Declining Rural Influence in Virginia Politics
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
This chapter traces the declining influence of rural Virginia through
a comparison of statewide election results nearly two decades apart:
2001 and 2020. The authors compare Mark Warner’s 2001 election as
governor, which included significant rural support, and his 2020 senate
campaign, which did not. Although both contests involved victorious
statewide campaigns by the same Democratic candidate, the political
and cultural changes that have taken place in Virginia over this period
could suggest something comparable to two different states: the Virginia
of 2001 and the Virginia of 2020. As this chapter shows, the Virginia
political environment of 2020 was far different from the environment of
2001—and those differences were not advantageous for the advance-
ment of rural interests.
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Farnsworth, Stephen J., Stephen Hanna, and Kate Seltzer. 2022. “Chapter 2: Declining Rural Influence in Virginia Politics.” In Vibrant Virginia: Engaging the Commonwealth to Expand Economic Vitality, edited by Margaret Cowell and Sarah Lyon-Hill, 41–58. Blacksburg: Virginia Tech Publishing. https://doi.org/10.21061/cowell.