Democrat leaders in Virginia conceded Friday that Republicans have taken control of the state’s House of Delegates, thus completing a sweep of the state’s elections this week after capturing the governorship, attorney general’s office, and lieutenant governorship.
“House Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn issued a statement acknowledging the GOP majority shortly after Democratic Del. Martha Mugler conceded defeat in a tight race against Republican challenger A.C. Cordoza in the 91st House district, located in Virginia’s Hampton Roads region,” The Associated Press reported. “With Mugler’s concession, Republicans now expect control over 51 seats in the 100-member chamber.”
In a statement, Filler-Corn said in part:
We spent this election cycle talking about the issues we championed and highlighting the tremendous progress we have made while in the majority. Unfortunately, the headwinds were too strong, and the maps drawn by the previous majority presented a challenge that was too great to overcome. …
While the results of the election were not in our favor, our work for the people of Virginia goes on. I will work to provide a smooth transition for the incoming speaker, and our Democratic caucus will work with the new majority in the House of Delegates and the governor’s administration to serve the best interests of all Virginians.
Republicans dominated elections in the state on Tuesday night with Glenn Youngkin winning the race for governor, Winsome Sears winning the race for lieutenant governor, and Jason Miyares winning the race for attorney general.
The New York Times highlighted how Democrats were decimated in small towns throughout the state:
In 2008, there were only four small Virginia counties where Republicans won 70 percent or more of the vote in that year’s presidential race. Nowhere was the party above 75 percent. This year, Mr. Youngkin was above 70 percent in 45 counties — and he surpassed 80 percent in 15 of them.
“Look at some of those rural counties in Virginia as a wake-up call,” said former Montana Democrat Governor Steve Bullock. “Folks don’t feel like we’re offering them anything, or hearing or listening to them.”
“It’s not sustainable for our party to continue to tank in small-town America,” said Rep. Cheri Bustos (D-IL). “We’ve got a branding problem as Democrats in way too many parts of our country.”
Democrat political strategist James Carville slammed the party’s embrace of far-left policies, saying that “wokeness” lead to Democrats getting decimated across the country.
“What went wrong is just stupid wokeness. Don’t just look at Virginia and New Jersey. Look at Long Island, look at Buffalo, look at Minneapolis, even look at Seattle, Wash. I mean, this ‘defund the police’ lunacy, this take Abraham Lincoln’s name off of schools. I mean that — people see that,” Carville said. “It’s just really — has a suppressive effect all across the country on Democrats. Some of these people need to go to a ‘woke’ detox center or something. They’re expressing a language that people just don’t use, and there’s backlash and a frustration at that.”
This report has been updated to include additional information.