Democrats Dominate Virginia Elections


Democrat Ralph Northam won the 2017 Virginia gubernatiorial election by an eight-point margin. (Janet Krenn via Virginia Sea Grant)

One year after the 2016 general election, Democratic voters are ensuring that their voices are heard. In Virginia, frustrations about the current Trump administration have inspired an increase in Democratic turnout in state elections usually dominated by Republicans. As a result, Democrats won the governor’s mansion and gained 14 seats in the House of Delegates, giving them a one seat, razor-thin majority.

The gubernatorial race between Democrat Ralph Northam and Republican Ed Gillespie resulted in a Democratic victory by Northam who won over 53.9% of voters while Gillespie only won 45% . It is believed that the reason for Northam’s victory was a lash of anti-Trump sentiment. In his victory speech, Northam saidToday, Virginians have answered and spoken. Virginians have told us to end the divisiveness, that we will not condone hatred and bigotry, and to end the politics that have torn this country apart.

In addition, Virginia Democrats gained a monumental majority in the previously Republican controlled House of Delegates.  Danica Roem, the first openly transgender person to be elected to office in the United States, was a historic winner of a seat in the Virginia statehouse. Roem ran on the promise to fix traffic problems in the 13th district of Virginia, but was forced to defend her gender after her socially conservative opponent, Bob Marshall, refused to respect her female identity and continuously referred to her using male pronouns. Roem said that her victory was about “the people of the 13th District disregarding fear tactics, disregarding phobias . . . where we celebrate you because of who you are, not despite it.

Sources: Politico, New York Times, Democratic Governors Association, Washington Post

Photo: Flickr (License)