The Beltway Cocktail Party Circuit agree: Terry McAuliffe will “barely” be Virginia’s next governor. (More)
I barely got up this morning, barely climbed down from Árbol Squirrel, barely came into the mail room, barely ate all the macadamias Chef left out for my breakfast, and barely wrote this. So that’s why you’re barely reading it.
Here are the results from Virginia yesterday. Democrat Terry McAuliffe won the governor’s race by 2.5%. Democrat Ralph Northam won the lieutenant governor’s race by over 10 points. The state attorney general’s race is still too close to call. If Democrat Mark Herring’s 616-vote lead in the state attorney general’s race holds up, Republicans will be barely 0-3 at the top of the ticket.
To put that in perspective, lots of people in South Blogistan were grumpy Sunday after the local NFL team blew a 21-point lead and lost in overtime. They barely lost, just as they barely lost a few other close games this season. So they’re barely 0-8.
But that didn’t stop the Beltway Cocktail Party Circuit from declaring this Really Almost A GOP Win:
Most public polls leading up to Election Day had Terry McAuliffe coasting to victory, some by double digits, in the Virginia governor’s race. Instead he squeaked by, beating Republican Ken Cuccinelli by less than 3 percentage points.
The much-closer-than-expected outcome blunts the narrative that this was a clean win for Democrats going into 2014 and guarantees an intense blame game among Republicans about what might have put Cuccinelli over the top.
And of course top on Politico’s list of reasons for Republican Ken Cuccinelli’s almost victory: the Affordable Care Act. Yes, you’re reading that right. Cuccinelli made the election a referendum on repealing the ACA … and lost … and that proves the ACA is a political failure.
Don’t take Politico’s word for it. Fox News agrees:
With nearly all precincts reporting, McAuliffe was ahead with just 48 percent of the vote, to Cuccinelli’s 45 percent. Though McAuliffe previously held a double-digit lead, exit polls showed voters opposed to the federal health care law overwhelmingly backed Cuccinelli, helping him narrow the gap on Tuesday.
Or maybe the last-minute purge of 38,870 Virginia voters worked as Republicans intended. Just sayin’.
In Florida, Democrat Rick Kriseman won a 10-point victory over incumbent Mayor Bill Foster in St. Petersburg. Democrats also won big in St. Petersburg city council races, and in Cape Coral city elections.
Yes, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie cruised to reelection, but the Tea Party types despise him. That left the Tea Party 0-for-everything last night. Barely.
Good day and good nuts.