See below for video of Takis Karantonis, who was sworn in a few minutes ago as the new Arlington County Board member. On July 7, Karantonis won a special election with 62.4% of the vote. Karantonis replaces his friend, Democrat Erik Gutshall, who resigned from the Arlington County Board on April 6 as he battled brain cancer, a condition that would tragically take his life just ten days later. On May 7, Karantonis, had won the Arlington County Democratic Committee’s nomination for the seat, with 60.3% of the vote in the final round of “Instant Runoff Voting.” I strongly supported Takis Karantonis, for the reasons outlined here – basically, that he’ll make a superb, progressive County Board member and is the right person specifically to replace Erik Gutshall’s skillset. In short, it’s going to be almost impossible to replace Erik Gutshall on the Arlington County Board, but if anyone can come close to doing so, I believe it’s Takis Karantonis.
P.S. The entire swearing-in ceremony was excellent, albeit “distanced” due to COVID-19, but the most emotional part clearly listening to Renee Gutshall speak. Thank you to Renee for doing that; as Clerk of the Circuit Court Paul Ferguson said, “I wanted to thank Renee Gutshall for her beautiful words; Renee, we’re all thinking of Erik today, and that just took courage for you to be ableo to join us today and to speak, so thank you very much.”