The Weekly Ringer

The University of Mary Washington Student Newspaper

College Republicans celebrate Youngkin’s victory in Virginia governor’s race

3 min read

Glenn Youngkin won the 2021 Virginia Governor’s race. | @glennyoungkin | Instagram

by WILLIAM LAWSON

Staff Writer

Since Republican gubernatorial elect Glenn Youngkin defeated former governor and Democrat Terry McAuliffe in the highly competitive Nov. 2 election, members of UMW’s College Republicans club reacted to Youngkin’s win and commented on the changes they hope to see under his leadership. 

Youngkin’s victory marks the first time a Republican has won the Virginia governor’s race in over a decade. President Joe Biden easily carried Virginia by ten percentage points in the 2020 presidential election. While Youngkin’s win signifies a troubling defeat for Democrats, many in the GOP are celebrating.

Olivia Mallory, a freshman criminal justice major, expressed relief over the outcome of the election.

“My initial reaction to the outcome of the governor’s election was relief because it was so close for so long and to finally know who won gave me a great feeling of ease,” she said.

Mallory also stated the issues that she hopes the governor-elect will address.

“I expect Youngkin to address the problems of big government and hopefully allow more individual choice when it comes to education, vaccination, etc.,” Mallory said. “Personal freedom is a value that he and I share and I’m hoping that he preserves this.”

Darcy Spicer, a senior political science major, also weighed in on what she expected Youngkin to address.

“When it comes to Youngkin, I am expecting him to address fiscal issues that affect Virginians daily,” said Spicer. “The grocery tax, for example, is something that he has promised to eliminate, and I hope to see just that. I hope to see Youngkin do his best to help Virginians fiscally.”

Spicer attributed Youngkin’s victory to poor campaigning by McAuliffe and the way he addressed parents’ roles in schools.

“Rather than point to his own achievements while in office, McAuliffe’s campaign focused on vilifying Youngkin and comparing him to Trump,” said Spicer. “In addition to his terrible campaign, McAuliffe also did poorly when addressing his comments regarding parents and schools.”

Hayden Webb, a senior computer science major, was surprised at Youngkin’s victory.

“Youngkin had come out of nowhere and, early on, severely trailed McAuliffe in the polls,” he said. “I saw the results of the vote as it was being counted and knew that Youngkin was probably going to lead early on during the voting.”

Webb stated that he was most passionate about state education. He credited Youngkin’s victory to his willingness to rectify the issues facing Virginia public schools.

“Teachers are treated poorly, paid poorly and overworked by their administrators, who focus more on forwarding their own political agendas than improving the schools they are charged to administer,” Webb said. “With Glenn Youngkin at the helm of Virginia, I believe that he will make Virginia public schools a place where students are happy to learn and teachers are excited to teach.”

Webb specifically cited scandals, including the incidents involving sexual assault and clashes between parents and school board officials, facing Loudoun County Public Schools as the main reason for Youngkin’s victory.

“Most of all, over everything else, I would credit Loudoun County Public Schools towards Youngkin’s victory,” he said. “There have been major scandals there which have highlighted the problems in the public-school systems across Virginia, serving as a catalyst to mobilize everyday parents into voting for Youngkin, who had promised to rectify them, while McAuliffe did not.”

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