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McAuliffe takes Loudoun County amid growing tensions between parents, school boards

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe appeared to quickly take Loudoun County in the race for governor in Virginia Tuesday night, amid growing tensions in the county between parents and school officials.

Just after 8:30 p.m. Loudoun County had the majority of their precincts reporting election-day ballots and around 70 percent of early votes. McAuliffe remains ahead with 55.01 percent of the vote in the county — just over 87,000 — while Youngkin has around 44.51 percent of the vote — around 70,000. 

In the 2020 Presidential election, Biden won the county with 61.5 percent of the vote, beating Trump who had 36.5 percent.

Loudoun county has yet to count all of the mail-in ballots submitted — as Virginia law allows ballots postmarked by Election Day to be counted so long as they arrive by noon on Nov. 5 — however, those are anticipated to favor McAuliffe.

Despite McAuliffe’s lead in the Democratic county nearly two hours after the polls closed, Youngkin appeared to have an overall lead in the state holding 55.33 percent of the initial vote with McAuliffe holding 43.97 percent. One expert predicted the Democrat needed to win Loudoun county by 14 percent to hold a lead over Youngkin. 

Demonstrators protest the Loudoun County School Board’s handling of a sexual assault case in Ashburn, Virginia on October 26, 2021.
REUTERS/Leah Millis

As education and schooling remained a major issue for voters throughout the election, Loudoun County was a hot spot for parents voicing their concerns against school boards.

Most recently, parents demanded a superintendent and school board resign following allegations they lied and tried to cover up the sexual assault of a female student earlier this year.

Superintendent Scott Ziegler has been accused of lying about his knowledge of the assault, which occurred in May, after an email surfaced last week that contradicted comments he made at a school board meeting where he denied any bathroom assaults had occurred, according to Fox News.

Last week, a 15-year-old boy was found guilty of sexually assaulting the girl in a female bathroom at Stone Bridge High School.

During his campaign, Youngkin garnered massive support from parents as he promoted parents’ rights to voice their concerns about mask mandates and specific curriculum being taught, such as critical race theory or sexually explicit novels.

McAuliffe lost more support from parents during a September debate when he said “I don’t think parents should be telling schools what they should teach.” The former governor has since defended his comments.



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