Virginia Democrats have won both chambers of the state legislature, flipping the state House and holding the state Senate in a rebuke to Republican Gov. Glenn Youngkin.
With most results tallied, media outlets have called at least 21 seats in the 40-member Senate for Democrats, ensuring a majority. Democrats have also won at least 51 of 100 seats in the House. With some races still uncalled, both figures could inch higher.
Two years ago, Youngkin stoked a moral panic over "critical race theory" and narrowly won the governorship while his fellow Republicans ended a short period of Democratic control in the House. Had the Senate been up that year, it, too, likely would have fallen to the GOP, giving conservatives unfettered ability to enact Youngkin's agenda.
But 2021 proved to be an aberration, as Virginia's continued march to the left was just too much for Republicans to overcome. While the final breakdown between the parties in each chamber is not yet known, Youngkin will not be able to advance any of his priorities without bipartisan compromise.
Most importantly, it ensures that his proposed 15-week abortion ban will never get a vote. The twin defeats for Republicans are also likely fatal to any plans Youngkin might have had to stage a late entrance into the GOP's presidential primary, a possibility that the governor’s allies had talked up as recently as this week.
Youngkin will also be term-limited in 2025 (Virginia is the only state that limits its governors to a single term), so Democrats will have the chance to win back unified control of the state in just two years.
Correction: The first paragraph of this piece has been updated to reflect that Democrats, not Republicans, won the Virginia legislature. The number of seats Democrats have won in the state House has also been updated.