Voters in five states are heading to the polls today to cast ballots in state and local elections. But it’s the outcome in the Commonwealth of Virginia that may prove a bellwether for the big general election in 2020.
Voters in Louisiana, Mississippi, Kentucky, New Jersey and Virginia are making their choices for state and local offices. Virginia has been a reliable Republican state for 50 years, but it is now leaning blue.
Donald Trump lost the state to Hillary Clinton by 5% in 2016. The state assembly is almost evenly split. Republicans only hold a one-seat majority in both the House and the Senate.
Todd Gilbert is the majority leader in the Virginia House of Delegates. He said outsiders have spent big money in hopes of changing the balance of power in the commonwealth.
“The amount of money coming in mostly from the Democratic side—billionaires like George Soros and Tom Steyer, the environmentalist, and Michael Bloomberg are all pouring millions of dollars in Virginia races in trying to reshape our state and ultimately reshape the country,” Gilbert explained.
One week before Election Day, more than $82 million had been spent, making this the most expensive election in Virginia history.