July 8, 2021 News & Press Releases

What People Are Saying About Glenn Youngkin’s Shocking Admission That He’s Lying To Virginians About His Right-Wing Agenda

by Democratic Party of Virginia

Richmond, VA — Last night, Virginians saw a shocking new video of Glenn Youngkin caught on camera admitting that he’s lying to voters. The video captured Youngkin revealing that he supports banning abortion and defunding Planned Parenthood but plans to lie about his extreme agenda in order to win votes.

Youngkin’s shameful admission only raises more questions: if he’s lying about his far right stance on abortion, what else is Youngkin hiding from voters? 

See below for a recap of statements and coverage on this bombshell development.

Washington Post: Video shows Glenn Youngkin saying he can’t fully discuss abortion or risk losing independent Virginia voters

A liberal activist released a video late Wednesday of GOP gubernatorial nominee Glenn Youngkin saying that he has to limit his antiabortion comments on the campaign trail for fear of alienating Virginia's independent voters, but that he would go "on offense" if he wins office and Republicans take a majority in the House of Delegates. [...] 

Apparently shot at a Youngkin campaign event last month in Loudoun County, the footage shows Windsor expressing strong antiabortion views while Youngkin seems sympathetic.

When another questioner asks whether Youngkin would defund Planned Parenthood or “take it to the abortionists,” Youngkin replies: “I’m going to be really honest with you. The short answer is in this campaign, I can’t. When I’m governor and I have a majority in the House we can start going on offense. But as a campaign topic, sadly, that in fact won’t win my independent votes that I have to get.” [...]

The dust-up gets at the tricky balance for any Republican running statewide in a Virginia that became increasingly blue during the Trump administration. Issues such as abortion play well among the GOP base but are riskier in the moderate suburbs that have tilted toward Democrats over the past four years.

MSNBC: GOP candidate says he hides his abortion positions from voters

Virginia's Glenn Youngkin says he can't tell voters his true beliefs about abortion, but he'll go "on the offensive" once in office.

Glenn Youngkin, the Republican Party's gubernatorial candidate in Virginia this year, sat down with the Washington Post in late May to talk about his candidacy. Asked how he might change state laws on guns and abortion, Youngkin "repeatedly evaded the topics."
A month later, the Post's editorial board pressed the GOP candidate to start "adding details" to his slogans. The same editorial said Youngkin may be a first-time candidate, but he's already "mastering the duck and the dodge," adding, "For Mr. Youngkin, silence on the substance of policy is a strategy." [...] 

In other words, the would-be governor could share his views on an important issue, but if he did, he'd likely lose. [...]

Candidates hiding their policy views is wholly at odds with how democracies are designed to function. Those seeking positions of public trust have a responsibility to tell voters what they'd do with power once in office, and then allow the electorate to make an informed choice.

Youngkin's views on abortion may not be popular with many Virginians, but the campaign offers him an opportunity to defend his position and encourage voters to agree with him. Keeping his views hidden isn't how the process is supposed to work

HuffPost: GOP Candidate For Virginia Governor Says He Can’t Share Antiabortion Stance With Voters

Glenn Youngkin says in a secretly taped video: “As a campaign topic, sadly, that in fact won’t win my independent votes that I have to get.”

Virginia’s GOP gubernatorial candidate, Glenn Youngkin, alluded in an undercover video released Wednesday that he has limited his public comments about his full stance on abortion rights so he doesn’t alienate independent voters, statements that his Democratic opponent claimed amounted to a campaign lie meant to hide his “radical views.”

Youngkin campaigned for the GOP nomination by saying he was “unabashedly” pro-life, telling a crowd in May that he would work to “protect the life of every Virginia child, born and unborn.” But The Washington Post noted a few weeks later that such statements had largely disappeared from his public comments.

Democrat Terry McAuliffe, the former Virginia governor who is running for another term, said his opponent’s comments demonstrated that the Republican had lied to voters and that it raised questions about his other political positions.

Virginia Scope: In a secretly recorded video, Youngkin discusses avoiding the abortion topic on the campaign trail

In a secretly recorded video, Republican candidate for governor Glenn Youngkin discussed his opposition to abortion while also having to avoid the topic on the campaign trail in order to not drive away Independent voters. [...]

In the video, Windsor and her partner push Youngkin to agree to extreme anti-abortion statements and take it to the “abortionists,” but Youngkin only outright agreed to oppose taxpayer-funded abortions and to walk back new policies passed by the Democrats.
Although Youngkin noted it would drive important swing voters away from his campaign if he discussed doing anything to limit abortion access prior to election day. He implied that could change after election day, however.  

Jamie Lockhart, the Executive Director of the Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia responded to the video. “For months, Glenn Youngkin has claimed he’s a moderate who won’t interfere with Virginians’ freedom,” she said. “But his comments make it abundantly clear that Youngkin is out-of-touch by any standard. He wants to ban abortion, and he’ll lie to Virginia voters so he can do so from the governor’s desk.” [...] 

The Daily Beast: Virginia GOP Guv Candidate Admits: I Stay Quiet on Abortion So I Don’t Lose Votes

Politicians often keep their personal views on hot-button issues to themselves to increase their chances of winning. They don’t often say they do that out loud. Former businessman Glenn Youngkin, a Republican running for Virginia governor, was caught on video telling a “supporter” that he couldn't speak about his views on abortion for fear of losing independent votes. 

Youngkin’s campaign said the video is an indication he won’t wade into sensitive topics, though Terry McAuliffe, his Democratic opponent, said it’s a sign of being two-faced.

The Hill: Youngkin says in video he can't discuss abortion for fear of losing independent votes

Virginia GOP gubernatorial nominee Glenn Youngkin says in a video released late Wednesday by a liberal activist group that he can't discuss abortion on the campaign trail too much or risk turning away the commonwealth's independent voters. 

In a clip posted online by the liberal news site the American Independent, Youngkin was asked if he would “take it to the abortionists,” to which he responded that he was “staunchly, unabashedly” anti-abortion but could not discuss the issue much ahead of the November election. [...]

The Independent: Video shows GOP candidate admitting he hides anti-abortion views to win over voters

Video has emerged of the Republican candidate for governor of Virginia saying he avoids voicing his anti-abortion views in front of voters. [...] As the video began making the rounds on local and national news media, Mr Youngkin’s campaign began doing damage control. [...]

According to a Washington Post report, Mr Youngkin has lived up to the strategy he outlined in the video. In May, when he first won the Republican nomination, he openly championed his anti-abortion views.

“Friends, together, all of us, we will protect the life of every Virginia child born and unborn,” he said in his victory speech.

Since then, however, the Post says he’s gone silent on the issue.

If he’s elected, however, Mr Youngkin has promised to “go on offense” again. The strategy has struck some critics as a dishonest bait-and-switch.

“For months @GlennYoungkin has claimed he’s a moderate who won’t interfere with Virginian’s reproductive freedom,” Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia wrote on Twitter. “But his comments are abundantly clear: He is out-of-touch by any standard. He wants to ban abortion and he’ll lie to Virginia voters so he can do so from the Gov Desk.”

WVTF: A Hot Mic Could Have Lasting Impacts on the Gubernatorial Race

Caught on tape: Republican candidate for governor Glenn Youngkin telling an activist he plans to limit his comments about abortion so he doesn't alienate independent voters. The hot mic moment that aired on cable television Wednesday night reveals the kind of campaign strategy usually voiced by consultants, not candidates. [...]

"The same way that you saw Mitt Romney's 47 percent comment in the presidential race just dog him all the way through Election Day because President Obama never let him forget it," says Tribbett. "This is going to be one Terry McAuliffe’s not going to let him forget."

It's an issue that's likely to come up in the debates, although so far the Youngkin campaign has agreed to only one.

On Twitter

Terry McAuliffe: Glenn Youngkin wants to defund Planned Parenthood and ban abortion. If that wasn’t bad enough, he's now admitted he's lying to voters about his radical views.

Virginians deserve to know: what other right-wing positions is Glenn Youngkin hiding from us?

Hala Ayala: Virginians support protecting a women's right to choose. The Republicans know this. That's why they're afraid to be honest with voters about where they stand. I've never been afraid to stand up and fight for reproductive justice, and I'll keep fighting as your Lt. Governor.

Jaime Harrison: Youngkin definitely took Ronna’s seminar … “Open Mouth & Just Lie 101.” We know this is just the tip of the iceberg. However it is another example that these folks just don’t give a damn about you.

DNC War Room: @GlennYoungkin, another Trump Republican in Virginia, caught on camera lying about his far-right agenda: Here he is admitting he wants to ban abortion in Virginia and defund Planned Parenthood

Planned Parenthood Action: YIKES. A must-watch: @GlennYoungkin says he'll pursue his personal anti-abortion, anti-reproductive health care, anti-Planned Parenthood "views" if elected

NARAL Pro-Choice VA: Anti-choice extremists like Glenn Youngkin have been misrepresenting efforts to protect access to abortion care, using inflammatory, deceptive, and insulting language like this to score political points

Alexis McGill Johnson: .@GlennYoungkin knows he's on the wrong side of voters, who overwhelming support access to reproductive health care — including safe, legal abortion. He thinks he can fool Virginians, but they'll remember.

James Carville: Let’s go to the tape. @AmerIndependent @UndercurrentTV @lawindsor, seems clear @GlennYoungkin wants to ban planned parenthood but worried about how voters will react. It’s the truth. Watch.

Lis Smith: So, Cuccinelli but only behind closed doors.

Paul Begala: Glenn Trumpkin thinks Virginians are dumb.

Fred Guttenberg: What should Virginia voters do when the GOP candidate publicly announces that he is a liar and his lie could put you at risk?  The answer is easy. VOTE FOR @TerryMcAuliffe.

Steve Benen: Virginia's Republican candidate for governor conceded that he can't tell voters his positions on abortion, but he'll "start going on offense" once in office.

That's not how democracy is supposed to work.