Home 2017 Races Winners and Losers: Virginia Elections 2017

Winners and Losers: Virginia Elections 2017

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Here are a few winners and losers (note: this is not meant to be comprehensive, as that would be endless, boring, and exhausting! LOL) from this election cycle that I believe are worth highlighting. I’m not going to dwell much on the obvious winners (Northam, Fairfax, Herring) and losers (Gillespie, Vogel, Adams), but instead on ones that jump out at me. And again, this list isn’t even close to comprehensive, so please add winners and losers of your own in the comments section. Thanks.  Oh, one more thing – I’ve always asked people for their opinions, and many of them will be included below, but this year I “crowd sourced” to a greater extent than usual. So, a lot of the following aren’t really by me, but I’ve chosen to include them because I thought they were interesting, agreed with them, etc., so blame me if you don’t like them. 🙂

Winners

1. Tom Perriello: Talk about making lemonade out of lemons (his primary loss to Ralph Northam in June). Instead of doing what most primary losers do, which is go somewhere to sulk and not be helpful to the nominee (e.g., Brian Moran in 2009), Perriello garnered everyone’s attention and respect with what he did, both at a state and national level. In helping so many of the Democrats’ House of Delegates win their elections, Perriello now has built relationships all over the state, and in crass terms, probably racked up some serious “mojo” or “chits” or whatever. Oh, and Mama Perriello’s cookies – and campaigning – exemplified how this was a Team Perriello effort. The question is, what does Tom want to do with all the political and moral capital he’s built up over the past few months?

1a. Tom Perriello’s supporters in the Democratic primary: Just realized that I left this one out, was just kicking myself (hard) for doing so. Duh! Fact is, many times your candidate loses a Democratic primary, you say, “sure, I’ll vote for the Democratic primary, but I won’t lift a finger other than that.” Or maybe even, “I’m not voting for that such-and-such.” But in this case, overwhelmingly, that did NOT happen with Tom Perriello’s primary supporters (44% of the Democratic primary vote). Instead, from what I observed, a bunch of Perriello endorsers/supporters at the minimum were “loyal soldiers,” at the maximum worked their derrieres off for Ralph Northam, even though he wasn’t their (ok, OUR) pick in the primary. Just a few I’d like to call out by name include Cindy Cunningham, Carrie Pruett, Jonathan Sokolow, Adam Siegel, Emma Arata, Kenny Boddye, Jason Rylander, Julie Manning, Nancy Frowert, Yasmine Taeb, Boyd Walker, Kim Tucker, Tina Lewis Gateley, Linda Perriello, Julie Manning, Brennan Gilmore, Ian Sams…could go on all day. Oh, and of course, yours truly, who endorsed Tom but who worked my his off for Ralph/Justin/Mark/etc, just like the others (and many more) on this list. 🙂

2. Tom Perez/Democrats/DAGA/etc.: After a brutal year, is the Democratic National Committee back? I mean, they still have tons of work to do, but last night was just the shot in the arm they needed. And Tom Perez personally was very active in Virginia, something we Virginia Democrats greatly appreciate. Also, excellent work by the Democratic Attorneys General Association (DAGA), the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee (DLCC), etc.

3. The Resistance, people who marched at the Women’s March, other grassroots progressive groups that sprung up following Trump’s election:  All of the energy we saw at the Women’s March last January had to be translated into effective, local, on-the-ground and online activity, and there were a bunch of people and organizations that stepped up, from Code Blue to Indivisible to WOFA (“We of Action Virginia”) to Our Revolution to Emerge Virginia to Activate Virginia to activists like Stair Calhoun…just too many to mention. Great job, everyone.

4. Progressives: One respondent wrote me, “We all know that Ralph Northam is moderate in style, but there’s no doubt – from Northam to the House of Delegates – that last night was a progressive victory — a $15 per hour minimum wage, community college for all, criminal justice reform, embrace of undocumented immigrants, gun violence prevention and abortion rights.”

5. Northam campaign: I mean, there were tons of complaints about Northam as a candidate and the Northam campaign, but in the end, he won big time, so even if most of what happened yesterday about anti-Trump anger, still…the Northam folks (Brad Komar, by the way, was Northam’s campaign manager this year and in 2013, when he won the LG primary and general election) were victorious, which makes them – yep, winners! 🙂

6. Ralph Northam’s fundraising team: These folks raised incredible, record amounts of money for a Virginia governor’s race – $34 million through October 26 – and deserve a hand for that. Sure, our campaign finance system needs to change to get big money and corporate giving out of politics, but given that the system is how it is right now, the Northam folks played it at the highest level (with a big assist from Terry McAuliffe, I’m sure) – and won.

7. The revenge of Tracy Thorne-Begland: Remember how three Republican “colonels” – Mark Dudenhefer, Scott Lingamfelter and Rich Anderson – took to the floor of the Virginia House of Delegates to wrap themselves in the flag and to rail against a highly qualified judge, Tracy Thorne-Begland, simply because of his sexual orientation? Well, as of last night, we can say goodbye to all three – and good riddance to them!

8. Female/diverse candidates: Virginians elected a transgender woman last night. And two Latinas (Hala Ayala and Elizabeth Guzman). And Kathy Tran, a refugee from Vietnam and now the first Asian-American woman elected to Virginia’s House of Delegates. And many other women (e.g., Wendy Gooditis, Kelly Fowler, Karrie Delaney, Dawn Adams, Debra Rodman) and diverse candidates, including Jennifer Carroll Foy (a rising star, no doubt) and hopefully Donte Tanner (pending a recount). As always, it’s the Democratic Party which looks most like Virginia – and America.

9. Renewable energy and the environment: Just as the victory of Donald Trump over Hillary Clinton was the difference between a devastated environment and a thriving one, the victory of Northam/Fairfax/Herring over Gillespie/Vogel/Adams last night is a great thing if you, in any way/shape/form, care about protecting our environment, moving off of fossil fuels and towards clean energy, etc. Of course, we need to keep up pressure against Dominion’s proposed fracked-gas pipelines. Also, as a commenter noted to me, “Northam is not what he could/should be on climate.  Can we hope for him to improve?” But overall, people who care about the environment – which I sure hope is all of us – should be happy about last night’s election results. By the way, a shoutout to the environmental groups (LCV, etc.) who helped Democrats win last night.

10. Latinos/Immigrants: After all the disgusting xenophobia and race-baiting crap from Ed Gillespie (MS-13 is coming to rape and kill you, lock up the wife and kids now!!!), Latinos triumphed last night in several ways. First, they elected a ticket – Northam/Fairfax/Herring – who are all open and welcoming, including to immigrants. Second, two Latinas were elected to the Virginia House of Delegates yesterday – Hala Ayala and Elizabeth Guzman – the first in Virginia history. So, congratulations to Latino Virginians, and know that Democrats stand in solidarity with you, even/especially as the Party of Trump wages war against your community.

11. Mark Herring’s Political Director: I don’t know him, but I’ve heard great things about Fernando Mercado Violand. As an added bonus, I hear he’s related to former Arlington County School Board member Emma Violand-Sanchez, who I always found to be highly impressive.

12. Hard-working, dedicated Democratic Party people: As Arlington School Board member writes on my Facebook page, “Emerge and Moms Demand Action were big winners. I also believe our traditional party structure deserves a shout-out. We had amazing first-time candidates emerge all over the state and people like Susan Swecker, Margo Horner, Linda Brooks (women’s caucus), Kip Malinosky were there with structures to support them all the way. ACDC’s Beyond Arlington initiative helped several candidates around the state.”  Also in Arlington, I’m specifically told that Jill Caiazzo did great work “for her indefatigable work on behalf of the Joint Campaign; Steve Baker “for his Beyond Arlington year-long effort”; Rip Sullivan “for his role in recruiting candidates and raising money”; also Josh Katcher and Mark Teel for their great work on in-person absentee voting, Sara Steinberger on voter registration, etc.  And in Fairfax County, Chair Sue Langley, Vice Chair Chris Ambrose, Executive Director Frank Anderson, Vice Chair Dan Lagana and many others did great work. As did the Prince William County Dems this cycle…nice job. I could go on and on, but you get the idea.

13. PCCC: Kenton Ngo and the rest of the gang at the Progressive Campaign Change Committe (PCCC) raised $115k for Virginia House of Delegates candidates and $10k for Justin Fairfax from over 45k small online donations. They helped elect Jennifer Carroll Foy, Chris Hurst, Elizabeth Guzman, Danica Roem, Schuyler VanValkenburg, Wendy Gooditis, Donte Tanner, Lee Carter, Adams, Kathy Tran, David Reid, Karrie Delaney, Hala Ayala, and of course Justin Fairfax. Also Shelly Simonds if that recount comes through. Not too shabby!

14. Larry Roberts: Justin Fairfax’s campaign chair used to be Governor Tim Kaine’s right-hand man (Counselor to the Governor and Chief of Staff to the DNC Chairman), now is fresh off yet ANOTHER big win, this time with Justin Fairfax. It will be interesting to see if Roberts plays a continuing, major role with Lt. Governor Fairfax, or potentially in a 2021 Fairfax run for governor? Stay tuned…

15. DCCC Chair Ben Lujan: The DCCC now has much more realistic dreams of winning back a majority in the U.S. House of Representatives next year. Their fundraising and recruitment just became significantly easier.

16. Northern Virginia: It is now almost impossible for Republicans to win statewide with a fired-up, vote-rich Northern Virginia. Which is what Northern Virginia seems to be in the age of Trump.

17. Blue Virginia: Hate to toot our own horn, but we did provide exhaustive coverage – from a Democratic, progressive perspective – of Virginia politics during 2017, and I believe we did it very well (if I do say so myself). it wasn’t just me, of course, but a team of contributors, as well as our tech guru Brendan Lilly of course, who keeps this site humming along. Brendan informs me that “In the year since Donald Trump was elected Blue Virginia has had more than two million visitors and seven million page views, a roughly 20% increase traffic over 2016.” That includes “246k page views last three days,” in the runup to yesterday’s election, and “360k visitors, 483k sessions (visits, not unique), and 1.03 million page views” over the past month, also in the runup to yesterday’s election. Did that play any role in Democratic victories yesterday? I mean, 360,000 visitors is a lot of people, especially when you consider that Northam won by under 300,000 votes, Fairfax by around 140,000 votes, and Herring by about 180,000 votes. And that doesn’t even touch on the publicity and help we gave to so many House of Delegates candidates. Note that this is all funded by advertising and/or reader contributions, which – hint hint – you’re more than welcome to do. 😉 Thanks.

18. House Democratic Leadership: Several House Democratic leaders spent untold hours the past couple years recruiting candidates, training candidates, advising candidates, etc, etc. A few of those include House Democratic Leader David Toscano, Del. Charniele Herring, Del. Alfonso Lopez and Del. Rip Sullivan. It’s also worth giving a hand to the House Democrats’ professional team, including Executive Director Trent Armitage. Nice work, everybody! P.S. Rip Sullivan’s Chief of Staff, Kate Peterson, adds, “Yeah I’m biased but Rip Sullivan is a clear winner. This year House Democrats needed a Campaign Chair who understood the complexities of running in different parts of the Commonwealth, had the tact and open-mindedness to communicate with ALL Democrats regardless of where they fell on the progressive spectrum, had the resilience and courage to ask for the resources needed to help Democrats fund their campaigns, and never, ever gave up on his dream of achieving a majority in the HoD. He was inspired and acted on that inspiration and by god it paid off.”

19. David Toscano: Toiling away for years in the (small) minority, the possibility that Toscano will become Speaker of the House is actually a “thing.”  We’ll see in the next few days, but regardless, Toscano has at the minimum led Virginia House Democrats back to relevance and clout. A major accomplishment.

20. Medicaid Expansion and many other progressive priorities: With the Democrats having a serious shot at taking back the Virginia House of Delegates (or getting it to a 50-50 ties), Medicaid expansion looks alive again. As do a million other progressive priorities, from funding our schools, moving towards a clean energy economy (e.g., how about an aggressive, mandatory Renewable Portfolio Standard? decoupling? an aggressive push for distributed power?), protecting a woman’s right to choose, enacting commonsense gun violence prevention measures, making restoration of voting rights automatic upon completion of sentence and parole, making voting in Virginia EASIER not harder, etc., etc. Now, we just need to get rid of dinosaurs like Dick Saslaw in the State Senate, and also take back that chamber in 2019 (or earlier, if any Republicans bug out) and we could really start moving this state “forward together.”

21. The people of Virginia: For starters, we will continue have competent, strong leadership in the statewide offices, plus a House of Delegates that looks – and hopefully acts – a LOT more like Virginia.

22. Women’s reproductive freedom: With the “brick wall” in the Governor’s Mansion staying in place, and with a MUCH friendlier House of Delegates, a woman’s right to choose in Virginia looks safe for the next few years.

23. Lori Haas and the Virginia gun violence prevention community: The NRA spent a ton of money in this election and had absolutely nothing to show for it. Meanwhile, we now have a bunch of new members of the Virginia House of Delegates who believe in commonsense gun violence prevention measures, such as universal background checks, limits on handgun purchases and high-powered weapons, etc. So…nice job, and let’s start winning some victories in Virginia!

24. Virginia Democratic Tech Geniuses: From a comment by Brian Devine on my Facebook page “Unsung hero: Dave Leichtman  and the Va Dem tech group working behind the scenes to make sure all our candidates had the digital infrastructure they needed to win.”

25. Everyone who stepped up to run for House of Delegates, even in deep-red areas; Competitive Commonwealth Fund. From a comment by Dan Press on my Facebook page – “Winners – the Competitive Commonwealth Fund and all the groups supporting candidates that no one thought could win. We won a bunch of those (with even a CCF candidate in a dead heat), and kept GOP money at home.” And as Del. Paul Krizek added, “CCF was a big winner, as well as all of their backers who believed in supporting the ‘no hopers!” Great job!”

26. Women. From a comment on my FB page – “We elected reproductive health champions up and down the ballot, and Gillespie especially fully embraced being anti abortion and anti Planned Parenthood.” Another comment – “Women ran. For school board. For House of Delegates. Women knocked and dialed and texted. They drove GOTV. Women voted. In 39-degree cold and pouring rain. And they didn’t complain. Women won and won big.
This win was for every mother, daughter, wife, girlfriend, friend, co-worker.”

27. Terry McAuliffe. As a comment on my FB page said, “McAuliffe was a huge winner, and will now start his 2020 campaign.” McAuliffe hand picked Ralph Northam as his successor, and Northam won by 9 points last night, along with a landslide for Democrats against Republicans across the board. McAuliffe also will leave office as a relatively popular (although not wildly so) chief executive, with a strong economy (despite Ed Gillespie’s constant efforts to talk it down), one of the nation’s lowest unemployment rates, etc. I still don’t think he has a shot at the Democratic nomination for president in 2020, but last night certainly didn’t hurt matters!

28. LBTQ Community: From a contributor – “Symbolic and real Danica Roem win along with generalized message about inclusiveness embraced by a majority of Virginians.” Also, Dawn Adams is openly lesbian.

Mixed

1. LiUNA: This union, which is heavily about building fossil fuel pipelines (could they be more wrong on this? nope, they could not), donated heavily to Democrats and were rewarded last night. However, they also made a serious misstep in not endorsing Justin Fairfax – who opposes their preccccious pipelines – and even leaving him off a campaign flier, creating a serious, unhelpful controversy. Also, with a much more progressive House of Delegates and an energized environmental “base,” we’ll see how those fracked gas pipelines fare…hopefully not well.

2. Del. Sam Rasoul: I’ve heard some significant complaints about Rasoul, including from people who like him, over his negative comments to the Richmond Times-Dispatch over the Latino Victory ad. I’ve also heard complaints that, in general, Rasoul tends to not be a team player who advocates unilateral disarmament by Democrats in the face of an existential threat posed by Trump Republicans. On the other hand, I hear others praising Rasoul for his rural initiative, “Democratic Promise.” So…mixed bag here.

3. Newspaper editorial page endorsements: I mean, there was some seriously stupid s***, including the Republican Times-Disgrace, Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star, Daily Progress, InsideNOVA, etc. endorsing Gillespie/Vogel/Adams, despite (because of?) their campaigns of hate and divisiveness. Then there were the Virginian Pilot and Daily Press, which got some of the picks rights, some of them (wildly) wrong, but which both played the “both sides” false equivalency game to a laughable extent. Fortunately, Lee Hockstader (of all people, given how awful he usually is) over at the Washington Post saved the day, nailing his governor, LG and AG endorsements. Other than that, the newspaper editorial boards of Virginia didn’t do themselves proud this election…

4. Polling. Check out my post on that this morning. In short, Quinnipiac and CNU did very well, Hampton did horribly, and others were in between.

Losers

1. Donald Trump: This one’s obvious, but still, it’s so much fun to put Trump as the #1 loser! 🙂 No question, last night was a huge slap in the face to the Orange Gropenfuhrer and complicates everything for him and his Trump-enabling party. Trump already was viewed as ineffective politically (and in every other way); the crushing GOP loss last night in Virginia may have slammed the door on Trump making a comeback anytime soon – or ever.

2. Ed Gillespie: Made a Faustian deal with the devil (e.g., Corey Stewart, the “alt right”), sold his soul (whatever soul a corporate goon has) – yet STILL lost. Badly. The only thing worse than losing an election is not being able to be proud of your effort. And let’s be clear; Gillespie has absolutely nothing to be proud of, and a LOT to be ashamed of, in what will most likely be his last political hurrah. A sad end to a…well, sad career, really.

3. Pundits and prognosticators like Chris Cillizza, John Fredericks, “Morning Joke,” etc: Cillizza, of course, is one of the worst – if not the worst – political pundit in America. I mean, just hours before Northam’s crushing, blowout win last night, Cillizza was out with his usual, moronic “hot take” – “Are Democrats blowing it in Virginia?” No, Chris, we’re not blowing it, but you blow. LOL  As for “Morning Joke,” their “hot take” yesterday was that Ralph Northam was dooooomed….DOOMED I say! LOL And as for former Virginia Trump co-chair and far-right radio host John Fredericks, his predictions were as wildly wrong as they usually are – see here and here for his hilariously, trollishly bad “analysis” and “predictions,” almost every one of which was wildly wrong. Of course, this person’s also a Trump dead ender who regularly has EW Jackson and others of his ilk on his show, so what else would you expect…

4. Del. “Sideshow Bob” Marshall: The irony of this rabid homophobic nutjob losing to a transgender woman is just…delicious. Although I’ll miss using my “Sideshow Bob” nickname, other than that – good riddance to one of the worst of the worst.

5. Corey Stewart: One of the most noxious, despicable Virginia politicians around – and this is not a new phenomenon; Corey’s been horrible since at least 2007 – saw his Trumpist, vicious, lunatic brand of politics completely rejected last night in Virginia. Sure, he’ll probably double down (if he hasn’t already) and claim Gillespie wasn’t nasty ENOUGH, but face it, Virginians don’t want what Corey Stewart is peddling. Just as bad for the Chairman of the Prince William County Board of Supervisors, that majority minority county stood up last night and did a number on Republicans, voting 61%-38% for Ralph Northam, while booting out several right-wing Republican members of the House of Delegates from their county. In short, Corey’s days as a Prince William County politician are numbered, and he probably knows it, which helps explain his desperate, already well-off-the-deep-end run against Sen. Tim Kaine (who probably should have made the winners list simply because Corey’s looking so weak now…). Good luck with that, dude!

6. Democracy for America (DFA): After their utter idiocy in Virginia in the days leading up to the election, they are TOAST – or should be.  I mean, even their founder, Howard Dean, blasted and disowned them. Heck, I didn’t even realize they were still around, but they’re done for real now – and if not, they certainly SHOULD be done. Screw them. (by the way, they wildly overpromised and underperformed in Virginia in 2013 as well, so their record of #FAIL goes back a few years…)

7. Partisan Gerrymandering: Virginia Democrats have a responsibility to enact a non-partisan and fair way for states to create congressional districts when that time comes around. And doing the honorable thing will likely net a couple seats, if we haven’t already won them in 2018. Of course, we still have corrupt slimeballs of our own like Senate Minority Leader Dick Saslaw to deal with, but one thing at a time I guess.  Oh, also, keep in mind that with Ralph Northam as governor, Democrats will have a major say in redistricting after the 2020 census. Of course, after last night, Republicans saw how partisan gerrymandering can sometimes backfire, badly, with almost all their “Hillary Clinton districts” collapsing last night, kinda like Jenga. Ironic that one of the architects of modern GOP partisan gerrymandering was…yep, Ed Gillespie, who got his butt kicked last night. Hahahahaha.  But seriously, the arrogance of Virginia Republicans assuming that nothing would ever change with their majority build on gerrymandering and air just met that harsh thing called “reality.”

8. Donna Brazile: What a stupid move. Lost a lot of respect from people for using the last five days of a crucial election – not just for Virginia but for the entire country – to stir things up and sell a book. I really used to respect her…

9. The NRA: They poured money into Virginia to help their gun-loving pals Ed Gillespie, Jill Vogel, John Adams, etc. And they got their butts completely handed to them. I’d feel sorry for them, except…nope, they are blood-soaked, evil ghouls.

10. The Koch brothers: Also poured money into Virginia to slime Ralph Northam, and…got their pasty, fascistic asses handed to them. Again, I’d feel sorry for them, except they’re ghouls themselves.

11. Dominion Energy: Northam isn’t a threat, but a Democratic/progressive House of Delegates most certainly is, and the potential for a Democratic Senate – particularly one without corrupt ol’ Dick Saslaw – could cause Dominion Energy a lot of well-deserved problems. Also, the empowered progressive/environmentalist base which united to defeat Gillespie may also raise serious hell for Northam if he doesn’t do something to slow or stop the pipelines.

12. The proposed fracked-gas pipeline monstrosities: As environmentalist and 8th CD Democrat Jason Rylander writes, “The pipeline is a big loser in this fight. We elected 16 (or more) new Democrats to the House – 13 of which, I believe, took the no Dominion Money pledge. Those folks – some of them at least – could be vocal allies for oversight of Dominion generally and the pipelines specifically. Second, Fairfax is opposed and Northam now has room to change the head of DEQ and demand the stream by stream crossing analysis that he SAID he would demand. Third, Ralph will advance T-Mac’s (belated but meaningful) renewables push, all of which will continue to make the argument for the pipeline’s necessity irrelevant.”

13. John Whitbeck:  I call the VA GOP “Whit-less” for many reasons, including his anti-Semitic “joke,” his constant stream of “Baghdad Bob” like disinformation and lunacy, his ineptitude, you name it. But yeah, last night was not a good one for our pal Whit-less. What does he do next? Double down with his idols, Donald Trump, Mike Pence, etc? Go all out for neo-Confederate, racist nutjob Corey Stewart against Tim Kaine next year? Resign? Take up basket weaving as a new hobby? LOL

14. Corporate media coverage of Virginia down-ballot races: Other than 20-gazillion variants on “transgender woman takes on anti-LGBT man,” how much serious coverage did the corporate media give to Virginia House of Delegates candidates and races? Not much, from what I could tell. If you wanted that, you needed to read blogs like…yeah, Blue Virginia. Other than that, you were pretty much SOL. The sad decline of our corporate media continues…

15. Corporate media coverage of the governor’s race: With a few exceptions, it was the usual drivel – lots of horse race coverage, repeating the conventional wisdom, “both sides” false equivalency, fluffy “personality” pieces, blech.

16. Barbara Comstock: Aside from a wipeout of Republicans last night in northern Virginia, check out the following graphic, which should send shivers up and down the spines of Comstock and her political advisors. That’s right, Ralph Northam won the 10th CD by 13 points (55.9%-43.1%) last night, after Hillary Clinton carried the 10th CD last year. And to make matters even worse, there are a bunch of Democrats chomping at the bit, and raising shit-tons of money, for the chance of taking Comstock down next year. Maybe time for Comstock to go back to oppo research or whatever she’s into these days?

16. Republican politicians all over America. Paul Ryan should be looking over his shoulder worried about a repeat next year. As should basically every elected Republican official in America. Watch out!

17. Fairfax County School Board member Elizabeth Schultz: The woman’s off-the-far-right deep end, but still…here’s her classy statement last night on her Twitter feed about the Democrats’ big night. “No. That politics of personal destruction, felon-voting, Saul Alinsky tactics of pure hate, primary-stealing & vile racist-messaging wins? Feel free to be proud & do own that…with congratulations.” Fortunately, Schultz is almost certainly toast politically in two years, so enjoy it while you can, I guess?

18. Jim Webb: The former Democratic U.S. Senator from Virginia has apparently disappeared, at least as far as helping elect Democrats in Virginia. I mean, hell, he was for f’ing Trump last year! And this year, didn’t hear a peep from him, let alone any help in electing Democrats yesterday. From all of us formerly in your “ragtag arm,” all I have to say is, thanks a lot, a**hole. Oh, and while I’m glad to see that Doug Wilder endorsed one of the members of the statewide Democratic ticket (Justin Fairfax), would it REALLY have killed him to endorse the other two? Just sayin’…

19. Stephen Bannon: From a comment by Paul Friedman on my Facebook page – “Stephen Bannon is a big loser. He endorsed Gillespie a few days out and his message, some of which Gillespie used, fell flat.”

20. Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce: I mean, this is basically an arm of the GOP, so what else would one expect? Still, endorsing the trio of xenophobia, race-baiting, etc. doesn’t exactly seem good for business!

21. Chris LaCivita: The “Swift Boat” dude has worked numerous Republican campaigns in Virginia, including George Allen in 2006. This year, he consulted to Republican House of Delegates candidate Subba Kolla against Del. John Bell (D), and guided his candidate to…a crushing defeat (62%-38%), despite raising a ton of money. Great job, Swift Boat dude! LOL

22. Richard Spencer and White Supremacists. They marched in Charlottesville with their idiotic tiki torches. Their march resulted, directly or indirectly, in the death of three people and the disruption of a community. And last night, the voters of Virginia roundly rejected them. Such a shame, eh?

23. Corporate lobbyists: These guys spend years building relationships in the Virginia General Assembly, in recent years with top Republicans. Last night, many of those Republicans – Jim LeMunyon, Jackson Miller, Scott Lingamfelter, Manoli Loupassi, Tag Greason, John O’Bannon and hopefully Tim Hugo – lost, which means that many, many years of courting these slimeballs goes down the drain. So sad! LOL

  • sonofkenny

    Unfortunately the canvas in District 40 yielded enough votes to put Hugo up by 118…looks over there.

    • Gullyterrier

      Sad.

    • Perseus1986

      Has District 94 been recounted yet? It still reads the same as this morning, the R incumbent up by a whopping 12.

      • Good question; not sure.

        • Philip Whitman

          No recount yet. From what I hear the canvass increased the margin to 13.

  • notjohnsmosby

    From CNN: The winning formula for Democrats in Virginia is now shockingly simple:
    Run up the score — bigly — in northern Virginia. Northam beat
    Gillespie by 212,000 votes in Arlington (+52,000), Fairfax (+137,000)
    and Loudoun (+23,000). His statewide margin? Two-hundred and thirty-two
    thousand votes.

  • Video: Stephen Colbet on “Ed Gillespie Loses In Virginia… Thanks To Don. Jr.”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tIWUprLNOkQ

  • Great observations by Matt Weinstein of the Arlington Dems:

    Some off the top of my head takeaways from last night’s historic election:
    1. Medicaid expansion will (might) happen
    2. Ralph can veto any hyperpartisan R redistricting maps in 2021 which means the VA House and Senate will be competitive for the next decade +
    3. House R leadership was gutted last night. The whip, caucus chair, at least 4 members of the powerful House Appropriations Committee, two budget conferees, and the chair of the Transportation Committee all lost. This is huge.
    4. Loudoun and Prince William County are Democratic in statewide elections. There is no way the Rs can win statewide if they keep losing these two counties by 20+.
    5. NoVa will be a near insurmountable wall for statewide elections because of Arlington, Alexandria, and Fairfax.
    6. The Richmond powerbrokers must be in a state of shock. Almost every influential lobbyist is an extremely well-connected Republican. Most have never had to actually work with House Dems before.
    7. The Dems now have a bench.
    8. We cannot rest on our laurels in 2018.

  • woodrowfan

    feel good!! Last year the night after the election my wife and I went out to dinner with two friends to commemorate. We felt so awful. Tonight my wife and I are going to the same place to eat to celebrate!!!

    side note on the whole “felon-voting” issue. Even the republicans working with me at our polling place last night didn’t see why people who had “paid their debt to society” should not vote. That both surprised and pleased me.

  • susan swecker

    I love reading the winners list and comments. There is no way to fully express or know what was happening on the ground unless you were out there; so my hat goes off to all the hard working Democratic leaders and activists that doubled down and did the crucial and behind the scenes work. You are my heroes and sheroes! Secondly, don’t forget #TrumpChicken and #ChickenBoy! Not only did the big Chicken get under the Gillispie camp’s skin, it provided a well needed boost of levity in the closing days!

    • Yeah, I’d have to say #TrumpChicken and #ChickenBoy were egggggcellent, definitely didn’t lay an egg there, all they were cracked up to be….ok, enough 😉

    • Kindler

      Per your first point: Yes, so much of the analysis focuses on the demographics and other statistics, but…doors don’t knock themselves. At the ground level, you see how people-powered this all is, and what a difference it makes who shows up, or fails to.

  • Perseus1986

    First of all Thank you Lowkell for maintaining this blog and having it be a key source of news and communication in the year long lead up to this election!

    Comments and Questions:

    1) “What will Tom Perriello do next?”- Go after his old seat maybe?
    2) Re: Sam Rasoul- “tends to not be a team player who advocates unilateral disarmament by Democrats”- What do you mean by this exactly? That he attacks campaigning Democrats in the mode of Bernie Sanders and DFA for not being pure or left enough? I follow him on Facebook and didn’t really notice anything, though I am tucked away here in Arlington so I have no actual perspective other than what he puts out there.
    3)Re: Elizabeth Schultz- How?! is this person a school board member in Fairfax County? I can’t even see how Fairfax County Republicans (many of whom I assume are of the socially liberal, low taxes variety) would want to put an Alex Jones follower in charge of the management of their children’s education. How on earth did she sneak into the board? Where does she serve? Please let me know in case I move to the county to either to avoid her sphere of influnce or be able to vote her out.

    Also, does anyone know if there is a ready data analysis out that assesses voting last night based on U.S. Congressional District? I would assume Comstock would be out if she was up against that turnout. It looks like Taylor would’ve been too because he was bashing Trumpism today rather than saying that the GOPers lost because they weren’t Trump enough.

    • 1. Not sure, hope to sit down with him and discuss the past/present/future at some point.
      2. Complaints that Sam disagrees with pretty much everything the caucus wants to do, was quoted in the newspaper about the Latino Victory ad in a way that was not helpful, that he wants Dems to unilaterally disarm when it comes to money, etc, etc.
      3. Great question how a loon like Schultz could ever have been elected to a school board, let alone in Fairfax County, but my guess is she’ll be outta there in 2019. Still….yeah, WTF? This is what happens when Dems don’t vote (in this case in the Springfield magisterial district back in 2015).

      On the last question, see
      https://twitter.com/JMilesColeman/status/928103603407122432

  • Quizzical

    Add the Republican Congress to the list of losers.

  • Bull

    The bull elefant commenter think Comstock might see the writing on the blue wall and decide to run for Senate instead… but wouldnt Stewart still win the repubs expected convention?

    • Jason Rylander

      They can’t possibly win with Corey Stewart.

      • Agreed; we are going to demolish Corey as bad or worse than Northan did to Gillespie on Tuesday.

  • Rees Shearer

    Another winner – Activate Virginia – for persuading 77 delegate candidates to sign on to a pledge not to take campaign donations from public utilities.

  • RobertColgan

    “10. The Koch brothers: Also poured money into Virginia to slime Ralph Northam, and…got their pasty, fascistic asses handed to them. Again, I’d feel sorry for them, except they’re ghouls themselves.”
    Heh, wish I’d written this. Good one, Lowell.

    My fervent hope is that the gerrymandered districts get the gerrymandering undone——-so that people like Kellen Squire have a shot. Good man, that one. We deserve people who represent people, not corporations.
    The other wish is that people no longer simply kneejerk vote an “R” or a “D” without carefully vetting their choices…… . .but too many people are the “horses returning to their stalls in the burning barn” as we too well know.

  • Julie

    Winners 18. Disappointingly left off your h/t to House Leaderahip was Delegate Jennifer Boysko who is the caucus finance chair. She raised a Ron in money, partnered with WINVA early and fought to expand the map of candidates the caucus supported. She mentored candidates and stayed in contact with all of them. She was always responsive and reachable.

    • News to me, never heard a word from her.

      • notjohnsmosby

        You never saw all of the “Run Everywhere” emails and campaign updates?

  • Anonymous Is A Woman

    I would add to other winners: primaries – we can put to rest the notion that a primary weakens a good candidate and causes us to lose the general election. That proved to be not true and that means more democracy and choice. It was the primary that gave Northam a dress rehearsal for the main show. I think he was a better candidate and had greater name recognition going into the November race because of it.

    I agree about Tom Perriello. He worked his heart out for Dems up and down the state and built up great moral capital.

    Labor, except for LIUNA, is a winner. The state AFL-CIO endorsed the whole ticket and worked as hard as anybody to get their members out to vote. All the central labor councils had record GOTV turnout for canvassing and phone banks. And Republicans are inherently more anti-labor than Democrats, so this is a win for Virginia organized labor.

    As for LIUNA, the truth is they would be just as happy to build a bridge or new building as a gas pipeline. They just want jobs and are not wedded to pipelines. It’s just what was available. We need to get our electeds to support shovel ready infrastructure projects and to make investments similar to the early Obama administration American Reinvestment and Recovery Act grants for building. Or at least support project-labor agreements so companies can build using American labor. Barbara Comstock was a major force against the PLAs when she was a delegate.It’s another issue labor-oriented Democrats can rally around. That and a $15 minimum wage.