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Sunday, November 28, 2021

Election Day 2021: Republican Youngkin leads McAuliffe in Virginia governor’s race

Democrat Terry McAuliffe is hoping to win back the Virginia governor’s mansion on Tuesday, but standing in the way of a second term is Republican Glenn Youngkin’s surge in recent weeks. With more than 80% of the vote in, CBS News has characterized the race as likely Republican. 

According to exit polls, education and school curriculum — the two issues Youngkin has focused extensively on in the closing weeks of the campaign — were the top issues motivating Youngkin voters. Just over half of all voters said parents should have “a lot” of say in what is taught in their school, whereas 8 in 10 Youngkin voters said parents should have “a lot” of say. 

Mr. Biden and former President Trump both loomed large over voters, too, though, with over half saying Mr. Biden is a factor in the race. More Virginia voters disapproved of Mr. Biden’s performance as president, with 56% saying they disapprove and 43% saying they approve. Youngkin has tried to keep Mr. Trump at arm’s length, and Virginia voters, including Youngkin voters, continue to view him negatively. One in 5 Youngkin voters have a negative opinion of the former president. 

New Jersey‘s Democratic Governor Phil Murphy is trying to win a second term and buck the state’s trend against reelecting Democratic incumbents. A Rutgers poll released Tuesday had Murphy leading by 8 points. Polls closed at 8 p.m. in New Jersey.

There was an early victory for Democrats in heavily blue New York City, where Eric Adams was projected to defeat Republican Curtis Sliwa. Sliwa, a New York City celebrity who started the Guardian Angels in the 1980s, made headlines Tuesday morning by bringing his cat with him to vote. Poll workers told him he couldn’t bring his cat inside, and although he said “arrest me,” he did leave the cat outside, according to The New York Times.

Voters in Boston will be choosing between two women of color, which will be the first time the city will be represented by someone other than a White man.

In Buffalo, New York’s second-largest city, Democratic socialist India Walton defeated Mayor Byron Brown, who was seeking a fifth term, in the Democratic primary this summer. But Brown has launched a write-in campaign in the heavily Democratic city, and New York Governor Kathy Hochul and the Democratic party chair have declined to endorse in the race. U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer endorsed Walton, as did Senator Bernie Sanders and Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. 

In Minneapolis, the Associated Press projected voters rejected a controversial ballot question on policing, which asked residents to  amend the city’s charter by replacing the existing police with a public safety department that would prioritize a “comprehensive public health approach.” Since it failed, a new Department of Public Safety will not be crated.

Minneapolis has been roiled by protests since former police officer Derek Chauvin killed George Floyd, a Black man, by kneeling on his neck for nine minutes in May 2020. In April 2021, Chauvin was convicted of second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.

Clare Hymes, Adam Brewster and Aaron Navarro contributed reporting.

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