hey Virginia….VOTE!

13 Jun

It’s primary day here in Virginia.

As it is every year after a presidential election, Virginia will pick a new Governor in 2017 (it’s always a new one – that office is term-limited, no more than one four year stint, at least sequentially), and the media always focuses on the race as a litmus test for how the Republic is feeling about the newly elected administration.

The most common story this year is the Democratic primary for Governor, which a lot of people are categorizing as a fight “for the soul of the Democratic party”, as one candidate (Lt. Gov. Ralph Northham) represents the establishment, at least by convention, as he’s got the support of all the statewide elected officials (Gov McAulliffe, Senators Kaine and Warner, and AG Herring – all of VA’s statewide offices are Dems right now – thanks, interstate corridors!), and is touting his understanding of the Virginia political landscape as a way of getting things done, and another (former Congressman Tom Periello) is running as the populist upstart, with the endorsements of folks like Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth (swoon) Warren.

Three folks are running on the Republican side, but former RNC chair Ed Gillespie seems to have it all but wrapped up.

Also on the ballot is Lt. Governor (lots of former federal lawyers and state senators), and all the House of Delegates seats, and various and sundry other things.

My personal ballot’s only going to have the Statewide candidates (no primary for my House district; it’s possible the incumbent will be unopposed…argh); unsurprisingly, I’ll be picking the Democratic ballot, and casting my primary vote for Periello for Governor, mostly because I like the populist streak, and Liz Warren’s endorsement means something (not that Kaine’s doesn’t, but c’mon, Warren’s a superhero). I also like his position regarding creating jobs via localization of food and energy production (he uses the example of local craft breweries in VA revitalizing so many communities). That said, he and Northam are both very good candidates, and I’ll happily vote for either one in November.

For Lt. Governor, I’m going with Justin Fairfax, because I like a lot of his positions on small business (echoed by most of my business owner friends), the Democracy For America (PAC growing out of Howard Dean’s 2004 run) endorsement, and the endorsement of my congressional representative, Don McEachin, who’s done pretty well by my district since getting elected last year. Again, though, everybody looks pretty good overall.

My other bit of excitement about this one is that my daughter’s eligible to vote in this one (if you’ll be 18 by the general, they let you into the primary), which is a big deal to me.

So if you’re in VA, VOTE!

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