Tags: virginia | election | governor | ralph northam

Democrats' Dream Candidate Can't Crack Rural Voters in Virginia

Democrats' Dream Candidate Can't Crack Rural Voters in Virginia
Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam (Daniel Lin/AP)

By    |   Friday, 03 November 2017 06:04 PM

The Democratic candidate in Virginia's gubernatorial election seemed like the perfect candidate for the party, but he is facing an uphill battle when it comes to securing rural voters' support.

According to Politico, Ralph Northam's internal polling numbers show he is trailing Republican Ed Gillespie by as many as 13 points. The problem, reports the website, is Northam's inability to gain support in the state's rural areas.

Northam is the current lieutenant governor of the state and hails from Nassawadox, Virginia, a town of fewer than 1,000 people on the eastern shore. He served in the Army as a medical officer and has worked as a pediatric neurologist since leaving the service in 1992.

Among Northam's problems politically, at least in the eyes of Democrats, are his decision not to take a stance on the construction of a pipeline in his state and not spending enough time and money in Virginia's rural areas — the latter being a crucial piece of the puzzle.

Matt Morrison of Working America, the AFL-CIO's political wing, told Politico both Gillespie and Northam lost to their primary opponents in Virginia's rural areas.

"Enthusiasm on both sides is low," Morrison said ahead of next Tuesday's election.

Gillespie spokesman David Abrams told Politico, "Ralph Northam has yet to offer any substantive vision to address the challenges facing rural Virginia. Northam's inattention and bad policies will make things worse in some of the most economically challenged areas of the commonwealth."

RealClear Politics shows that Northam leads Gillespie by an average of 2.8 points in various polls.

The Democratic Party is still licking its wounds from Hillary Clinton's defeat in last year's presidential election. Clinton was accused of not dedicating the proper resources to several states and not visiting them down the stretch when it mattered most.

Democratic National Committee chairman Tom Perez has been touring the country and giving speeches in an effort to heal the party, although that has come with its own controversy. For example, he falsely claimed that the Electoral College is not a product of the Constitution during a college lecture.

Top Democratic Party donors are reportedly unhappy with Perez's efforts to fix the party's problems.

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The Democratic candidate in Virginia's gubernatorial election seemed like the perfect candidate for the party, but he is facing an uphill battle when it comes to securing rural voters' support.
virginia, election, governor, ralph northam
362
2017-04-03
Friday, 03 November 2017 06:04 PM
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