Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam (D) released two new TV ads on Tuesday.
One features the mother of a victim of the 2007 Virginia Tech shooting saying Northam “agreed to take on the NRA” while representing “a conservative district.”
The other focuses on jobs and education, including his call for free commnity college. (release)
POLL TESTED. Former RNC Chair Ed Gillespie (R) leads Prince William County Supervisors Chair Corey Stewart (R) and state Sen. Frank Wagner (R) in the primary 38-18-15%, according to a new Washington Post-Schar School poll (May 9-14; 264 Republican LVs; +/-7%). Gillespie “enjoys stronger support in nearly all regions of the state and among various demographic groups than either of the two other Republican candidates. … Six in 10 likely Republican voters see Gillespie as the most electable in the November general election compared with his rivals.”
President Trump’s “approval rating among all Virginia residents is 36 percent. … 52 percent strongly disapprove” of his job performance.” (1,602 adults; +/-4.5%) (Washington Post)
Northam leads former Rep. Tom Perriello (D) 45-35%, according to a new Public Policy Polling (D) (IVR + Internet) poll (May 9-10; 745 Democratic LVs; +/-3.65) conducted for the Virginia Education Association, which has endorsed Northam. Northam does better in Norfolk and Richmond, but the two are statistically tied in Northern Virginia.
“Northam and Perriello have equal amounts of name recognition, with each candidate known to 65% of voters. … 58% of voters see [Northam] positively to 7% with a negative opinion, for a net favorability of +51. Perriello, by contrast, is at +41, with 53% rating him favorably and 12% unfavorably.”
“Northam is particularly strong both with African Americans and with seniors.” (release)
DATLELINE CHARLOTTESVILLE. Perriello on Monday “called for a state-wide commission on racial healing and transformation. Second, he said that it is time to retire the tradition of honoring Lee-Jackson day every year.” (WVIR)
“In a Facebook live event billed as Stewart’s first comment on Saturday’s torch-lit rally around a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee, Stewart did not directly mention Richard Spencer or other ‘alt-right’ figures involved in the white-pride event.” (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
“[O]ver the three months of the campaign, Stewart … has tweeted numerous times about issues that would appear to concern only the most entrenched neo-Confederate. … Though he lacks Trump’s money and universal name identification, two things Stewart’s leading opponent Ed Gillespie has a leg up on, Stewart thinks he can make up for it with outrageousness. This bold gambit is not something Stewart is ashamed of discussing.” (Politico)
BRING IN BACKUP. “White House press secretary Sean Spicer will headline a fundraiser for the Virginia Republican Party on Thursday at Trump National Golf Club.” (National Journal)
Prince Edward County Democratic Committee Chair Taikein Cooper, who had previously backed Northam, endorsed Perriello. (Blue Virginia)
FOR THE RECORD. American Bridge highlighted an interview on WMAL in which Gillespie said he has “a lot of friends, obviously, working in this administration - in the White House. … I will get my calls returned.” (release)
“A spokesman for Mr. Gillespie said the candidate writes his own tweets.” (Wall Street Journal)