“The best signal, whether you’re for me or against me, that people are coming out and voting in these kind of numbers on our first day, gives me that faith that we will get through this virus,” he said. “We will get through the misinformation and disinformation, but the most effective way we can do that and show that strength of our democracy is [to] go out and vote.”

Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales rates Warner’s race against Republican Army veteran Daniel Gade Solid Democratic. But like candidates elsewhere, the senator is taking nothing for granted. In 2014, he got a scare on election night when his race against Republican Ed Gillespie went unexpectedly down to the wire, and he barely held on to win.

Warner casts his ballot Friday at the Voter Registration Office in Alexandria, Va. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Warner’s campaign has had to adjust to the realities of the coronavirus pandemic, which forced one of the hallmark events of Virginia politics, his “Almost Annual Pig Roast,” into an online format for 2020.

In a normal year, Warner invites thousands to his farm property in King George, Virginia, for a pig roast. The 2020 virtual event took place Thursday evening, featuring Warner in conversation with Democrats in Virginia’s House delegation along with the commonwealth’s junior senator, Tim Kaine, and special guests Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., and Jill Biden, the wife of Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden. Jill Biden has a connection to the state, having taught community college in Northern Virginia.

While some of the conversation Thursday evening was serious, it was not all that way. Kaine even took responsibility for a long-ago pig roast incident in which he apparently destroyed one of Warner’s jet skis.

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