WP: Election Puts Another Plank Across VA’s ‘Unbridgeable Gulf’

From Sunday’s Washington Post, this story about how last week’s election seemed to narrow the great divide in Virginia.  Here’s a taste:

It created quite a stir this fall when an adviser to John McCain made a distinction between Northern Virginia and "the real Virginia." But she wasn’t mocking. She was expressing faith that the Arizona senator would carry the state, as every GOP presidential hopeful has since 1964, on the strength of his appeal in the rural reaches.

But on Election Day, the Virginia that prevailed was the one carved into cul-de-sacs, office parks and six-lane highways.

Barack Obama’s victory was rooted not only in the blue-hued suburbs of close-in Northern Virginia, but also in Loudoun and Prince William counties, Richmond and its typically Republican-leaning outskirts, the heavily populated and racially diverse area of Hampton Roads that is home to both parties’ core constituencies, traditionally black enclaves and college towns such as Charlottesville.


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2 Responses to WP: Election Puts Another Plank Across VA’s ‘Unbridgeable Gulf’

  1. It was interesting to see how Virgina has changed over the past 10 years. It is now likely going to be a competitive state as elections go, for many election cycles to come. This is probably a good thing for Virginia considering the extra attention the state will now get.

  2. Some more detailed perspective from Daily Kos:

    Don’t look now, but Virginia did some serious blue-ing the past two cycles:

                    2004         2006        2008
    U.S. Senate    2R-0D        1R-1D       0R-2D
    U.S. House     8R-3D        8R-3D       5R-6D
    State Senate  24R-16D      23R-17D     19R-21D
    State House   60R-38D-2I  57R-40D-3I  54R-44D-2I
    President     54R-45D                  46R-53D

    We’ve gone from zero Senate seats to holding both, from a five-seat deficit in the House delegation to a single-seat edge, from an eight-seat deficit in the state Senate to a two-seat majority, and from a 22-seat hole in the state House to a 10-seat deficit.

    Meanwhile, there was a 16-point swing in the presidential vote.

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