Martedì, 24 Aprile, 2018

Northam, Gillespie win gubernatorial nominations in Virginia primaries

Parmenio Sano | 19 Giugno, 2017, 02:29

Gov. Ralph Northam has won the Democratic primary for governor, beating progressive candidate, former Rep. Tom Perriello, in their closely watched contest, according to the Associated Press. Meanwhile, about 363 thousand Republicans cast their vote with businessman and GOP operative "Ed" Gillespie taking the lead on their side. WIth 99 percent of precincts reporting, Gillespie appeared to eke out a razor-thin win of just more than a percentage point. Frank Wagner, a senator in the commonwealth's legislature, trailed in third place.

The Democrats have made elections in Virginia and Georgia a referendum on President Trump.

"When Tom Perriello entered the race a few months ago, nobody expected a competitive race", Stephanie Taylor, co-founder of the Progressive Change Campaign Commitee and a senior adviser to Perriello, wrote to Mic in a statement. Northam hopes to continue the work he started with McAuliffe and is focusing his campaign on economic progress.

Gillespie will face Democrat Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam in the general election.

He and his supporters claimed a moral victory in the loss, saying they forced Mr. Northam to run to the left.

Democratic Governors Association Chairman Dan Malloy of CT, meanwhile, said in a statment that Northam would "continue Governor McAuliffe's work of growing the economy, fighting for the middle class and protecting Virginians' health care".

"People ask me, 'Ralph, are you going to keep doing what Governor McAuliffe is doing?' I say, 'Damn right I am, ' " Northam said as the crowd roared.

"Perriello had a lot of support from national players, whether it was Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren or members of the Obama team", Chambers said.

"It is time for us to get back on offense and stop playing so much defense", Northam said. Mark Warner in 2014, when Democrats across the country were swept from office.


Although the Democratic contest garnered the most pre-election attention, Gillespie's narrow victory against Stewart, the former state campaign chairman for President Donald Trump, provided the night's biggest surprise.

Traditionally, Virginia is a conservative state, although the Washington, D.C. -fueled growth in the suburbs of Northern Virginia has increased Democrats' influence in the state.

While Stewart was all-in with Trump, Wagner based his run on his 25 years of experience in the General Assembly - a strategy that defied the anti-establishment fervor that accompanied Trump's rise.

Voters are also choosing candidates for lieutenant governor and several state House seats.

Annandale resident and former US attorney Justin Fairfax won the Democratic nomination for lieutenant governor with 49 percent of the vote.

Republican Bob Thomas, a Stafford County supervisor, won a three-way primary race in the 28th District. While Gillespie had his stronghold in Fairfax County, Stewart scored big in Loudon County, Prince William County as well as rural central and southwest regions of the state. Alexandria resident Curt Arledge, 32, had never voted in a gubernatorial primary before Tuesday but decided that this year that it was too important for him to miss.

That lack of enthusiasm may have affected turnout.

The most crowded GOP primary was a six-way contest for outgoing Del.

The Republican primary saw a noticeably lower voter turnout compared to the Democratic Party, with only 5.5 percent of registered voters casting ballots for the party. He energized many new-to-politics voters who oppose Trump but was ultimately unable to expand the universe of Democratic primary voters enough to counter Northam's advantages.

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