DemDaily: Tuesday’s Election Results! Virginia and New Jersey

June 9, 2021

In yesterday's Virginia Democratic gubernatorial primary, Terry McAuliffe sailed to victory, winning virtually every county in the Old Dominion.

News organizations called the primary win for "The Macker," an attorney, entrepreneur and former DNC Chair, just after polls closed last night at 7:00pm.

The 64 year-old moderate beat four Democratic candidates to secure the nomination, including progressives former State Representative Jennifer Carroll Foy and Senator Jennifer McClellan, who both sought to become the first woman and the first Black woman elected Virginia governor.

Dem Governor Results (New York Times)

In the contest for Lt. Governor, State Delegate Hala Ayala, who represents Prince William County, won with 39.1% of the vote, followed by Delegate Sam Rasoul (Roanoke) at 25.3% and State Delegate Mark Levine (Alexandria) with 11.7%.

Norfolk City Councilwoman Andria McClellan garned 11.1%, followed by attorney Sean Perryman with 8.5% and lobbyist Xavier Warren with 4.4%.

Two-term incumbent Attorney General Mark Herring once again won his party's nomination, over challenger Delegate Jay Jones (Norfolk) 56.6% to 43.4%.

In the Virginia House of Delegates elections, where Democrats currently have a 55 to 45 majority, five incumbents lost their seats to primary challengers.

Ayala, 47, who is of Afro-Latina, Lebanese and Irish descent, would be the first woman of color to hold statewide office (Steve Helber/AP)

Among Democrats, Delegate Ibraheem Samirah (D-Fairfax) narrowly lost to Irene Shin, 52% to 48%, and in Portsmouth, left-leaning challenger Nadarius Clark bested centrist Delegate Stephen Heretick 46% to 42%.

Manassas Delegate Lee Carter, who was also running for Governor, lost his seat to small-business owner Michelle Lopez-Maldonado, 38% to 44%.

Delegate Mark Levine, who was simultaneously running for Lt. Governor, lost his primary with 41% to Alexandria Vice-Mayor Elizabeth Bennett-Parker's 59%.

In the GOP primaries, Patrick County lawyer Wren Williams, who argued on behalf of President Donald Trump during 2020 vote recounts, ousted 14-year incumbent Delegate Charles Poindexter (Franklin).

The strong turnout, the state's second highest for Governor, bodes well for Democratic enthusiasm in the post-Trump era. Roughly one fourth of the voters, 120,325, cast their votes early under Virginia's expanded early vote period. That represents a 78% increase in early voting over the 2017 primary.

GOP gubernatorial nominee Glenn "Trumpkin" Youngkin has pledged to spend $75 million of his own money (newsfinale)

McAuliffe will face off in November against the Republican nominee, former private equity executive Glenn Youngkin, 54, who was chosen at the May 8th GOP convention.

McAuliffe wasted no time in tying Republican nominee Glen Youngkin to the controversial former President, who lost Virginia by over ten points in 2020, touting Trump's "complete and total endorsement" of the Republican newcomer. In his victory speech last night, McAuliffe said, "We cannot let Glenn Youngkin do to Virginia what Donald Trump has done to our country."

The rest of the GOP slate includes Lieutenant Governor nominee and former Norfolk Delegate Winsome Sears and Attorney General nominee and Virginia Beach Delegate Jason Miyares.

In New Jersey's Republican primary yesterday, former State Assemblyman (Hillsborough) and 2017 gubernatorial candidate Jack Ciattarelli handily beat three other candidates to win the GOP gubernatorial nomination.

(New York Times)

Ciattarelli, who ran unsuccessfully for the gubernatorial nomination in 2017, secured 49.4% of the vote, followed by Trump loyalist and  Hudson County church pastor Philip Rizzo, who garnered 25.9%.

Engineer Hirsh Singh secured 21.5% and former Somerset County Freeholder and former Mayor of Franklin Township  Brian Levin received 3.2%.

Lt. Governor: The Lt. Governor, who has yet to be decided by Ciattarelli, runs conjointly with the gubernatorial candidate.

Jack Ciattarelli will face Incumbent Democratic Governor Phil Murphy, who was unopposed in the Democratic primary. Current Lt. Governor Sheila Oliver will be running on the ticket again with Murphy.

A May 21-29, 2021 Rutgers-Eagleton Poll of New Jersey adults found, in a theoretical head-to-head, Governor Phil Murphy led Ciattarelli 52% to 26%.

Although Murphy (D) leads Ciattarelli (R) by significant margins in polling, no Dem governor has been reelected since 1977 (Seth Wenig, Julio Cortez/AP)

In the New Jersey State Senate, where Democrats currently hold a 25 to 15 majority, only seven of the 40 seats were contested.

In the General Assembly, where Democrats hold a 52 to 28 majority over Republicans, only twelve were contested.

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Kimberly Scott

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Resources: New York Times, Reuters, Washington Post, Roanoke Times, Virginia Public Access Project, Politico, McAuliffe Campaign, WSLW

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