November 7, 2019 | From The Washington Times and CBN News
With anger at President Trump boiling over, Democrats steamrolled to victory in Virginia’s elections Tuesday, claiming majorities in both chambers of the General Assembly for the first time in two decades.
They captured Republican-held Senate seats in Northern Virginia and the Richmond area, according to unofficial returns, giving Democrats enough for control, with other pickups possible.
Discouraged by the election results?
Sign up for the IFA daily devotional series, Take Heart, Jesus Has Overcome the World!
In the House, where new district maps imposed by a court tilted the playing field toward Democrats, they claimed at least four wins and had a couple of more races in sight, according to the Virginia Public Access Project.
Democrats also appeared to have defended every one of their seats in both chambers, including reelecting Delegate Danica Roem, who broke ground two years ago winning as an openly transgender politician, and Delegate Lee Carter, who bills himself as a democratic socialist.
“Tonight, Virginia Democrats have once again made history. Starting this January, for the first time in decades, Democrats will control the House, Senate and the governor’s office,” said Susan Swecker, chairwoman of the state party.
Todd Gilbert is the majority leader in the Virginia House of Delegates. He said outsiders have spent big money in hopes of changing the balance of power in the commonwealth.
“The amount of money coming in mostly from the Democratic side—billionaires like George Soros and Tom Steyer, the environmentalist, and Michael Bloomberg are all pouring millions of dollars in Virginia races in trying to reshape our state and ultimately reshape the country,” Gilbert explained.
One week before Election Day, more than $82 million had been spent, making this the most expensive election in Virginia history.
“What has happened here in Virginia’s elections will reverberate throughout the country,” said Michael Keegan, president of the liberal activist group People for the American Way. “Flipping the General Assembly of this once-red state to blue puts Republicans on notice that voters have had enough of Donald Trump, Republicans, and their dangerous and divisive agenda.”
Indeed, voters said there was no doubt Mr. Trump was on their minds when they cast ballots — with the intensity far higher among Democrats.
“I just wanted to go against Trump. I find him absolutely repugnant,” said Peggy Chenoweth, 45, who voted for Democrats in a Senate seat in Loudoun and Prince William counties that flipped away from Republican control.
Sri Amudhanar, the Democratic candidate for Loudoun County Commissioner of the Revenue, said it was impossible to divorce Mr. Trump from the day’s races.
“They cannot separate them because the pull of national politics is so hard,” he said.
All 40 seats in the state’s Senate and all 100 seats in the House of Delegates were on the ballot, though only a handful of races were expected to decide control.
Republicans went into the night with an effective 51-49 lead in the House and a 21-19 edge in the Senate.
Democrats’ big night means the next session of the General Assembly will look dramatically different.
The federal Equal Rights Amendment could earn ratification in the state legislature after being blocked by Republicans. The state’s minimum wage could rise, and Virginia’s status as a right-to-work state could be challenged.
(Excerpts from The Washington Times and CBN News.)