BY OLYMPIA MEOLA
Gov. Bob McDonnell this morning cast Republican gains in the House of Delegates and Virginia Senate as partly a repudiation of President Barack Obama’s policies and said the pick-ups will give the GOP momentum going into 2012.
Appearing on Morning Joe on MSNBC, McDonnell said Republicans picked up at least six seats in the House of Delegates — “the highest number total of Republican seats in the Virginia House that we’ve ever had.”
He also claimed a two-seat pick up in the Senate for a 20-20 split, with Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling as the tie breaker, “giving Republicans effective control.”
After midnight Democrats held 20 seats and Republicans 19 with one in the balance by a razor-thin margin. Republican Bryce Reeves led Sen. R. Edward Houck, D-Spotsylvania by 86 votes. Reeves declared victory, but Houck’s campaign manager said in a statement that the race remains too close to call.
“It was a huge win,” McDonnell said this morning. “I think it was a repudiation of many of the president’s policies. But more importantly, I think, a verification or a validation of our problem solving, pro-job, pro-economic development policies here.”
He thinks the results will give Republicans a lift going into the 2012 presidential elections in this key battleground state where both parties will make a strong push.
“Next year when we have a chance to hire a new president of the United States, I think these elections will give us a lot momentum going into next year,” he said.