Youngkin supporters say 'there is a spirit of optimism' as Virginia election results come in

Encouraging signs for Youngkin as voters turn out

National Journal columnist Josh Kraushaar joins Fox’s election coverage to discuss Virginia’s governor race.

CHANTILLY, Va. – Supporters of Virginia Republican gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin gathered at the Westfields Marriott as the polls closed on Tuesday and told Fox News that they were excited for the results, expecting the Republican to pull off an upset in the commonwealth, which went 10 points for President Biden last year.

“The energy is incredible, and there is a spirit of optimism, not just about winning, but also about the change in narrative in terms of issues that actually matter to Virginians,” Jack White, a former candidate for Virginia attorney general, told Fox News in the ballroom where Youngkin would speak later Tuesday night.

“It looks like we’re going to have a good night,” he added.

(Tyler O’Neil/Fox News Digital)

“I think we’re excited; I think we’re hopeful,” Ashley Allen, a resident of Henrico County, told Fox News. She noted that turnout seems higher than anticipated.

Ben Purnell described himself as “cautiously excited.” 


“It’s a very blue state, even though Youngkin’s had a lot of momentum,” he said, noting that when Biden’s approval rating went down, Youngkin’s poll numbers shot up. “Democrats have been the reigning party for a while and people want a change.”

(Tyler O’Neil/Fox News Digital)

Patti Hidalgo Menders, president of the Loudoun County GOP Women’s Club, predicted that Youngkin would win.

“I just feel it. I’ve talked to a lot of moderates and independents and even some soft Democrats,” Menders told Fox News. “The issues of schools and safety have driven voters to consider Youngkin.”

“I’m very excited,” Dishant Shah, a resident of Henrico County who ran for the board of supervisors in 2019, told Fox News. 

He described the struggles America is facing under Biden, from higher gas prices to people “who just don’t want to work” because they’ve been receiving “free money.” A first-generation immigrant and a physician, Shah emphasized the value of a strong work ethic. 

Shah also praised Youngkin for bringing up “parent’s issues” and “public safety issues.”

(Tyler O’Neil/Fox News Digital)

“I’m worried about my daughters,” he added, referencing the sexual assault inside a girls’ restroom in Loudoun County. He also noted that the two “pedophilia books” that parents have protested in Loudoun and in Fairfax counties are present in high schools in Henrico County, where he lives. 

“Youngkin made education top of the priority list, very different than every other Republican candidate,” Shah said. “That was very exciting.”

“This is history in the making,” Jonathan Avendano, a resident of Ashburn, told Fox News. “As Latinos, the Latino vote has been extraordinary for Glenn Youngkin. We’re going to see a huge impact.”

“We’ve been fooled a lot by the Democrats,” Avendano added, noting that “conservative values, education, and traditional families” encourage Latinos to support Republicans like Youngkin. “When we stand by our values, that matters the most.”

(Tyler O’Neil/Fox News Digital)

White, the former candidate for attorney general, also emphasized education issues. 

“So many Virginian families experience education directly in the home” due to the remote schooling during the COVID-19 pandemic, he noted. “The pandemic did something to the psyche of Virginians, when parents could see the impact on their children because of distance learning.”

White said that parents “want the best for their children,” regardless of political issues like critical race theory. He said that parents focus on “the delivery of high-quality education.”

He said he disagreed with Democrat Terry McAuliffe’s claim that concerns about CRT are a “racist dog whistle.”

“McAuliffe makes it a dog whistle by saying that it’s a dog whistle,” White said. “The issue is ensuring that we teach our kids how to think and not what to think.”

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