Now that the filing deadline has passed for the June 11 Democratic primaries, I’m going to start thinking about making endorsements in various races. Of course, some primaries require a lot more thought than others. Then there are a few that are a very easy, clear choice – basically, the ol’ “no brainer.”
For instance, I’ve known, liked and respected 11th State Senate District (53% Gillespie District; overwhelmingly in Chesterfield County, with 8% in Colonial Heights city and 6% in Amelia County; far-right Republican incumbent Sen. Amanda Chase) Democratic candidate Amanda Pohl for many years, back to when she was doing great work for Virginia Organizing (“a non-partisan statewide grassroots organization dedicated to challenging injustice by empowering people in local communities to address issues that affect the quality of their lives”). Here’s a brief bio of Pohl from her website:
Amanda has lived in Chesterfield and Amelia Counties most of her life, taking a short hiatus from the area to attend Virginia Tech in Blacksburg for her undergraduate degree (go Hokies!). Amanda is a wife, mom, nonprofit professional, deacon in her church, adjunct professor of Social Work, and current National President of her multicultural sorority.
Amanda and her husband, Tim, have lived in Chesterfield since they were married more than 15 years ago. They have lived in the same home for 13 years where they have enjoyed raising their two daughters.
Amanda served as a PRN chaplain for CJW Medical Center for 10 years and also served as a chaplain through clinical pastoral education at VCU Medical Center. She completed seminary at Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond and also holds an M.S. in Patient Counseling and MSW from Virginia Commonwealth University.
So yeah, Amanda Pohl is a highly impressive person in basically every way that I can determine. If you meet her, you’re almost sure to like her – a lot!
On the issues — from expanding healthcare coverage to strongly supporting public education; to “bring[ing] more jobs to Virginia and protect[ing] our natural resources by increasing our wind and solar energy production”; to ensuring equal rights for all Virginians, not “limited by the color of our skin, our sexual orientation, our gender identity, our background, our abilities, our age, our religion, our country of origin, or our socioeconomic class”; to fighting for women’s rights, including ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment; to “end[ing] sexual and domestic violence”; to expanding voting rights — Pohl is rock solid.
This is all, of course, in STARK contrast to gun-loving, gay “conversion therapy”-backing, ERA-opposing, anti-women’s-reproductive-choice/freedom, anti-public-education, etc. incumbent Amanda Chase. In short, Pohl would be an infinitely better State Senator for her district and for Virginia than Chase. I also believe, purely from a political “match up” perspective, that Pohl would be an excellent choice to go up against Chase in November (in part because she’s a woman, but mostly because of all the other stuff I’ve mentioned).
I had a long talk with Pohl a few weeks ago about her candidacy, and it reminded me why I like and admire her so much – she’s smart, sensible, compassionate, personable, highly knowledgeable about policy, and a fighter for what she believes in. For all those reasons, I strongly endorse her both for the Democratic nomination on June 11 and in the November 5 general election.
P.S. Just a quick note on why I’m *not* supporting the other candidate (Wayne Powell) in this Democratic primary. First off, Powell ran against Chase previously (in 2015) and got absolutely walloped (64%-36%). Second, Powell ran against Eric Cantor in 2012 (in VA07, currently represented by Democrat Abigail Spanberger) and got walloped again (58%-41%). Third, Powell ran in 2012 very much as a conservative Democrat, and not as what his campaign at the time called an “unthinking liberal.” Yuck. Fourth, if you look at who staffed Powell’s campaigns, it was folks like this guy (“Christian Rickers is head of the ‘Trumpocrats,’ a group of lifelong Democrats breaking from their party to vote for Donald Trump”) and this guy (“Dave ‘Mudcat’ Saunders, who’s helped guide politicians such as Sen. Mark Warner and former Sen. Jim Webb to victory in Virginia, says he’s voting for presumptive GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump over likely Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton”). Double yuck. So…no, thank you – on basically every level. Instead, go Amanda Pohl!