Home Local Politics Paul Ferguson, Frank O’Leary Endorse Erik Gutshall for Arlington County Board, Winning...

Paul Ferguson, Frank O’Leary Endorse Erik Gutshall for Arlington County Board, Winning Endorsement Battle 16-4


Good news for those of us who support the real Democrat and progressive in this race, Erik Guthsall.

Ferguson, O’Leary Endorse Gutshall; Winning Endorsement Battle 16-4

Gutshall beating Garvey in all five current/former local elected official endorsement categories
Arlington, VA– Today, Clerk of the Circuit Court and former County Board Chairman Paul Ferguson, and longtime Treasurer Frank O’Leary, endorsed Erik Gutshall for the Arlington County Board over incumbent Libby Garvey. With this endorsement, Gutshall has earned the support of both current and former elected officials from the State Senate, House of Delegates, County Board, School Board, and Constitutional Office. Despite being in elected office for nearly twenty years, Garvey does not have endorsements from both current and former elected officials in any of the five local office categories. Gutshall also leads in the number of combined endorsements for each category. A comprehensive list can be found at the end of this press release.

“Erik and I are both former Civic Association Presidents, and we worked together when I was on the County Board, where I was immediately impressed with his effective and passionate representation of his neighborhood,” said Ferguson. “We share a deep commitment to environmental policies which allow residents and businesses to reduce energy usage and save money. As a planning commissioner, Erik understands the value of infrastructure investments that increase property values and improve our quality of life. I urge my fellow Arlingtonians to join me in supporting him on June 14th.”

“As Arlington’s treasurer for more than thirty years, I know how important it is to have leaders who will make sound investments in our community while respecting budget constraints,” said O’Leary. “For two decades, Arlington has been without a small business owner on the County Board. Erik’s small business perspective would help diversify and bring a unique voice to the County Board, and I wholeheartedly support his candidacy.”

“Arlington’s success is a direct result of the forward-thinking and forward-looking leadership of Paul Ferguson and Frank O’Leary,” said Gutshall. “Paul has brought a high level of customer service to the Clerk’s office, and as a County Board member, I would follow his example to create a service-oriented environment. I would also build on Paul’s work on pedestrian safety and neighborhood conservation.”

“For more than thirty years, Frank O’Leary served as Arlington’s treasurer,” continued Gutshall, “and his legacy is still felt today. Frank worked to drastically reduce Arlington’s tax delinquency rate, saving taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars. I will be a good steward of taxpayer dollars, and as a small business owner, know that every penny counts. I am honored to earn Frank and Paul’s support.”

Campaign spokesman Takis Karantonis said, “The lack of support that Libby Garvey has received from her past and current colleagues speaks volumes about her failed leadership and inability to work collaboratively with others throughout her twenty years in elected office. In his first campaign, Erik has been able to build a diverse coalition of supporters who appreciate his unique perspective and his ability to work together and plan for the future. Erik’s 16-4 endorsement lead among current and former elected officials comes months after he launched his campaign and Arlingtonians have had a chance to evaluate both candidates. Voters across this County have a choice this election, and are overwhelmingly siding with Gutshall, giving him the momentum heading into the final weeks of the campaign.”

State Senate, Current

Gutshall: 1 (Adam Ebbin)

Garvey: 0

State Senate, Former

Gutshall: 2 (Mary Margaret Whipple, Ed Holland)

Garvey: 0

Combined Current/Former State Senators: Gutshall 3, Garvey 0

House of Delegates, Current

Gutshall: 2 (Rip Sullivan, Alfonso Lopez)

Garvey: 0

House of Delegates, Former

Gutshall: 1 (Karen Darner)

Garvey: 0

Combined Current/Former State Delegates: Gutshall 3, Garvey 0

County Board, Current

Gutshall: 1 (Jay Fisette)

Garvey: 0

County Board, Former

Gutshall: 6 (Mary Hynes, Walter Tejada, Chris Zimmerman, Joe Wholey, Mary Margaret Whipple, Paul Ferguson)

Garvey: 0
Combined Current/Former County Board Members: Gutshall 7, Garvey 0

School Board, Current

Gutshall: 1 (Reid Goldstein)

Garvey: 0

School Board, Former

Gutshall: 4 (Mary Hynes, Mary Margaret Whipple, Elaine Furlow, Ed Fendley),

Garvey: 3 (Abby Raphael, Frank Wilson, Noah Simon)

Combined Current/Former School Board Members: Gutshall 5, Garvey 3

Constitutional, Current

Gutshall: 1 (Paul Ferguson)

Garvey: 1 (Theo Stamos)

Constitutional, Former

Gutshall: 1 (Frank O’Leary)

Garvey: 0

Combined Current/Former Constitutional Officers: Gutshall 2, Garvey 1


Erik Gutshall is a longtime community leader in Arlington. A small business owner, and APS parent, Vice-Chair of the Planning Commission and Liaison to the Economic Development Commission, former Civic Association President and Board Member at Doorways for Women and Families, Gutshall is running in the Democratic primary for the Arlington County Board on June 14th.

  • O.C.

    First, you’re acting as if Machine endorsements matter. News flash: they don’t. If they did, we’d be hearing about how ancient “activists” like Lucy Denney, the Pegs (Hogan and Lorenz) and Tom Whipples support Gutshall. BTW, how’s that pesky-oily thing working for you, Tom?

    Second, you’re double-counting endorsements. You can’t count people as full endorsers from multiple positions. Whipples counts as a former official, half-Senate and half-County Board. Same with Hynes and Ferguson.

    Third, you’re reaching back for fossils like Wholey, Holland, and Furlow. Not to mention non-entities like Fendley. #sad

    Fourth, Libby’s current Board is clicking. Fisette’s boxed in and Libby has the votes now. But they can’t come out and support her because they need to mitigate or co-opt the regulars until they die off (see Point 1 above). So silence means they endorse Libby. John Vihstadt and Christian Dorsey, obviously. But also Don Beyer, Jim Moran, Katie Cristol, Patrick Hope, Ingrid Morroy, James Lander, Barbara Kanninen, Nancy Van Doren, Sally Baird (former SB), Mike Lane (former CB), David Foster (former SB), Bob Brink and Rob Krupicka (both former delegates).

    So when you unskew the endorsement count, adding 13 to Libby while reducing Gutshal by 3, you get a 17-13 edge for Libby. That’s about 56%, which is just about what John Vihstadt collected in HIS independent, bipartisan campaign two years ago.

    Look, Libby is a visionary, someone who understands Arlington. She was far ahead of everyone else in seeking seats for students right where they are; she just didn’t have the votes. She was WAY ahead of the Machine when she campaigned against the streetcar, but it took Vihstadt joining her to get the votes. And she’s way ahead of them in seeking to remove dollars from AHIF to rebate property taxes–showing she believes in affordable housing for EVERYONE and not just a select group of poors.

    When you’re a visionary, people will get jealous. It’s a fact of life. They’ll come “testify” at boring Commission meetings to the other regulars, wearing their VOICE or their “Mi Voz Cuenta” buttons. They have nothing better to do, while the people who drive our community’s prosperity and livability are busy working at their jobs, raising their families, cultivating their gardens, and coaching their kids’ soccer teams. This is why Libby formed the Blue Ribbon panel to cut through the “nonsense” that grows like weeds through the Arlington Way, so that a select group of people representing ALL of Arlington can focus on what matters.

    But the Libbytarians, the silent majority, will step up on the day of the open primary. No matter how carefully someone tries to structure the machine, EVERYONE gets to pull the lever!

    • LOL at “Machine endorsements” and “Libby is a visionary” and “the Libbytarians, the silent majority.” Thanks for the laughs! 🙂