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Former President Barack Obama, right, gestures during a rally with Virginia's Democratic gubernatorial candidate Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam. Photo: AP/Steve Helber

Democratic candidate Ralph Northam secured his lead over Republican Ed Gillespie in the Virginia gubernatorial race, officially earning 50% approval to his opponent's 43%, according to a poll released today by the Wason Center for Public Policy.

Democrats were sweating earlier this week when polls showed Northam leading by just 4% and a previous poll showed him leading, though there were many undecided voters. A loss for Northam could trigger a similar Bernie vs. Hillary split we saw during the 2016 election, as Northam beat Bernie Sanders-backed primary challenger Tom Perriello.

Battle lines: While Gillespie leads among white voters, the poll finds Northam leads among young and old, women and men, and African-American voters.

Down-ballot races are led by Dems, too, though the races are tightening. The Dem candidates for the state AG and lieutenant governor races lead by 5% and 3%, respectively.

Go deeper

25 mins ago - Politics & Policy

McConnell drops filibuster demand, paving way for power-sharing deal

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (R) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell attend a joint session of Congress. Photo: Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has abandoned his demand that Democrats state, in writing, that they would not abandon the legislative filibuster.

Between the lines: McConnell was never going to agree to a 50-50 power sharing deal without putting up a fight over keeping the 60-vote threshold. But the minority leader ultimately caved after it became clear that delaying the organizing resolution was no longer feasible.

2 hours ago - Technology

Scoop: Google won't donate to members of Congress who voted against election results

Sen. Ted Cruz led the group of Republicans who opposed certifying the results. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

Google will not make contributions from its political action committee this cycle to any member of Congress who voted against certifying the results of the presidential election, following the deadly Capitol riot.

Why it matters: Several major businesses paused or pulled political donations following the events of Jan. 6, when pro-Trump rioters, riled up by former President Trump, stormed the Capitol on the day it was to certify the election results.

2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Minority Mitch still setting Senate agenda

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Chuck Schumer may be majority leader, yet in many ways, Mitch McConnell is still running the Senate show — and his counterpart is about done with it.

Why it matters: McConnell rolled over Democrats unapologetically, and kept tight control over his fellow Republicans, while in the majority. But he's showing equal skill as minority leader, using political jiujitsu to convert a perceived weakness into strength.