Democratic candidates make the final pitch before the primary
By Marrett CEO
With the Virginia Democratic primary for governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general and a series of state delegate primaries to be held next Tuesday, the candidates have had a final say on the debate stage.
For the fourth and final time before a small audience, the five candidates for governor of Virginia faced off at Christopher Newport University in Newport News.
These candidates are Jennifer Carrol Foy, a native of Petersburg who once served in the House of Delegates, representing part of Prince William County; Of the. Lee Carter of Manassas represents the 50th arrondissement in the House of Delegates; Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax, who was elected in 2017 after serving as Assistant United States Attorney at the start of his career; Former Governor Terry McAuliffe, who served from 2014 to 2018 and was a businessman before that, as well as former Democratic National Committee Chairman and State Senator Jennifer McClellan represented voters in Richmond in the House of Delegates and Senate of Virginia since 2006.
McClellan’s goals, if elected, would be to rebuild Virginia’s economy by raising the minimum wage and creating a small business loan for the long-term effects of the pandemic, creating universal child care, and expand affordable reproductive and mental health care. She insisted on funding education when Alan asked her what she would do with the expected budget surplus of $ 500 million.
Quentin Kidd, director of the Watson Center for Public Policy at the CNU, said frontrunner McAuliffe couldn’t afford any mistakes as other candidates sought to reduce his lead. “Carroll Foy and McClellan should sue him,” Kidd predicted.
That’s exactly what the two did when they attacked the former governor almost successively after repeatedly mentioning Virginia Republican nominee Glen Youngkin and Donald Trump. Foy argued that McAuliffe and Youngkin at the top of the list would be just “two disconnected wealthy millionaire politicians who don’t understand the challenges Virginians face.” Carter argued that the campaign should be more focused on more inner leadership for the Commonwealth, rather than being “pitted against other guys, we’ve got to fight for something.” ”
With nearly $ 10 million raised, McAuliffe is clearly the man to beat in the race. After the former governor, Foy comes a long way at $ 3,693,838. McCLellan is not far behind at $ 1,700,030, followed by Fairfax at $ 300,391. Carter came in last with $ 138,702. That’s even less than Lieutenant Governor Xavier Warren’s hope of nearly $ 159,000.
With three African Americans on stage, including Fairfax who is only the second to hold a statewide post, timely questions have been asked about the recent racial injustice, a week after the one-year anniversary of George Floyd’s murder. , as well as on the tasing of the US military. Lieutenant Caron Nazario, who is black and Latino, in Windsor.
Fairfax was in favor of universal body cameras on police officers, ensuring they were turned on consistently, in addition to “bias training.”
McClellan highlighted her actions as a lawmaker and offered more options for investigations to curb similar incidents, such as referring them immediately to Citizen Review Boards or to the Attorney General’s office.
Foy also polled independent surveys. Carter highlighted a possible special session to address police reform.
McAuliffe also highlighted the issue of training and referred to his administration’s efforts to restore the rights of convicted felons.
Another factor McAuliffe was able to highlight during the debate, which other candidates lacked, were the numbers.
Asked about the poor conditions and the lack of 85 million masks, gloves and gowns never replaced at the end of the swine flu epidemic, he congratulated his successor Northam, because 66% of the population of Virginia received at least one dose to fight Covid-19.
McAuliffe was also asked about incumbent Governor Ralph Northam, who backed his predecessor, if he “stifled an important debate over whether the establishment wing of the party should give way to the progressive movement.” .
The former governor responded that he “doesn’t pay attention to labels,” and cited his administration’s accomplishments – on job creation as well as income and business growth.
Before a Covid-limited audience of no more than 50 in the audience on May 25, Virginia’s six Democratic candidates for lieutenant governor had their first and only debate.
The lieutenant governor’s race does not usually get much attention in Virginia, as it is usually a ceremonial position that serves as a stepping stone to becoming governor. This is the route Governor Ralph Northam took when he served as Lieutenant Governor in 2013 and became Governor four years later. Current Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax is trying to replicate that formula with his own aspirations for governor in this year’s election cycle.
Three candidates now sit in the House of Delegates, Dels. Sam Rasoul and Mark Levine are both running for re-election in addition to running for a statewide job, while Del. Hala Ayala is not seeking re-election. Another candidate, Norfolk Councilor Andria McClellan, has served since 2016 and sits on several boards and commissions.
The other two candidates, Xavier Warren, a former NFL agent, and Sean Perryman, a former president of Fairfax NAACP, spoke of personal accomplishments rather than elected politics that they helped sponsor.
McClellan said high speed internet for all Virginians was his biggest problem. Job growth and small businesses were at the center of Warren’s campaign. And Perryman focused on fairness as the primary cause.
Perryman also took a different approach to the issue of managing police reform. While Warren and Ayala both support all Virginia police officers wearing body cameras, Perryman has said he will fight to change so-called qualified immunity protections for law enforcement so that individual police officers can be prosecuted for their actions.
Levine, who represents Alexandria, touched on his political actions in many of his responses, particularly the importance of tackling gun violence.
“Virginians are nervous because it’s too easy for dangerous people to get hold of guns,” Del said. Mark Levine.
Campaign finance reform and fundraising were also brought up in the debate, with Virginia having one of the most relaxed campaign finance systems in the country.
The first question appeared to specifically target Rasoul’s strong lead to more than $ 1.3 million which had large donations from Muslim advocacy groups, according to data from the Washington Post. The moderators also asked Rasoul to address the issue of his faith as a representative of the Virginians if elected. The candidates as well as the chairman of the Democratic Party took to social media to show their contempt for the question after the debate, as no other candidate has been asked about his faith or seen his figures of fundraising questioned.
The winner of the primary on June 8 will face Republican gubernatorial candidate Glen Youngkin and former Del. Winsome Sears for Lieutenant Governor in this fall’s statewide election.