Gingrich says Democrats will try to 'steal' close election if they lose in Virginia

Former House Speaker Newt GingrichNewton (Newt) Leroy GingrichMORE (R-Ga.) suggested that if Tuesday's Virginia gubernatorial race comes down to a narrow margin of victory, the Democrats will attempt to "steal it." 

"First of all, if it's really tight, they'll steal it, so you can't afford to have a really tight election," Gingrich said during an appearance on Sean HannitySean Patrick HannityHannity after Jan. 6 texted McEnany 'no more stolen election talk' in five-point plan for Trump Jan. 6 committee asks Ivanka Trump to sit for interview Tucker Carlson extends influence on GOP  MORE's Fox News program Monday. "You have to win by a big enough margin that they can't steal it." 

The race for Virginia governor, a contest between former Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) and businessman Glenn Youngkin (R), will be decided on Tuesday in what is seen as a national bellwether for both parties and a barometer for the Democratic Party's popularity under President BidenJoe BidenPredictions of disaster for Democrats aren't guarantees of midterm failure A review of President Biden's first year on border policy  Vilsack accuses China of breaking commitments in Trump-era trade deal MORE ahead of next year's midterm elections. 

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Gingrich said a win for Youngkin would amount to a political "earthquake," but if he loses narrowly it would be "an interesting tremor." 

"This is the beginning of a tidal wave," he added. 

Throughout his campaign, McAuliffe has attempted to tie Youngkin to former President TrumpDonald TrumpPredictions of disaster for Democrats aren't guarantees of midterm failure A review of President Biden's first year on border policy  Hannity after Jan. 6 texted McEnany 'no more stolen election talk' in five-point plan for Trump MORE, who lost Virginia by a wide margin in 2020. The former president has voiced his support for the Republican but has not made an in-person appearance on Youngkin's campaign trail.

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Trump, meanwhile, has continued to suggest in public statements and speeches that the 2020 presidential election was not conducted fairly and has made unsupported claims that the contest between himself and Biden was tainted by widespread voter fraud.

However, both state and federal elections officials have stated that there was no substantial evidence of widespread voter fraud. In addition, almost all of Trump's efforts to challenge the 2020 election results in court were unsuccessful.

Following Trump's defeat last year, Gingrich earned headlines with an op-ed in which he announced that he would not accept Biden's victory weeks after it had been declared.

"You have more than 74 million voters who supported President Trump despite everything — and given the election mess, the number could easily be significantly higher. The truth is tens of millions of Americans are deeply alienated and angry," Gingrich wrote last December. "If Mr. Biden governs from the left — and he will almost certainly be forced to — that number will grow rapidly, and we will win a massive election in 2022."

Gingrich has reportedly kept close ties to Trump over the last year, helping him draft a new policy agenda as the former president mulls another bid for the White House in 2024.

The Hill has reached out to Fox and Gingrich for additional comment.