Democrats Hold Slight Leads In Virginia

By John Celock

A new poll shows that while Democrats lead in all three statewide race in Virginia, the races remain close.

A University of Mary Washington poll released earlier this weeks shows Democratic Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam leading Republican Ed Gillespie 44 percent to 39 percent in the race to succeed term limited Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D). The race remains in the margin of error.

Polling throughout the year has shown a tight race or slight edge for Northam in the contest to be Virginia’s next governor. The poll this week confirms that Northam is on track for a big win in Democratic heavy Northern Virginia, while Gillespie has a large lead in the Republican western parts of Virginia. The other parts of the state remain a closer battle between the two.

The Virginia governor’s race has become the key battleground race of 2017, with Democrats holding large leads in the New Jersey governor’s race and the New York City mayor’s race. The gubernatorial battle comes amid a continuing changing dynamic of Virginia into a large swing state.

The UMW poll shows that Gillespie holding a 39 percent to 30 percent lead among independent voters. The poll also shows that Gillespie is holding 90 percent of President Donald Trump’s supporters from last year, while Northam holds 86 percent of Democrat Hillary Clinton’s supporters from last year.

In the race to succeed Northam as lieutenant governor, Democrat Justin Fairfax leads Republican state Sen. Jill Vogel 45 percent to 40 percent. In the attorney general’s race, Democratic Attorney General Mark Herring leads Republican John Adams 47 percent to 40 percent.