RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR)–In Virginia there is a three-decades long voting pattern in the governor’s race, or a “White House jinx” as some call it, that puts into office the opposite party of the one currently holding the Oval Office.
Public opinion polls have had Democrat nominee Terry McAuliffe ahead in the polls since July. A new election-eve poll indicates McAuliffe maintains his advantage over Republican Ken Cuccinelli, just one day before the two candidates square off on in Virginia’s gubernatorial race.
If his current trend holds true on the big day, the former Bill (and Hilary) Clinton campaign chairman could buck a historic tradition that goes back to 1977.
Behold the data below that indicates a pattern, not a hard and fast rule.
1977: Republican John Dalton was elected governor while Democrat Jimmy Carter held the presidency.
1981: Democrat Chuck Robb was elected governor while Republican Ronald Regan held the presidency.
1985: Democrat Gerald Baliles was elected governor as Reagan kept a second-term presidency.
1989: Democrat Doug Wilder was elected governor, as Republican George H.W. Bush held the presidency.
1993: Republican George Allen was elected governor as Democrat Bill Clinton held the presidency.
1997: Republican Jim Gilmore was elected governor as Clinton held second term.
2001: Democrat Mark Warner was elected governor as Republican George W. Bush held the presidency.
2005: Democrat Tim Kaine was elected governor the year Bush was president second term.
2009: Republican Bob McDonnell was elected governor as Democrat Barack Obama held the presidency.
Obviously Virginia is very different than it was back in the 70s, the last time the same party held both the White House and the governor seat.
Still, a nine-times-in-a-row election pattern could change on Tuesday.