends in the Old Dominion

Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin speaks at the grand opening ceremony for Amazon HQ2 on June 15, 2023 in Arlington, Virginia. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Two months from today, voters in Virginia will decide control of the commonwealth’s narrowly divided House and Senate. Republicans control the 100-member lower chamber by four seats, while Democrats have a similar advantage in the 40-seat Senate.*

Both are very much up for grabs.

The race is rightly understood as a referendum on the leadership of Republican Gov. Glenn Youngkin. A recent poll from Roanoke College shows the term-limited Youngkin to be popular even as Virginians decisively favor Democratic President Biden in a potential rematch with former President Donald Trump. He enjoys an 18-point favorability advantage over Trump and 5 points over Biden. 

More significant for November’s contest though, is Youngkin’s 7-point edge in job approval over the Virginia General Assembly. If the election really is a referendum on the governor, that’s a good augury for Republican chances.

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