Despite polls which showed Democrat Terry McAuliffe with a solid lead, it looks like he will eke to victory in the race for Virginia Governor. With 92% of the vote counted, he leads Republican Ken Cuccinelli, 46.8% to 46.5%. Libertarian Robert Sarvis garners 6.7% of the vote. Combined, the Republican and Libertarian get 53% of the vote. McAuliffe will be elected with 47% of the vote.
Just a few thousand votes separate McAuliffe and Cuccinelli. Sarvis received over 130,000 votes.
Cuccinelli, it should be noted, was out-spent at least 3-1 by McAuliffe. Outside Democrat groups amplified the funding disadvantage facing the Republican. By finally nationalizing the campaign and focusing on ObamaCare, however, he was able to come within a few thousand votes of winning. All in the face of a GOP Establishment that turned its back on him, a consultant class that misguided his campaign and GOP pundits and commentators who said for weeks he couldn’t win.
Yes, the libertarian cost Cuccinelli votes. The campaign, however, bears some responsibility for allowing Sarvis to gain traction.
This was clearly a very winnable race, in spite of what people say about conservatives or the government shutdown. The GOP abandoned Cuccinelli. And, Virginians certainly didn’t embrace Terry McAuliffe.