tv The Beat With Ari Melber MSNBC November 2, 2021 3:00pm-3:45pm PDT
as things get exciting, here's the plan. i will join my friends and colleagues rachel maddow and joy reid, and of course, steve kornacki just before that 7:00 p.m. eastern time poll closing in virginia. we will begin to get our first results, the vote count steve keeps talking about, of the noeth. until then, stay put because "the beat" starts right now. >> we have been watching and we will be watching you. thank you so much. >> thank you, my friend. >> absolutely. this is "the beat." i'm ari melber. you can hear the music. it is election night. steve kornacki is at the big board right now, as mentioned, tracking all of the results as we get them. exit polls and all of the voting. there are races in over 30 states tonight. there's battling for local office, special election, da, mayor, and a race for governor in two states. new jersey where polls close at
8:00 p.m., and governor murphy is trying it become the first democratic governor to win re-election in over 40 years and then of course, virginia, which may carry many political implications across the country, not just in that state, as terry mcauliffe and glenn youngkin battle it out. polls close there within the hour. now, it is election night, so we begin where else but exactly where we want to go when we think america wants to go, to the big board with msnbc's steve kornacki. take it away. >> as you say, inside of an hour, waiting for real votes between now and then. we have the exit poll. we have our first look at the electorate. folks who went out and voted today also included in the exit poll, folks who voted early, folks who voted by mail. a lot of different ways of voting these day. let's take you through some of what we're seeing. first of all, one of the stll questions for the backdrop of the governor's race, president biden. we talked so much about how the party that controls the white house has struggled in virginia governor's elections. what is joe biden's job approval
rating with virginia voters today? right now, this is what we're seeing, a 43% approval rating for the president. upside down. 56% disapprove. that actually tracks pretty closely to what we saw nationally in our nbc poll that came out on the eve of the election. nationally, we had biden at 42%. today, the exit poll right now is putting him at 43% in virginia. how about this one, though? terry mcauliffe and the democrats have been trying to make donald trump a front and center issue in this campaign. trying to attach trump in voters' minds to glenn youngkin, the republican. this is why they have been doing this. here's voters' view of donald trump in virginia. that is also extremely upside down, 41% favorable, 54% unfavorable. so is trump going to be more of a weight on youngkin or is biden going to be more of a weight on mcauliffe? one of the questions we're going to get answered when the actual votes coming in. also opinions of the candidates. youngkin in our exit poll clocking in over 50% in the favorable rating for him.
that is better than terry mcauliffe in this exit poll. he's clocking in at 44% favorable. i will note, the one time that terry mcauliffe got elected governor before in 2013, he did struggle with that favorable rating back then as well. he was able to overcome that in '13. we'll see if he's able to overcome that in '21. again, the countdown inside of 57 minutes. i expect shortly after 7:00, county officials have been telling us they have changed the process a little bit this year for reporting out votes. this thing should really start to come to life and light up right when 7:00 rolls around. >> and your bottom line there on the exit is very interesting to get the favorables. they tell you something but not everything. >> yeah, that's right. the other thing i caution on the exit poll is 5:00, we get our first look at it. there's going to be more data that's added to the exit poll. there are more interviews that are taking place as we speak that have been taking place, so more data is going to be added to that exit poll. i think about 45 minutes from now, so the numbers i showed you
could shift a little bit. that's one thing we'll look at, but the exit polls kind of take shape in waves. so we'll get another look at about 6:45 and then 15 minutes after that, maybe we can toss the exit polls aside because we'll have real votes. >> get to the real thing. a lot of insight and context so we thank you for that, steve. the only thing i ask is that you promise us, steve, don't go anywhere. >> i'm here. don't worry about that. >> okay. steve kornacki at and near the big board at all times. he walked through a lot of key numbers. polls are open, which means we emphasize we certainly don't know any results, but let's dig into that gap on favorability that steve mentioned. exit polling shows virginia voters do have a more favorable view of what is essentially a new republican than the democrat they already know who used to be governor. that 53% majority with a favorable opinion of youngkin, who is new to politics and pretty much introducing himself. 44% unfavorable. in contrast, 53% of virginia voters in the new exit polls tonight have an unfavorable
opinion of mcauliffe. only 44% with a favorable view of him. that could be mean a lot. it also gives us a picture of how some voters feel, whether they dislike the democrat and still pull the lever for him is completely possible. as steve mentioned, mcauliffe has never had favorable throughout the roof. this race has been nationalized. mcauliffe, the democrat, relentlessly trying to tie youngkin to trump. as "the new york times" put it in a closing article, they're fixating on how racial inequality is taught in schools on the right, and cultural issues. these are themes that have been channeled or echoed by voters that our own nbc teams have caught up with. >> important issue this year was education. >> schools. the issues that are going on in schools right now. >> the biggest issue is what we're doing about the pandemic. >> i believe mcauliffe hurt himself a lot with saying parents had no place to talk about education. that hurt him a lot. and that took away my support. >> big part of his pitch was that if you elect glenn
youngkin, you're electing another donald trump. did that work for you? >> absolutely. especially after the january 6th incident, i feel that anyone that has ties to him is a problem for our country. >> when you look at the attempt to paint youngkin as another donald trump, you know, it just doesn't wash. >> that's just some of what we're hearing from voters. the candidates also making their final pitches here as the polls are about to close. >> let me be clear, what we won't do, what we won't do is teach our children to view everything through a lens of race, where we divide them into buckets. >> donald trump wants to win here tomorrow night, so he can next day announce for president of the united states of america. we're going to put an end to donald trump's future plans right here in virginia. >> our special election night coverage begins with cecile richards, showtime's alex sabat
jansing live on the ground in virginia. we could start anywhere, but larry, what's the most important thing to understand about this special state with its special off-year race? >> well, in an off-year race like this, even when turnout is high, one party tends to show up disproportionately. when donald trump was president, the democrats showed up disproportionately. if, if the early exit poll is accurate, and i have been looking at exit polls since the 1970s, so we need to be cautious. they do evolve, as steve noted, they evolve throughout the night. if that is representative, then the democrats have a problem. no question about it. >> and we're a long way from making any calls here. that is done in the scientific process when the polls are open, but cecile, your reaction to what larry is saying he's seeing and what is that partial data? >> well, i think again, it's early to say, but clearly, women
are going to play a critical role, as they have every single cycle, particularly suburban women, and that's one of the things we have been focused on in american bridge, making sure they know what the biden agenda is, what's happening in washington. i think that the real hard thing here is that women are exhausted after four years of donald trump, and they're pretty much turned off by politics, and so getting turnout up is going to be critical. we'll see what happens here in virginia. i know it was interesting to see that the issue of access to safe and legal abortion and reproductive health care, something that governor mcauliffe was very strong on, was actually a very good issue for him, not a good issue for glenn youngkin. but all of these, i think all of this will be really instructive as we go into the midterms where again, suburban women and women in general will make the difference. >> let's make that point to alex. you followed a lot of races. trump is a short hand when it comes to women's issues, when it
comes to diversity, when it comes to a lot of these things. again, to show folks because people are busy and they may not have been following virginia all week or all month, here's exactly what mcauliffe and biden have been closing on which is making everything trump when it comes to the republican ticket in virginia. take a look. >> he's created hatred and division, just like donald trump. >> terry is running against an acolyte of donald trump. >> we don't want trump. we don't want youngkin. >> he won't allow donald trump to campaign for him in this state. >> would you rally with donald trump? >> he's not coming. >> what's he trying to hide? is he embarrassed? >> alex. >> yeah. it's a really awkward position that glenn youngkin is in, given the fact he wants to pull trump supporters into his voting public, but he doesn't actually want donald trump to come to the commonwealth of virginia. look, i mean, ari, the fact of the matter is terry mcauliffe has played the trump card repeatedly on the campaign trail. we have all seen him do it.
the question is whether virginia voters believe him. we know glenn youngkin's message on education is resonating. it's something that has brought large crowds to his speeches and campaign events. if you look at the exit polls, education is the number two issue. that is not usually what's happening. and youngkin has found a device that i think you will surely see in use in 2022, which is using schools as a locust for a host of cultural issues that republicans want to wage a cultural battle on. there in schools they can talk about the phantom critical race theory that is not actually taught, but they can attack liberal overreach on what they see as cultural and racial sensitivities. they can go after lgbtq issues, talk about charter schools. there's a number of things that prove useful in the sort of usually an adine topic of education. and you're seeing that resonate. this is going to be a close race, but i think youngkin is providing a really valuable playbook for republicans no matter who ends up winning this
tonight. >> chris, you're out there on the ground reporting. what are you seeing? >> yeah, whether you talk to voters or yesterday i went to two youngkin events. every single voter who is supporting glenn youngkin mentioned education. now, a lot of them did also mention the economy. they talked about the price of bread and milk. but it's clear that that's resonating. i should also say that when i talk to supporters of terry mcauliffe, what resonates with them is they don't want a return to the time of trump. but as one analyst told me, a republican who is supporting glenn youngkin, he said angry voters vote. and that was what he was hanging his hat on. i just got off the phone with the mcauliffe team. i asked them what they're seeing in terms of turnout. they said smib of the key areas for them, and i'm going to quote them, we're seeing ridiculously high turnout. way over the midterms. they said if they got that high turnout, when i was speaking to them yesterday, that they would
feel confident. tonight, what they're saying is, but we have to see who those folks are. going back to the whole idea that this momentum seemed to be with glenn youngkin. 1,000 people turned out here in blue louden county for him last night. they had to march across some fields at the county fairgrounds to get to his event. and they did it. they were buying t-shirts and hats. he brought -- got 200 to an airport in the middle of a monday afternoon. so that momentum is clearly there. but i would say that the nervousness and anxiety on the ground here is very high, ari. >> larry, you hear chris' reporting there, and what she was hearing from these campaigns, including the hedging on that turnout. what's your reaction? >> well, the hedging is appropriate because high turnout on its own means nothing. you have to know who it is that's turning out in major numbers. and as i looked around the
turnout figures this afternoon, it was pretty clear to me that while black turnout was higher than some democrats had feared, it certainly wasn't through the roof. and most of the places i looked at. whereas there is a pattern of quite high turnout in some suburban localities that democrats have won recently, but contain a lot of independent republicans who couldn't stand trump but may be looking for a way to return to the house of their mothers and fathers. so it's a very mixed picture, and i think chris is right about that. >> alex, what do you think about that? because of course, we just witnessed the national election, 2020, where the democrats led by biden spent a lot of time trying to make those republicans feel at home because they were up for grabs. what larry is suggesting, what chris is reporting is out there, is some of them may be less up for grabs if they don't believe the message we just discussed, if they have not actually accepted the idea that this
candidate equals trump. >> well, yeah. you couple -- look, you look at the national polling on biden. 71% of the country thinks that america is on the wrong track. 40% of the democratic party doesn't want to see joe biden add the top of the ticket in 2024. those are not good indicators for democrats. right? i think when it comes to republicans, one cannot -- let's remember, ari, joe biden didn't get -- i don't mean to be a rain cloud over the biden presidency, but joe biden did not get the nomination because he stoked the ardor of the democratic electorate. he became the nominee because he could coalesce the party and they thought he could beat trump. when trump is no longer on the ticket, do people come out to vote? do republicans feel the same necessity to come out and support the democrat. the anyone but trump strategy doesn't work when trump is not actually on the ticket. you might see some of that play out in virginia. the other thing i'll tell you from being in virginia and covering these events, glenn
youngkin, i went to an asians for youngkin event. the republican party is desperate not to be a white tent party. they have long thought their message of economic conservative and social conservative could resonate with the latin's x community, and some could resonate with the asian community. i'm telling you, if youngkin wins and can bring more asians and people of color into the mix, again, this is going to be the formula that republicans try to duplicate in 2022. likewise, democrats are going to really have to rethink how much trump and the existential despair of the gop is truly going to motivate voters in a midterm election. >> so having worked alongside a lot of democratic candidates, what do you think of that argument? there's also the corollary that biden and mcauliffe, according to the exit polls, are under water, unfavorable, that's not a great thing, and we check this for our coverage tonight. obama was under water in 2013, as was mcauliffe, kornacki
reminded us of that as well, when mcauliffe did eke out that victory. these things are relevant but not always predetermined. i'm curious your reaction to all of the above, cecile. >> look, i think it's clearly mcauliffe is going against historic trends here. it's always tough for in virginia, for the party that's in power to win the virginia race. so put that aside. i think headed into 2022, everything alex said is right. the republican party has got to figure out how to diversify their base and maybe glenn youngkin has done a tiny bit of that in virginia. but look, if -- going forward, looking at next november, we will have passed a massive infrastructure bill, we will have passed help for women, everything from child care, the child tax cut, support for taking care of your elders in their homes, everything that is so popular in the biden plan,
which is of course why every republican is voting against every single piece of it and trying to throw sand in the gears. so clearly, this election is happening at a critical moment in a very tough moment, but that's going to be different in november 2022. and again, i think women are going to look and see who are the folks who have been on my side, who are passing legislation enacting things, putting checks in my pockets, getting my kids back to school, and who's the party who is trying to keep anything from progressing. and i think, look, glenn youngkin may have done a good job of fading the donald trump support. that's going to be much harder for republicans when we get into next november. he's going to be a weight around their neck every step of the way. >> yeah, a lot of key points with folks who know their way around these races. cecile, alex, larry, and chris. my thanks to each of you. . it's election night here. we're going to look at the republican rhetoric on one of
the other issues, the classroom, and is education a code for getting into racial strife. >> also, the man who put obama and biden in the white house, david plouffe, live on a big night. stay with us. >> we're going to win. i think we're going to win in virginia. >> if my base turns out, he's going to win. i hope they turn out. i really want them to turn out. mm. [ clicks tongue ] i don't know.
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should play a big part in our kids' education. >> parents be involved and having a say in what's going on in our schools. >> education. that is a once routine, even dry policy issue that has turned electric in the virginia race. polls closing within the hour. here's why education is shifting. why it's almost become something of a buzz word that is apart from its definition of providing information or knowledge to people. republicans out of power are seizing on schools as the place to stir up racial tension and culture wars. virginia, for example, does not formally teach this framework of critical race theory. it is more of a collegiate or academic level lens for analyzing racism's role in history. but the republican candidates' closing arment of all the things going on, jobs, covid, et cetera. it's a pledge this thing that is not in virginia schools won't come to virginia.
>> so let me be clear. let me be clear on day one, we will not have political agendas in the classroom, and i will ban critical race theory. >> now, that would maintain the status quo. democrats arguing this whole thing is a distraction, and a retooled southern strategy to stoke race, while pretending that the discussion is about classrooms. now, the democrat, former governor mcauliffe, has fact checked youngkin on this issue and the wider idea that school curriculum should be subject to political parent vetoes or banning books. >> the parents had to write veto books, not to be knowledge about it, also take them off the shelves. i'm not going to let parents come into schools and take books out and make their own decisions. >> i'm joined by a political strategist, veteran of three presidential campaigns including the obama campaign, and errin
haines. it is election night. we'll get into all of it, but on this issue that has not only been a big closing issue but now that we have the exit polls, is the second highest ranking issue for virginia voters who talked to exit pollsters at their jobs, is this really about education? >> no. it's not at all about education. it's actually about using education and specifically the term parents' rights, as an umbrella term for a lot of nefarious ideas and things. glenn youngkin talks about parents' rights. and he uses it to sneak in ideas like the deep state ideology of donald trump when he talks about the fbi going after parents, which is nonsense. he uses it to sneak in anti-vaxx sentiment, saying kids don't need to be vaccinated to go to school against covid. he uses it quite frankly to sneak in racism, which is what the critical race theory argument that he's making is all
about. critical race theory is not being taught in virginia schools. glenn youngkin saying he's going to ban it is like him saying he's going to ban unicorns. it's a useless thing he's saying. however, what he's really doing is he's sending a signal to his trumpist base that i'm with you on how you feel about the way this country is changing. >> hmm. very clearly put. errin, i'm curious your views. this dovetails with what some of our guests were talking about at the top of the program and whether or not this race will land on the idea that the republican is synonymous with trump, very trumpy, maga, take your pick, or a different kind of republican. che arguing in the racial appeals it's much closer to trumpism. your view. >> well, look, ari, lest there be any confusion, critical race theory is the big lie of 2021. it is, as you mentioned, the modern day southern strategy to appeal to white voters. last year, it was the fear of a
rigged election and voter fraud. in 2018, the migrant hoard headed for the border. this is the code buzz word of 2016. that is because race based appeals are an increasingly perennial aspect of politics. it's one former president trump capitalized on his elections, but it's not new to president trump, and current candidate are testing the strategy to see how successful it can remain going forward. >> this really goes to where the politics are at this year and of course the national midterms next year, because these things sometimes work by appealing to one group and understanding, oh, that's, as you put it, white grievance maga culture, while other people who are less political informed might say what's wrong with parents' rights? if it means you have input on aspects of, for example, your family's autonomy or how your children are treated, fine. if that's what parents' rights means. but if what it means is code for
saying, oh, we're going to make the sixth or eighth grade classroom the battleground for racial debates that were not in the classroom but for this right-wing approach, that seems misleading at best. reading from coverage here, this from juan williams. parents' rights is code for white race politics. he said it's not long ago racist politicians rallied with states' rights. now the argument is white parents are being ignored when they complain their children are uncomfortable learning about racism. that's from a long time analyst but self-described analyst and fox news analyst, juan williams saying be honest about what this is and don't forget america's classrooms, our schools were ground zero for racist white attacks in politics and against integration for a long time. >> yeah, and the problem for
democrats is historically speaking, the states' rights appeal did work. the southern strategy did work for republicans. the sail thing is happening again right before our eyes. states' rights sounds very reasonable. of course, states have rights. but the gop used states' rights to sneak in all kinds of causes. first and foremost, the maintenance of jim crow, but then later, it expanded to fighting environmental regulations. and labor regulations. all of these things became part of states' rights. and what the gop has found is that parents' rights serve the same function. it is the new states' rights. it's an umbrella term that sounds reasonable. of course, parents love their children. they should have a say in their education. that's why we have a pta, parent teacher conferences, school boards, school board meetings and elections. all these things parents can participate in. every teacher i have encountered has told me they wish parents would participate more in these things that have been set up for them. not less. >> right, but in a real way.
>> yeah. but the problem is that this is being used as code for all kinds of maga related causes and the problem for democrats is that it has all worked before. >> you use that word code. i want your reaction to something that has gotten a lot of attention. we fact check stuff before we take it from the internet to television. this really shows the acronym for this, the code, as chai put it, is riling people up, but they don't know anything about it. take a look. >> and what is critical race theory? >> well, i'm not going to get into the specifics of it because i don't understand it that much, but it's something that i don't -- what little bit that i know, i don't care for. >> and what have you heard that you don't like? >> i'm not going to -- you know, i don't -- i don't have that much knowledge on it, but it's
something i'm not -- that i don't care for. >> errin. >> sure, because he didn't learn it in school. and you know, unless he went to law school, and likely at a historically black college or somewhere elsewhere they're teaching critical race theory, because that's where critical race theory is taught. this fighting isn't even about critical race theory, you know this. we talk about states' rights. states' rights is already in full effect here in the wake of the 2020 election. states' rights is what the voter suppression effort is about. states' rights is what we're seeing happen with the abortion, the ongoing fight for reproductive rights in this country. states rights is what's happening with the transgender attacks right now happening in this country at the state level. but republicans are attempting to redefine and kind of weaponize critical race theory in this era of academia to really fit into the ongoing culture war to really, you know,
erase history, frankly. 1619 project has been part of this, the case for tearing down confederate monuments was part of this. and just to be clear, the civil war was about slavery, not states' rights, is absolutely part of this, but people who are on this side of the argument know that history cannot be changed, but it can be forgotten if it's not taught. we as a country, i thought the already learned the lesp, yet we find ourselves here again because race remains so potent in our politics. >> a living history with an echo, and it's election night, but wasn't it lil wayne who said the past isn't prologue, it isn't even past. >> i believe that was the rapper william faulkner, also from the south, though. i get your confusion. >> it was lil faulkner, i did get confused and i appreciate the literary fact check. good to have you both on the good night. election coverage, 60 second. we're also half a hour to polls
closing in virginia. david plouffe will be back in one minute. nute there's a different way to treat hiv. it's once-monthly injectable cabenuva. cabenuva is the only once-a-month, complete hiv treatment for adults who are undetectable. cabenuva helps keep me undetectable. it's two injections, given by a healthcare provider once a month. hiv pills aren't on my mind. i love being able to pick up and go. don't receive cabenuva if you're allergic to its ingredients or taking certain medicines, which may interact with cabenuva. serious side effects include allergic reactions post-injection reactions, liver problems,...and depression. if you have a rash and other allergic reaction symptoms, stop cabenuva and get medical help right away. tell your doctor if you have liver problems or mental health concerns, and if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or considering pregnancy. some of the most common side effects include injection site reactions, fever, and tiredness. if you switch to cabenuva, attend all treatment appointments. with once-a-month cabenuva, i'm good to go.
ask your doctor about once-monthly cabenuva. didn't even look at the republican candidate because of the last four years, honestly. >> when you look at the attempt to paint youngkin as another donald trump, you know, it just doesn't wash. >> we're tracking all kinds of races across the nation. it's this off-year election night. though most fixated on virginia, where polls close within half an hour. republicans testing the culture war strategy and tries to tap trumpism while claiming distance from donald trump, the person democrats insist trump is still effectively on the ballot as long as the republican party remains this extreme. and terry mcauliffe you see on the screen there, but if a president is a drag on the party, well, it could actually
be biden who has a 56% disapproval in those new exit polls among virginia voters today. 28% say their vote is to express opposition against biden. the ray of hope for democrats here, last time when mcauliffe won in an off year, a similar 54% of virginians at the time disapproved of then-president obama. who also went on to re-election. an architect of those winning strategies is david plouffe, barack obama's 2008 campaign manager, a former senior adviser in the white house, and someone who all democrats turn to for insight and counsel. so interesting to have you on the big night. >> election night 2021. >> 2021. >> there we go. >> let's start with that comparison. obama and mcauliffe were under water, as you experts like to say. but managed to win. could terry mcauliffe pull that off tonight or is it different? >> no, he could. i think the question here is, this is a -- 2013 was a tough environment for terry, too.
but you know, we just can't compare this election night to a year ago. okay. i think a lot of americans, including virginia, thought we would be largely done with the pandemic. delta reared its head. the economy is growing, but not as quickly as we would like. gas prices, which i will tell you, when gas prices are this high before an election, voters are really cranky. other cost of living matters. terry is a repeat candidate. that doesn't work as well these days as it used to. a bunch of things that make the terrain challenging. you look at biden's approval number, which is 43% i think approve, trump's is 41%. so the question as we see youngkin in the exits, and i have been through exits being as wrong as anything, so let's be careful of that, but which of those two candidates can more outperform their standard bearer, and i think you would still say trump is the republican standard bearer, and do some of these people who say education, even though it was the number two issue, youngkin only won it by 18 points, and
that's his signature issue. this is going to be a close race, but my point in terms of what's does this mean? a lot to the governance of virginia, but for 2022, if mcauliffe wins or loses by one or two, democrats have to really figure out which voters have moved and why. >> and by delta, you mean -- >> well, biden won it by ten. we'll learn something in new jersey, too. murphy won by 16. does he win by close to that, 12, or more like 6 or 8. this is not unusual. usually a those two governors races depart a lot from the previous year's presidential race. but you have to look at what happened with swing voters, with the republican turnout, with democratic turnout, do research, and know you have a year to fix it because democrats lost house seats in 2020. when biden won virginia by ten. so to basically hold on to the house, you have to think, how do we get back to the place where
we're winning states like virginia by ten again. >> which for you, is kind of an alarm for the democratic party without making any prediction tonight, which we don't do. the other question is the flip side, why in your view is glenn youngkin up in the favorable view among so many virginia voters? is it because of something about him or that he's new? >> well, i think part of it is he's new. i think the conversation about youngkin on social media, so i live in california, i get a lot of what's happening in that race through social media. is about the ad about banning books, the rally, those two things are super offensive. but this guy has spent enormous amount of money running ads basically being mitt romney. >> hold on, david. are you suggesting you can't rely on twitter for all of your news and views of the world? >> maybe sports and weather, but not politics. >> let's develop this point because of course, we have seen some of this in the heat of that, and to be clear, the biden/mcauliffe strategy was to focus on that. you're saying he may have broke
through, at least on the favorable side, if he wins or not, on what other issues on the ground? >> i think on being more moderate, being a kinder, gentler republican. he's run ads talking about he wants to increase education spending. he wants to increase teacher pay. so it's not just a right-wing crazy stuff, so i think he did a good job in the beginning. he had to hump trump in the primary. i think he's paid the price the last two or three weeks for his association with trump, but he spent some time basically saying i'm not trump. i'm a different kind of republican. i'm a virginia kind of republicans, and we know in states like that, listen, larry hogan, governor of massachusetts -- sorry, maryland. baker in massachusetts, those type, if they can portray themselves as moderate republicans, they still have a shot, even in a state like virginia. >> let me ask you also about the other part of politics which is this momentum, this existential feeling of you're going the right way or not. we talk to a lot of people. right after the stimulus checks were cut, there was this feeling, however vague, about a
biden momentum. and people felt like it was hitting them and it was kind of in the conversation. right now, it's something like the opposite of momentum. there's a mood that maybe biden/the democrats aren't quote/unquote getting it done in washington, why is it taking so long. news viewers know, you know from being inside the white house, that may melt away if you get progress. we have discussed that. it may melt away. you get that 50th vote. but that momentum certainly is not strong right now. and you don't have to take my word for it. a top virginia democrat, mark warner, saying that. take a listen. >> i wish we would have gone ahead and passed the infrastructure bill back in september. it would have given the president a big win. i think it would have made the race in virginia a lot better for terry mcauliffe, but we are where we are. >> is that true or wishful thinking from someone who is both in virginia and wants that thing to pass? >> he's also won senate and governor's races there.
i don't think it would be a lot better, but it would be better. virginia particularly those large vote producing suburban areas, they're actually paying attention to what's happening in washington much more than you find elsewhere. i think in a lot of states, this would be more background noise that activists care about, and they're important too, but in virginia, maybe more. listen, i think when the rescue package passed, that was also before the delta variant had recaptured the country, so i think people were hopeful. biden comes in, we're getting shots in arms, got a rescue package. we can see the other side. here we are deep into 2021 and we're still struggling with covid, despite the enormous progress we have made. now you have cost of living that is high to the extent people are frustrated about lack of action in washington. that's happening. i also think mcauliffe has done a good job of trying to put youngkin on trial. but the national debate has been democrat versus democrat. >> for months. >> and that has to be part of next year, is have to do a
better job of defining what democrats have fought for and won and how they delivered for you, the voter. but then you have to crucify these republicans. embracing white nationalism, embracing the insurrectionists. they extended the pandemic, talking down vaccines, talking down masks, lying through their teeth, basically they're very comfortable running race campaigns now. if you can't beat these guys in 2022, we have a problem, but you have to be really tough and we have to get a little bit out of academic language and get nor guttural in terms of how we're talking both about what democrats are doing, and who republicans are screwing. >> then you mention new jersey and you widen out. we know why people are focused so much on virginia, but you have the governor's race in new jersey. you have new york city, which has a bunch of races that tend to favor highly democratic registration advantage, but you still have a big mayor's race there where you had kind of the former police officer who also says he's for civil rights went out, some msnbc viewers might
recall maya wiley came in second. andrew young, a democrat people know. >> he's a democrat. >> independent. d.a.'s race. yeah, so what about any of those other races are you watching any of those? is there anything that could be interesting there tonight? >> i think you'll look for turnout in all of them even though they're different, because off-year election, swing voters matter a lot, but turnout is incredibly important. you're looking for democratic enthusiasm, also looking for republican enthusiasm. reports would suggest turnout is high in virginia today, but reports would also suggest it's high and blue and red areas. we have to learn from that. so i think, yeah, what you need to do is if you're running a race in 2022, if you're a candidate in 2022, if you're pelosi or schumer running the dga at the white house, you have to spend a lot of time studying this, what happened. it's harder to know why it happened so you have to do research, and understand, optimistic -- >> what is this? is this not as good turnout as
possible or what is the this they have to study? >> you have look at swing voters behave differently this november from last november, who were they and why? turnout, were there variances in young african-american voters, in the latino vote, with asian voters, suburban voters. what did republicans do? were they able to get strong turnout despite trump not being on the ballot. you have to bake all that in. i think the environment for democrats will be better next year because i think hopefully the pandemic will be in the rear view mirror, biden and democrats should have accomplishments. republicans are vulerable if you run a smart campaign. trump almost won because his turnout, i think, beat expectations in '20. democratic turnout was historic in '18, but republicans also had strong turnout where they needed it. so to win swing congressional districts and senate races, you have to do both, particularly in an off year.
you have to meet your turnout mark and win swing voters. you cannot choose. you have to look at what happens tonight across the country super carefully and not assume it's cement, but understand that to ignore it would be at your peril. >> the other thing we want to get you on, we have david plouffe here, who barack obama literally picked to help him get to the white house, and you did it. you also have experience in this other thing in the democratic party that is a very difficult dance that has become more common as republican extremism has been mainlined and it's what barack obama dealt with, which is how much time do you spend rebutting and disproving lies and the crazy, because you don't want to leave it unanswered, without overdoing it. as you know, and everyone who watches the news know, sometimes democrats have seemed to overreact to all these things. coming off an insurrection and the big lie, and now you have people, we see this in virginia, but it apparently may be the new m.o. in many races where republicans are actually just trying to lie and claim that
anything going towards the democrats means there's voter fraud, and all the attacks on the vote of confidence, newt gingrich in your view may not be such a high standard to begin with, but historically, he's getting worse than he used to be, and the claims and lies are coming louder and earlier than they used to. so again, i always tell viewers, i'm not playing this because it is news worthy and true. i'm playing it because it's a newsworthy lie for david plouffe's analysis briefly, newt gingrich here before any results come in in virginia. take a look. >> does youngkin need to win for this to have the maximum impact? what if it's really tight? >> first, if it's really tight, they'll steal it. you can't afford to have a really tight election. you have to win by a big enough margin they can't steal it. >> this is that trumpified groundwork. how much in your view should this be addressed, tackled, fact checked, rebutted, and how