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Virginia: Harbinger or Outlier?

In what Democrats surely will tout as a repudiation of Donald Trump and his politics, a tidal wave swept through Virginia last night, sweeping into office both Ralph Northam and the first transgender person to hold statewide elected office.  The highest voter turnout in twenty years for a gubernatorial election would seem to imply that the Democratic base has been energized by last year's presidential election. Is that a surprise? 
Republicans will belittle the result.  The governor's mansion was already in Democratic hands.  It's not uncommon for midterm elections to swing away from the results of the previous national election, they will say.  They will argue that northern Virginia's increasing political sway and the influence the federal government has there taints the electorate and disproportionately favors Democratic candidates. However, Virginia, along with the few other states that still can be swung from election to election, is important. Really important. A…

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