For the second straight Election Day, Fox News Radio brings TBAF President John Pudner to listeners throughout the country to explain how in the world the Virginia election is coming down to the wire after Joe Biden won the state by double digits one year ago. Links to today’s interviews (including this interview from Virginia where the election is being held) from coast to coast will be added to this blog throughout the day;
WTKS Savannah, GA - The Bill Edwards Show (first aired live 0712AM ET)
WSBA York, PA - Morning News with Gary Sutton (0748AM ET)
WLNI Lynchburg, VA - The Morningline (aired 0836AM ET)
WIMA Lima, OH - This Morning with Gordon Deal (0845AM ET)
KTTB Tyler, TX - The Glenn Beck Program (0852AM ET)
KURV McAllen, TX - The Sergio Show (0912AM ET)
WJR Detroit, MI - Late Mornings with Kevin Deitz (1005AM ET)
WHO Des Moines, IA (1037AM ET) - Need to Know with Jeff Angelo (1037AM ET)
What Happened to Erase McAuliffe’s Lead in Virginia?
McAuliffe’s sudden announcement the election was "not about Trump" seemed to shock even CNN, which reported he “has invoked the former Republican President perhaps more than any other political figure … The comment, which belies the fact that tying Republican nominee Glenn Youngkin to Trump has been a central political strategy for McAuliffe since the start of the campaign, represents a significant shift for the Democrat just days before Tuesday’s election.” (see CNN story)
This flip-flop was a recognition McAuliffe was not focused on issues that actually impact Virginians, and followed his disastrous debate response to Youngkin's argument that parents should be more involved in the decisions of local school districts. McAuliffe instead argued - in essence - it was none of parents business what their children were being taught. Related embarrassing local TV footage of McAuliffe footage showed McAuliffe claiming the unpopular (see Newsweek poll) Critical Race Theory was a fake issue but being unable to define it when asked repeatedly by a local reporter made him look even more out-of-touch with the Commonwealth he wants to once again run..
How Final 4-Instant Runoff incentivized Youngkin to be a better candidate, and a partisan primary incentivized McAuliffe to blow it in the general.
The partisan Democratic primary incentivized McAuliffe to focus on spending millions simply attacking Trump to fire up his base primary voters, without developing any understanding of parents' concerns for their children’s education.
On the contrary, the Virginia Republican Party's innovative new instant runoff/ranked choice voting nomination process in essence incentivize Youngkin to become a consensus candidate by becoming the second choice of many Virginians who supported Minority Leader Kirk Cox for standing up against forcing Critical Race Theory, Pete Snyder and his incredible network of conservative leaders, and State Senator Amanda Chase for working for election integrity.
When one party creates a process that builds consensus around a Final 4 or 5 candidates, and the other party incentivizes running heavy attack TV ads to fire up the base, the former party is likely to produce the better candidate. If one state sets up a Final 4 or 5 system to let all voters form a consensus around a given candidate then they will likely produce better elected officials.
. Will Youngkin pull the upset?
Going through a “Final 4 - Instant Runoff” nomination process set Youngkin up to dominate the election and be in touch with more Virginians against McAuliffe coming out of a partisan primary. This played out in the last few weeks during which time all polling indicates voters are moving heavily to Youngkin based on believing he can handle education and even Covid better than McAuliffe. The only hope for McAuliffe is the possibility of winning a huge majority of the million voters who cast ballots before his implosion.
McAuliffe lacks two other advantages most Democrats enjoy. Virginia is a Voter ID state which helps ensure the person casting a ballot is the person on the registered voter rolls. Also, typically ActBlue and other Democratic sources give Democrats a huge money advantage - however Open Secrets reports that Youngkin was able to match McAuliffe with $57 million raised - a level playing field Republicans rarely enjoy anymore.
Links to Fox Radio Stations who interviewed Pudner will be added below as they become available.