WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2021
When voters don't turn out to vote: Last year, in November 2020, an election was held in Virginia.
The candidates were Biden and Trump. Candidate Biden won by ten points. Including votes for independent candidates, 4.46 million votes were cast.
Yesterday's turnout was much smaller, as is routinely the case in an "off-year" election. In yesterday's election, roughly 3.3 million people turned out. Candidate Youngkin won by two points.
How did we go from a 10-point Democratic win to a 2-point Democratic loss? In part, it concerns the million-plus people from last year who didn't turn out to vote.
More than a million of last year's voters didn't cast votes this time. Some of those previous voters have died. Most simply didn't turn out.
Now for human nature:
As a general matter, people who are dissatisfied with the status quo are more likely to turn out. In Virginia, the party that loses the presidential election has tended to win the gubernatorial race the following year.
Sure, you say. But how can we explain the sheer size of the change in this year's vote?
We can only tell you this:
(Rachel spent the next several years trying to get him locked up.)
That was a 23-point turnaround. This year, the turnaround was a much smaller twelve points.
Youngkin won by only two points. What might McAuliffe have done to squeak by?
We can imagine several things. As for the rest of our liberal tribe, we might consider "trying a little tenderness" a tiny amount of the time.
We might try name-calling Others less. We might even try Dr. King's admittedly silly "love ethic of Jesus," which John Lewis never abandoned.
We should consider the possibility of being less horrible people. After all, when we inform The Others of their obvious racism, you know how such "lessers" react!