Moving the needle: Glenn Youngkin’s strategy to take back Virginia

by John Hanna

Op-ed by John Hanna | Photo: Alamy

Governor Glenn Youngkin, R-Va., is focused on ensuring the GOP wins state elections and turning Virginia entirely red from its blue-leaning tendencies. Youngkin is using an interesting strategy for the GOP, as the electoral map has notably shifted in some key states from 2020 to 2024.

Virginia is primarily a blue state, hence why the election of Republican Glenn Youngkin came as a surprise to many. Youngkin’s election as governor in 2021 moved the needle towards support for GOP candidates in Virginia, and now Youngkin wants more for Virginia. 

Youngkin’s election was a big step forward for the GOP in breaking Virginia’s long-standing position as a liberal state. If the GOP wins the elections for the Virginia state legislature, Youngkin will be able to pass more conservative bills into law

Virginia also can act as an indicator of what is to come on the national stage. According to Virginia Democratic party chair Susan Swecker, “Trends [in Virginia] tell us a lot about the next year, whether it’s in Virginia or nationally.”

If the GOP wins the Virginia state legislature, this could signify a silent majority pushing back against a vocal minority. 

In one Twitter video, Glenn Youngkin encourages GOP voters to sign up for the absentee ballot so the GOP does not “go into [elections] down thousands of votes.” This is a valid point by Youngkin, as early voting ensures more votes are cast and collected. 

Youngkin’s strategy was meant for his home state of Virginia but can also be applied to national elections. Good campaigns reach the voters themselves, making their voices heard. Youngkin was able to clinch a surprise gubernatorial victory in 2021; there is no reason it cannot be repeated with the Virginia state legislature.  

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