Everytown pledged almost $2 million in the Commonwealth to back anti-gun Democrats who got shellacked at the polls on Tuesday.
Republican gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin was considered early Wednesday morning by CBS, Politico, and others as besting Democratic candidate and former Gov. Terry McAuliffe by about 70,000 votes, the first statewide win by the GOP in Virginia since 2009. In a trifecta, Republican Winsome Sears is projected as the winner of the lieutenant governor race against Democrat state Delegate Hala Ayala while Republican state Delegate Jason Miyares is set to unseat incumbent Virginia attorney general Mark Herring.
All three Dems were firmly endorsed by national gun control groups with Moms Demand Action labeling them "Gun Sense Candidates" earlier this year.
"Virginia’s elections have always been a national bellwether, so it says a lot about the strength of the gun safety movement that three gun sense candidates are running at the top of the Democratic ticket,” said John Feinblatt, president of Everytown, in June. “These candidates know that gun violence prevention is a winning issue in the Commonwealth, and they also know that Moms Demand Action volunteers will go all out to elect gun sense champions up and down the ballot in 2021."
Nonetheless, despite Feinblatt's assurances and the assistance of some $1.8 million to go along with it, it looks like the candidates balanced on the anti-Second Amendment platform failed to make the cut with voters.
McAuliffe's campaign site for his 2021 campaign includes a ban on "assault rifles, high-capacity magazines, and ghost guns," a crackdown on open carry provisions, and the creation of a taxpayer-funded gun control tsar "to identify and coordinate solutions to gun violence across state agencies."
Ayala, who wanted to make history as the first female, Latina lieutenant governor in Virginia, had a similar plan to ban self-manufactured "ghost guns" as well as modern sporting rifles. She also wanted the state to recognize "gun violence as a public health crisis."
Herring, who has been AG since 2014, campaigned on his site that he "has stood up to the gun lobby and a legislature that is beholden to it," and promised more of the same if re-elected, pointing out that he is in favor of gun rationing and controversial "smart gun" technology mandates.
While the NRA did not directly endorse Youngkin, they frequently labeled Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe "an anti-gun extremist" and made sure to tie him to the floundering Biden administration. Notably, the NRA did endorse Miyares and Sears, the other two Republican statewide candidates.
"Jason Miyares and Winsome Sears are strong advocates for the Second Amendment and are committed to protecting our fundamental right to keep and bear arms," NRA Political Victory Fund Chairman Jason Ouimet said in July.
Going further, the Virginia Citizens Defense League, a well-known regional Second Amendment organization, launched a $400,000 campaign against McAuliffe, Ayala, and Herring. The VCDL went after the trio on their record.