Democrats are very desperate to win the governor race in Virginia. They control the governorship of so few states at this point that another loss would be devastating. We recently pointed out how low they are going in order to win: Desperate Democrats Go Full Race Card in New Ad for VA Gov Race

As you may recall, Democrats in Virginia took another step to shore up the vote last year. Professor Jacobson wrote: Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s plan to restore the felon vote for Hillary in Virginia

Now it could all pay off.

Samantha Michaels writes at Mother Jones:

Ex-Felons Voting for the First Time Could Shake Virginia’s Governor’s Race

In Virginia’s closely watched gubernatorial election, Republican Ed Gillespie has spent weeks airing ads lashing out at illegal immigrants, sex offenders, and people with felonies, boasting that he’s got the law-and-order creds to keep wrongdoers in line.

But Virginians with criminal records might get the last word, because for the first time in a long time, a huge group of ex-felons will help pick the state’s next governor.

Virginia is one of four states that permanently disenfranchise people with felonies, even after they’ve served their sentences. While the state’s governor is allowed to restore individuals’ right to vote, last year Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe shocked conservatives by signing an order restoring rights to more than 200,000 people who had completed their sentences and parole.

Republican lawmakers successfully sued to block the move, arguing that he lacked authority to restore rights en masse. So McAuliffe’s administration started handing out the orders one by one; more than 168,000 ex-offenders have since had their voting rights returned. About 42,000 of them have registered to vote.

In the last governor race in Virginia, McAuliffe won by a little more than 50,000 votes. This block of felon voters could actually be decisive.

Ed Gillespie has released this ad in response:

DNC Chair Tom Perez is laying the groundwork for talking points if Northam loses.

Laura Barrón-López reports at the Washington Examiner:

DNC chief Tom Perez downplays impact on Democrats if they lose Virginia governor’s race

Democratic National Committee chairman Tom Perez is confident the party will hold on to the Virginia governorship, but with the race closer than national Democrats would like, he tried to downplay any fallout if Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam loses.

“Virginia has a history of close races,” Perez said. “It’s a state where you’re always going to have close statewide elections, and this is no different.”

Perez pointed to other races within the Virginia House of delegates as an example of the “new DNC” which is focused on tickets up and down the ballot.

It’s still a very close race which suggests it could all come down to turnout.

Featured image via YouTube.