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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

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Democrats' billionaires tax explained

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

There is now legislative language behind the push to tax American billionaires on unrealized capital gains, as Sen. Ron Wyden last night released his 107-page plan.

Why it matters: This would be a sea change in U.S. tax policy, which has only applied to realized gains (otherwise known as income).

4 hours ago - World

Scoop: Blinken protests Israel settlements approval in "tense" phone call

Benny Gantz (L) and Tony Blinken. Photo: Jacquelyn Martin/Pool/AFP via Getty

Secretary of State Tony Blinken protested the decision to approve 3,000 new housing units in Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank during a tense phone call on Tuesday with Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz, three Israeli officials tell me.

Why it matters: This is the first time new construction in the settlements has been approved since President Biden assumed office, and the Biden administration had been privately pressing the Israeli government not to proceed.

The startup that wants to disrupt big internet providers

Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

A new startup backed by funding from AOL founder Steve Case and Laurene Powell Jobs wants to break up broadband monopolies across the country.

Why it matters: Internet access has been crucial during the pandemic, but it's not ubiquitous, and it can be both slow and unaffordable in swaths of the country.