It’s been since 2004 or perhaps 2006 that foreign policy has truly affected major elections.
Exit polls from the Virginia governor’s race show voters’ top issues were the economy, education, and the COVID-19 pandemic. Unsurprisingly in a gubernatorial election, national security did not make the list. But a look at what began propelling Glenn Youngkin to an upset victory shows that a major turning point was President Joe Biden’s disastrous summer surrender in Afghanistan.
The collapse in Biden’s approval began with that calamitous military withdrawal. The day before Kabul fell, Biden enjoyed a 50% national approval in the RealClearPolitics (RCP) average and 55% in other polls. But after the Afghanistan debacle, he cratered; by Election Day, his RCP approval average was down to 43%, and he opened this week even worse.
A recent Quinnipiac poll showed majorities disapproved of his performance not just on foreign policy, but also on the economy, immigration, his job as commander in chief, and even his handling of the pandemic, which had been his strong suit.
Nearly half of Virginia voters claimed they wanted to send a message about Biden last week, and 28% said their ballot was specifically to express opposition to him.
A late October NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll found only 37% believe Biden is competent, while half of Americans say he is not.
On the issues that voters care about most, Republicans have a commanding lead.
Just look at this graphic. pic.twitter.com/Pjm0XoikgX
— Michael McAdams (@M_McAdams) October 31, 2021
The perception of Biden’s incompetence began with the shameful decision to leave hundreds of U.S. citizens and thousands of Afghan allies behind enemy lines. Then his catastrophic choice to put our troops’ security in the hands of the Taliban led to the deaths of 13 young service members. Lastly, his insane belief that it was all an “extraordinary success” has done irreversible damage to many Americans’ impression of him.
Couple Afghanistan with recent shenanigans, and everyone but the most delusional leftist begins to understand.
A Fox News voter analysis found that three in four Virginians said negotiations over the president’s legislative agenda were an important factor in voting Republican.
Other reasons for voting Republican probably include incompetence and apathy toward record illegal crossings and migrants camped under bridges; the Biden administration’s inability to address the supply chain crisis or rising inflation; hearing the education secretary echo Terry McAuliffe’s appalling gaffe that parents should have no say in what schools teach; and, perhaps most tellingly, watching the Justice Department weaponize the FBI to intimidate parents exercising their right to show concerns about their children’s education.
Exit polls showed a massive 84% disagreed with Biden, Miguel Cardona, and Merrick Garland on their educational radicalism.
And again, will these Democrats learn? Fat chance.