After Larry Sabato announced that the University of Virginia's "Crystal Ball" election ranking had changed its rating for the Virginia gubernatorial contest on Monday from "Leans Democratic" to "Leans Republican," he joined MSNBC to explain the reasons for the 11th hour switch in predicted outcome.
"The operative word is not critical and it's not theory, it's race. What a shock huh —race — that is what matters, and that's why it sticks," he explained of the parents' rights movement that's become a top issue for Virginia voters ahead of Tuesday's election and seen enthusiasm grow for Youngkin's campaign.
"There's a lot of, we can call it white backlash, white resistance, whatever you want to call it, it has to do with race," Sabato claimed before adding "we live in a post-factual era anyway — this is a post factual era. It doesn't matter that it isn't taught in Virginia schools," Sabato stated, falsely. "It's this generalized attitude that whites are being put-upon and we've got to do something about it," Sabato concluded of his reason Virginians support Youngkin.
Larry Sabato blames "white backlash" and "white resistance" for focus on education and Critical Race Theory in the Virginia gubernatorial race. pic.twitter.com/S2MCcBs5wK— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) November 1, 2021
Unsurprisingly, the lead-in to Sabato's interview featured MSNBC pushing the same false claim that Critical Race Theory isn't taught in schools when the Virginia Department of Education explicitly lists Critical Race Theory as a source for curriculum:
Right now, on its website, the Virginia Department of Education recommends "Critical Race Theory in Education" as a "best practice" and derives its definitions of "racism," "white supremacy," and "education equity" explicitly from "critical race theory." pic.twitter.com/QVSJVpju2A— Christopher F. Rufo ?? (@realchrisrufo) October 30, 2021
The reaction to Sabato's explanation is, of course, ludicrous, as many Twitter users pointed out.
MSNBC: How did education become the # 1 issue?— Michele Perez Exner (@michelepexner) November 1, 2021
Sabato: Because of "white resistance."
I am sure it has nothing to do with backlash to school closures, and Terry McAuliffe saying parents shouldn't have a say in their kids' education.
This guy is so disconnected from reality. https://t.co/pYkoKeRbMU
Sabato thinks parents upset about their school districts covering up rapes is 'white resistance'— Matt Vespa (@mVespa1) November 1, 2021