Of all the vulnerable Virginia Democrats, Rep. Elaine Luria, who represents Virginia’s 2nd Congressional District, is perhaps the most in trouble when it comes to the likelihood she’ll lose her seat. It thus defies logic as to why during a recent campaign rally in Virginia Beach, she would declare “thank God we elected Joe Biden and Kamala Harris,” claiming “they’ve done so many good things!”
.@ElaineLuriaVA: “In 2020, thank God we elected Joe Biden and Kamala Harris and they’ve done so many good things!”
Virginians couldn’t disagree more – 55% disapprove of Joe Biden’s job performance.
— Congressional Leadership Fund (@CLFSuperPAC) September 1, 2022
The footage is particularly cringeworthy considering how deeply unpopular the president is in Virginia, despite how he won the state by 10 points in 2020. According to a poll released earlier this week by Roanoke College, Biden has just a 39 percent approval rating, while 57 percent disapprove.
The Congressional Leadership Fund (CLF) was quick to bring attention to the clip. “Elaine Luria went to Washington and completely lost touch with working families back home,” CLF Press Secretary Cally Perkins pointed out in a statement. “Campaigning on the failed Biden agenda only reminds voters that Luria is to blame for record prices, higher taxes, and a wrecked economy.”
State Sen. Jen Kiggans, the Republican challenging Luria come November, also spoke to Townhall about her opponent’s remarks.
“Elaine Luria has voted for Joe Biden’s agenda 99% of the time – so of course she’s now desperately trying to spin this Administration’s atrocious record as a positive one,” Kiggans pointed out. “But once again, Elaine’s comments are delusional and out-of-touch…she simply doesn’t get it. I can’t go a single day on the campaign trail without hearing from a voter who has been negatively impacted by record high inflation, historically high gas prices, or the supply-chain crisis. There is absolutely nothing ‘good’ about any of those things, but I guess Elaine will learn that the hard way on November 8th,” the state senator assured.
Kiggans’ campaign released an ad on Thursday night as well, which feature Luria’s comments.
Elaine Luria has voted for Joe Biden’s agenda 99% of the time… so of course she’s now desperately trying to spin this Administration’s atrocious record. But once again, Elaine’s comments are delusional and out-of-touch…she simply doesn’t get it. #OutOfTouch #VA02 pic.twitter.com/QLUXYI0WH8
— Jen Kiggans (@JenKiggans) September 1, 2022
Luria’s praise for the president is in strong contrast to many Democrats who have steered clear of the unpopular president and even more unpopular vice president. One such fellow Democrat includes Rep. Abigail Spanberger, another vulnerable incumbent in Virginia. Although Spanberger appeared with Biden at an event in Virginia back in February, she has since distanced himself from the president, and wouldn’t even commit to supporting him for his potential re-election.
Although the lines have been redrawn due to redistricting following the 2020 census, it’s also still worth pointing out that Rep. Luria could further be in trouble as Gov. Glenn Youngkin (R) won her district last November by 8 percentage points.
Even The New York Times has acknowledged that Luria is vulnerable, in the context of her serving on the January 6 select committee. Were the congresswoman to lose re-election, she would be at least the fourth out of nine members to not be serving in the next Congress. Reps. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) and Stephanie Murphy (D-FL) are retiring, and Rep. Liz Cheney, who serves as the select committee’s vice chair, lost her primary by nearly 40 points last month.
Speaking of her role on the select committee, an ethics complaint was filed against Luria over her fundraising off of her work on that committee, as was reported in June.
The race between Luria and Kiggans is considered a “Toss-Up, with Reps. Luria and Spanberger being some of the first members added to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC)’s Frontline members list, which is for the most vulnerable incumbents.