CHESAPEAKE, Va. - Voters in Hampton Roads could play a crucial role in the Virginia gubernatorial race.
Experts say it could come down to the suburbs. More urban areas of Hampton Roads, like Norfolk and Newport News, trend blue. Rural areas, like Gloucester, trend red.
Virginia Beach and Chesapeake, which are full of suburbs, are considered purple, meaning voters there pick Democrats or Republicans depending on the election.
In 2020, both cities picked Joe Biden, but in 2016 both picked Donald Trump.
"I think it's more purple than anything. I think it depends on the topic of the day," said Logan Sorensen, an early voter in Chesapeake.
"I think it depends where you live," voter Betty Wall answered when asked whether she thinks Chesapeake leans blue or red.
"I vote for the person, not the party," said voter Carolyn Roberson.
With under two weeks to go until Election Day, voters said they thought the race between Democrat Terry McAuliffe and Republican Glenn Youngkin will be close.
Voters said schools were a big focus for them. "I'm very interested in kids getting a good education and the schools being funded well," Roberson said.
"I am concerned with the state of public schools, and that's one of the things that's driving me out here," Sorensen said.
With thin margins in the city in the past, supporters of both candidates cast their ballots Friday.
"I would really like for my candidate to win," Roberson, who supports McAuliffe, said. "I'd like to see goodness return and civility returned to our politics."
"I love America and I consider myself a patriot," Wall, a Youngkin voter, said. "I believe it's going to be very close. I believe at the end of the day on Election Day the Democrats are going to be very surprised."
Early in-person voting ends on October 30 before Election Day on November 2.