After a day of voting and three days of ballot counting, the Republican slate is set for November’s state elections.
Glenn Youngkin secured the GOP nomination for governor and will be joined on the ballot by lieutenant governor nominee Winsome Sears and attorney general hopeful Del. Jason Miyares (R-82).
Party delegates cast votes at 39 locations around the commonwealth on Saturday’s unassembled convention. In Loudoun, delegates from throughout the 10th Congressional District lined up outside the party headquarters in Ashburn to drop off their ballots in a drive-through collection. Statewide, only about half of the 53,000 registered delegates cast ballots on Saturday.
That night, all ballots were moved to the Richmond Marriot hotel where party officials begin working through the rank-choice voting in each race.
The attorney general’s race was tallied Sunday, with Miyares, of Virginia Beach, securing the nomination after three rounds of counting. In the end, he received 52% of the vote, outpacing C.L. “Chuck” Smith Jr., who got 48%. The majority of Loudoun delegates favored Smith, with the unweighted vote going 760 for Smith and 287 for Miyares in the first round, and 973 to 455 in the final round.
Ballots in the gubernatorial race were tallied throughout the day Monday. Following the sixth round of counting, Youngkin secured 55.4% of the vote. Pete Snyder was second with 44.6%. Sen. Amanda Chase placed third and former House Speaker Kirk Cox placed fourth, but were eliminated from contention, along with Octavia L. Johnson, Sergio de la Peña and Peter Doran, as part of the voting system that required the winner to gain 50% of the vote.
“I am prepared to lead, excited to serve and profoundly humbled by the trust the people have placed in me. Virginians have made it clear that they are ready for a political outsider with proven business experience to bring real change in Richmond,” Youngkin said in a statement released after his victory was announced.
Loudoun’s delegates were split evenly between Youngkin and Snyder. They delivered 520 unweighted votes for Youngkin, 519 for Snyder and 179 for Chase in the first round.
On Tuesday morning, Winsome Sears, a former delegate from Winchester, secured the nomination for lieutenant governor. She achieved 55% of the vote in the fourth round of counting. Glenn Davis was second, with 33%.
Loudoun’s convention delegates strongly backed Sears, with 589 first-round votes going her way.
In its unassembled convention, the party hand-counted paper ballots using a ranked-choice voting system. Delegates were asked to rank each of the 17 candidates in order of preference. If no candidate won a majority of votes on the first ballot, the last place candidate in the race was eliminated and the second-place choices on those ballots were be added to the tally. That process continued in rounds until a candidate achieved a majority.
Virginia Democrats are selecting their nominees during a June 8 primary, for which early voting is underway. There are five candidates vying for the gubernatorial nomination, six for lieutenant governor and two for attorney general.
Youngkin, of Great Falls, is running for office for the first time. He holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and is the former co-CEO of the Carlyle Group, a Washington, DC private equity firm, retiring in September 2020 after 25 years with the firm. He hopes to lead Republicans to their first statewide electoral victory since 2009, and then to use that platform to help Republicans win local elections, state and Congressional elections.
Sears, of Winchester, was born in Jamaica, grew up in New York City and went on to join the U.S. Marine Corps. In 2002, she became the first Black female Republican, first female veteran, and the first naturalized citizen to serve in the state House of Delegates, serving in the 90th District in Norfolk and Virginia Beach. She previously ran unsuccessfully for Congress in the Virginia 3rd District.
Miyares, of Virginia Beach, is an attorney and has represented part of the city in the House of Delegates since 2016. He was the firstCuban Americanelected to the Virginia General Assembly, his family having fled Cuba in 1965, 11 years before he was born.