With just six days until Virginia primary day 2023 next Tuesday, here are a few somewhat-last-minute, short-and-concise endorsements in Democratic primaries for VA Senate and House of Delegates. For previous Blue Virginia endorsements for the General Assembly see: Laura Jane Cohen for HD15, Adele McClure for HD2, Rae Cousins for HD79, Stella Pekarsky for SD36, Heidi Drauschak for SD35, Saddam Salim for SD37, Shyamali Hauth for HD37 and Russet Perry for SD31.
SD13: I’ve written a bunch of posts/tweets/etc. about why incumbent VA Sen. Joe Morrissey has to go (for just a few, see Video Released of Joe Morrissey Exclaiming: “I’m Proud to Vote Pro-Life and I will Side with Republicans in the Future on this Issue.”, This Is Not the Type of Person Who Should Be in the Virginia State Senate. Fortunately, There’s an Alternative., VA Senate Democratic Women Reject “the divisive and destructive actions of [Joe] Morrissey,” Endorses Former Del. Lashrecse Aird in the 6/20 Dem Primary, etc. – and why voters should replace him with former Del. Lashrecse Aird, but I just wanted to formally endorse Aird for the SD13 seat. This one’s about as big of a “no-brainer” as you can possibly get in a Democratic primary – Morrissey is an embarrassment who, if reelected, will be a thorn in the side of Senate Democrats (if he even stays in the party!), who could vote to restrict women’s reproductive freedom in Virginia, etc, etc. In stark contrast, former Del. Aird will be a STRONG, LOYAL Democrat and progressive. Can this primary choice be any clearer? Go Aird!
SD18: I’ve been clear for months that I support Sen. Louise Lucas for the nomination on 6/20 over her colleague, Sen. Lionell Spruill, but I realized I’ve never formally endorsed her, so…I’m doing that right now! The main reasons are: 1) Lucas has been a strong progressive and also a fierce, vocal opponent of Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s far-right agenda – in some ways the leader of the Virginia “resistance” to Youngkin’s destructive policies – and she deserves to be rewarded for that; 2) in stark contrast, Spruill hasn’t really criticized Youngkin and has, instead, tried to “appeal to his heart“…without success, for the most part; 3) Spruill has been tight with Dominion Energy for years, as exemplified by this bizarre incident in February 2022 in which Spruill weirdly claimed that Sen. Chap Petersen has a “real hard-on for Dominion” (don’t ask, lol!); 4) Spruill is a strong opponent of limiting or prohibiting political contributions from public service corporations like Dominion; 5) back in 2010, Spruill railed against the Democratic nominee against Republican Rep. Randy Forbes, stating “I’m not going to hell behind” a Democrat who said he was an atheist; 6) Spruill previously walked off the floor “to avoid voting on LGBTQ+ rights measures”; 7) Lucas is the first African-American and first female President pro tempore of the VA Senate; etc. For all those reasons – and more – GO LOUISE LUCAS!
SD27: This primary is between Ben Litchfield and Joel Griffin, and the main argument for Griffin appears to be that he’d have the best shot in November of winning this “purple” district (because he’s got access to $$$, supposedly has a more “moderate” profile, etc.). But in the end, I’m not sure that’s really clear, and we know for sure that Litchfield is a strong Democrat, progressive, environmentalist, etc. I also know, like and respect Ben Litchfield, while I simply don’t know Joel Griffin at all (his campaign said several weeks ago that they’d set up a time to chat, but that never happened). So I’m supporting Ben Litchfield for this nomination for those reasons – nothing against Joel Griffin and good luck in November to whichever candidate wins this nomination next Tuesday!
SD33: I was going to stay out of this primary between two women of color – former Del. Hala Ayala and Del. Jennifer Carroll Foy – but in the end, the fact that Ayala is heavily funded by fossil fuel interest like Dominion Energy and even the Mountain Valley Pipeline (!) people pushed me to support Carroll Foy, who is a super-strong progressive, environmentalist, etc., and also a more charismatic and forceful leader than Ayala, who ran a really lackluster, ineffective 2021 campaign for Lt. Governor against Winsome Sears.
SD40: I’ve had some issues with Sen. Barbara Favola over the years, but this time around it’s an easy call, as Favola’s challenger (James DeVita, who most Arlington Dems appear to have never heard of previously) isn’t really running a serious campaign, never really was involved in Virginia or local politics to my knowledge, isn’t nearly as qualified for this job as Favola, etc. Also, Favola has been a strong progressive and environmentalist who has vocally stood up to Glenn Youngkin’s destructive agenda, and that deserves reward – namely, her renomination next Tuesday.
HD82: I don’t know either of the candidates – Victor McKenzie or Kimberly Pope Adams – in this one, but I’ve heard a lot of great things about McKenzie from people whose political judgement I trust, and I’ve also been very impressed with what I’ve seen from McKenzie during this campaign. Also, from everything I’ve heard, I believe that McKenzie would have the best shot of winning back this crucial, “swing”/”purple” district for Democrats in November. Finally, I’d note that Adams in early April announced that she was withdrawing from the race, then “less than six hours” later, abruptly reversed course. Confusing.
HD84: Former Del. Nadarius Clark is a super-strong progressive and definitely deserves this nomination. Meanwhile, Clark’s opponent, Michele Joyce, is supported HEAVILY by Dominion Energy (in the last reporting period, $25k out of the $28k she raised was from that one company).
HD95: Former Del. Alex Askew was first elected in 2019 in a highly competitive/”purple” district, then *barely* (14,285-14,170) lost his seat in 2021 to Republican Karen Greenhalgh, who ran a truly appalling, racist campaign against Askew and has no business being in the House of Delegates. As for Askew, he did an excellent job the two years he was in the House of Delegates and most definitely did NOT deserve to lose his seat . So…let’s send Alex Askew back to Richmond!
HD96: This one boiled down to either Susan Hippen or Sean Monteiro, but given this story about Hippen taking money from Dominion Energy after pledging not to do so, and given that I think Monteiro is a strong progressive who has a VERY impressive background (e.g., “worked his way up to the rank of Colonel [in the U.S. Air Force]…went on to command and lead troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.”), I’ve decided to endorse Monteiro for this nomination.