(Note that this is a 51.1% Kaine district, so definitely winnable for Democrats, especially against a Tea Party extremist like Scott Taylor! – promoted by lowkell)
As we make our way through the final 19 days of the campaign season, one race worth keeping an eye on is located in a very unlikely spot for a Democratic pick-up in the House of Delegates this cycle. The 85th District, which is comprised entirely of precincts within Virginia Beach, is an open seat with the retirement of long-time incumbent Delegate Bob Tata (R). The vacant seat will be occupied next January by either Democrat and long-time Kempsville resident Bill Dale, or perpetual Republican candidate and Tea Party favorite Scott Taylor.
Bill Dale has been a resident of Virginia Beach for nearly three decades, and has been actively involved in the community. His work in the community includes helping to start the Virginia Beach Coalition for the Homeless and the Virginia Beach Human Rights Commission. Dale was a priest at the Church of the Ascension in Virginia Beach before retiring in 1998 to marry his wife, Paula. For the past 15 years, Bill has worked as a financial advisor for UBS in Virginia Beach, where he manages nearly $200 million for his clients. Bill’s top priorities in Richmond will be:
*Continuing to invest in transportation and infrastructure projects (including expanding light rail to the Virginia Beach oceanfront)
*Ensuring that the General Assembly removes itself from women’s reproductive healthcare decisions
*Enacting early voting in Virginia
Dale’s opponent, Scott Taylor, is known mostly for being the President of OPSEC, where he spent most of 2012 campaigning against President Obama’s re-election. Additionally, Taylor is a regular contributor on Fox News and participated in a campaign rally with Michele Bachmann just last year. These tactics have led him to being a Tea Party favorite, and his financial report shows a sizable number of contributions from Tea Party-affiliated officials such as Eric Cantor. Taylor has previously run for Mayor of Virginia Beach (2008) and for U.S. Congress (VA-2), losing each handily.
More troubling than his political background, however, is Taylor’s financial background. Since 2010, Taylor has been sued three separate times for walking out on his financial obligations, totaling $1.4 million dollars in court-ordered payments. The most recent case saw Taylor ordered to appear in court just days from his Republican Primary election for the House of Delegates this summer, as Taylor had stopped paying rent for his gym franchise in Landstown Commons in Virginia Beach. Just days before the court hearing, Taylor opened a new business and sold the gym equipment to himself and opened a new gym a few miles down the street. Taylor’s repeated shady business dealings combined with his rigid Tea Party ideology make him unfit to succeed Delegate Tata and represent the 85th District in Virginia Beach.
Bill Dale (D) has already piled up an impressive list of endorsements, including:
Hampton Roads REALTORs Association
Virginia Education Association
Virginia Chapter Sierra Club
SMART (Sheet, Metal, Air, and Transportation Union)
Additionally, Bill Dale received a 100% score on his NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia survey and was named a Champion of Women’s Health by Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia.
When the polls close at 7:00pm on November 5, all eyes will be on the top of the ticket as Terry McAuliffe, Ralph Northam, and Mark Herring look to complete a Democratic sweep in Virginia’s statewide offices (frankly, all eyes should be focused on the top of the ticket for obvious reasons). However, it is also critical that Democrats begin to make serious gains in the House of Delegates if they ever seek to regain control of the lower chamber of the General Assembly. Picking up a seat in an unlikely district would be a great value to increasing the Democratic Party’s brand in Virginia Beach, and would open the door for further gains in 2015.
For more information about Bill Dale or to donate online, please visit www.BillDaleForDelegate.com or email info@BillDaleForDelegate.com