Republicans jolt Biden with win in Virginia, close race in New Jersey

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Virginia Republican gubernatorial nominee Glenn Youngkin speaks during his predetermination nighttime enactment astatine a edifice successful Chantilly, Virginia, U.S., November 3, 2021. REUTERS/ Jonathan Ernst

FAIRFAX, Va., Nov 3 (Reuters) - Republicans pushed Democrats retired of the Virginia governorship and were moving adjacent successful heavy Democratic New Jersey connected Wednesday, signaling occupation for President Joe Biden's enactment heading into adjacent year's legislature elections.

Republican Glenn Youngkin, a erstwhile backstage equity executive, claimed triumph implicit Democratic erstwhile Governor Terry McAuliffe successful Tuesday's ballot aft distancing himself conscionable capable from erstwhile President Donald Trump to triumph backmost moderates who had supported Biden conscionable a twelvemonth ago.

In New Jersey, Republican challenger Jack Ciattarelli and incumbent Democrat Phil Murphy were locked successful a virtual draw, adjacent though registered Democratic voters outnumber Republicans determination by much than 1 million. Still, Democrats clung to anticipation due to the fact that much votes were owed to beryllium counted successful their strongholds.

Both saw beardown gains successful the suburbs from autarkic voters who had been turned disconnected by Trump's benignant of politics. The results successful states that Biden won easy successful 2020 suggested that Democrats' razor-thin majorities Congress were highly susceptible successful the 2022 elections.

Republican power of both, oregon adjacent one, enclosure of Congress would springiness the enactment the quality to artifact Biden's legislative docket during the last 2 years of his existent word successful office.

The results could besides further complicate Biden's hopes of passing duplicate bills worthy a combined $2.75 trillion to rebuild the nation's roads and bridges, arsenic good arsenic bolster the societal information nett and combat clime change. They person already been held up by months of infighting betwixt Democrats' progressive and mean wings and the predetermination decision could permission immoderate moderates little consenting to backmost the big-ticket bills.


Youngkin, 54, declared triumph aft a run successful which helium focused connected parents' choler implicit schools' handling of COVID-19, arsenic good arsenic teaching connected contention and sex issues. He walked a good enactment connected Trump, taking attraction to not alienate the erstwhile president's hardcore basal without offering a full-throated endorsement of his mendacious claims astir wide predetermination fraud.

McAuliffe's efforts to overgarment his rival, a erstwhile main enforcement of the Carlyle Group Inc , arsenic a Trump acolyte fell level with voters astatine a clip erstwhile Biden's support ratings are astatine the lowest level of his presidency, according to the latest Reuters/Ipsos nationalist poll, conducted past Wednesday and Thursday.

"Together, we volition alteration the trajectory of this commonwealth," Youngkin told a rally successful Chantilly, Virginia, aboriginal connected Wednesday.

Republican legislature campaigns whitethorn travel Youngkin's exemplary of focusing connected civilization wars and promising to springiness parents much power implicit nationalist schools.

Youngkin leaned into the Republican Party's expressions of outrage implicit the treatment of systemic racism successful schools. He vowed to prohibition the teaching of "critical contention theory," a ineligible model that examines however racism shapes U.S. laws and policies, portion ignoring the information that Virginia schoolhouse officials accidental the taxable is not taught successful classrooms.

He drew crisp disapproval from Democrats erstwhile helium initially hesitated to denounce Trump's insistence that the 2020 predetermination was "stolen" from him, mendacious claims that person continued to rile Trump's supporters and led to a mob of them attacking the U.S. Capitol connected Jan. 6.

Youngkin said aboriginal that Biden had won legitimately, but past called for an audit of Virginia's voting machines, prompting Democrats to impeach him of validating Trump's predetermination conspiracy theories.

The Republicans besides appeared to erase the Democrats' 10-seat pb successful Virginia's House of Delegates, appearing to summation a 50-50 divided oregon possibly a one-seat advantage. The Republican candidates for lieutenant politician and authorities lawyer wide were besides starring their races successful Virginia.

Virginia Republicans picked Youngkin successful an antithetic normal format successful May, alternatively than by a statewide primary. That format was designed to prime a much mean candidate, alternatively than 1 much intimately allied with Trump.

Even so, Trump sought to assertion credit, thanking "my BASE" successful a connection for putting Youngkin implicit the top.


The New Jersey contention remained excessively adjacent to telephone arsenic dawn approached connected Wednesday. But a nonaccomplishment for Democrat Murphy would nonstop adjacent much chills done the Democratic Party, which has been incapable to walk Biden's signature authorities nationally contempt razor-thin majorities successful some houses of the U.S. Congress.

Murphy, 64, ran arsenic unabashed liberal, seeking to go the archetypal Democratic politician to triumph re-election successful New Jersey successful 4 decades.

Ciattarelli had faced an uphill conflict successful New Jersey, wherever Democrats heavy outnumber Republicans.

Ciattarelli, 59, is simply a erstwhile authorities legislator and concern proprietor who has criticized Murphy for requiring masks successful schools and day-care facilities. He campaigned connected cutting taxes and supporting instrumentality enforcement, but does not enactment banning termination -- an antithetic presumption for a Republican.

According to section media, Ciatterelli appeared with Trump astatine a "Stop the Steal" rally successful November 2020 successful which the then-president falsely claimed to person won the election.

Ciatterelli has since said that Biden won the predetermination fairly.

Reporting by Joseph Ax, Gabriella Borter and Jason Lange, further reporting by Andy Sullivan, Kanishka Singh and Daniel Trotta; Editing by Scott Malone and Kim Coghill

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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