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Barack Obama warns of Republican threat to democracy in US battlefield Virginia

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Party chiefs hope Barack Obama will inspire black voters, a key Virginia constituency.

Richmond:

Former US President Barack Obama on Saturday urged voters to support the Democrats in the general election to be held as a test of the party’s prospects in next year’s midterm elections.

Democrat Terry McAuliffe, who is vying for a second term as governor of Virginia, has seen his lead come to an end in recent elections and is in a dead heat with Republican Glenn Youngkin ahead of the November 2 vote.

Obama told a crowd of several hundred ardent supporters at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond that Youngkin would cut teaching jobs, restrict access to abortion and support Donald Trump’s fraudulent campaign to convince Americans that the previous election was President Joe. was stolen from him by Biden.

“As far as I can tell, the big message from Terry’s opponent is that he’s a regular guy because he wears wool. And he’s accusing the schools of brainwashing our kids,” Obama said.

“He has also said that he wanted to re-audit the voting machines used in the last presidential election. Really? Encouraging the lies and conspiracy theories that we have to live by this time? And yes, we have to believe Should he be going to stand up for our democracy?”

The McAuliffe camp fears the election after a year could reduce turnout among supporters and has brought some of the party’s heavy hitters into the final phase, including First Lady Jill Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.

Biden won Virginia by 10 points in 2020 and the last time a Republican won a statewide race was in 2009.

But the McAuliffe-Youngkin battle has hardened, with a poll released this week by Monmouth University evaporating the Democrat’s earlier lead.

McAuliffe’s victory would fuel Washington Democrats’ dual infrastructure and social welfare mega-bills that are the cornerstone of Biden’s approach to rebuilding the economy.

But a loss could scare moderates already nervous over the high price tag, which they are trying to reduce from about $5 trillion in total to nearly $3 trillion.

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Party chiefs hope Obama, still the most popular Democrat on the national stage five years after leaving office, will inspire black voters in Virginia, a major constituency.

“I am here today because I believe Virginia will make the right choice. I believe America will eventually make the right choice,” Obama told a crowd of a few hundred enthusiastic supporters.

“I believe you’re going to show the rest of the country and the world right here in Virginia that we’re not going to indulge in our worst instincts. We’re not going back to the past that did a lot. Damn, we’re going to go ahead and lead people like Terry.”

The first real competitive election since Biden took office is expected to be a harbinger of the national political landscape ahead of next year’s midterm elections.

Located in northern Virginia between the Washington suburbs, a Democratic stronghold, and the conservative south and southwest of the state, Richmond can go either way.

McAuliffe, 64, has tried to make the race a referendum on Trump, who has been impeached twice.

Youngkin, his 10 years his junior, has focused the fight on schools, Republicans railing against mask mandates and running ads telling McAuliffe he doesn’t want parents to get involved in education.

‘Resurgence of Trumpism’

In a delicate high-wire act, Youngkin is trying to assuage Trump’s sentiment, while not exclusively supporting his false election fraud claims, which are supported by most Republicans.

The former president has not visited, although he did call at a pro-Yangkin “Take Back Virginia rally” on October 13, which was attended by former White House adviser Steve Bannon and other prominent promoters of Trump’s election fraud.

McAuliffe, who took the stage before Obama, pledged to work with “reasonable Republicans” to improve the lives of Virginians.

“I’ll work with you, but let me make one thing completely clear today. Glenn Youngkin is not a proper Republican. I call him Donald Trump in khakis,” he told a crowd of a few hundred.

“Do we want Donald Trump to be our governor here in the Commonwealth? No, we don’t.”

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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