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Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Fairfax County voters help Northam win election for governor

Ralph Northam speaks to supporters after being elected governor of Virginia.
Ralph Northam’s overwhelmingly strong showing in Fairfax County and the rest of Northern Virginia helped him win the election for Virginia governor Nov. 7.

Northam, the Democratic lieutenant governor, got 53.9 percent of the vote statewide, compared to 44.9 percent for Republican challenger Ed Gillespie, the Virginia Department of Elections reports.

In Fairfax County, the split was 67.9 percent vs. 31.2 percent.

In a race that had been predicted to be close, the huge win for Northam is seen as a rejection of President Trump and a bellwether for the mid-term congressional elections in 2018.

In a victory speech at George Mason University, Northam condemned “the politics of divisiveness.” A pediatric neurologist, Northam told the crowd, “In Virginia it’s going to take a doctor to heal our differences. The doctor is in.”

What people want, he said, are jobs, access to affordable healthcare, world-class education, clean water and air, and communities that are safe, and said, “We live in a very diverse society; that’s what made this country great.”

Justin Fairfax of Annandale, a former federal prosecutor, easily beat Republican state Sen. Jill Vogel with 52.7 percent (67.2 percent in Fairfax County). Vogel, an outspoken Trump supporter, got 42.25 percent statewide.

In the race for attorney general, the Democratic incumbent, Mark Herring, got 53.9 percent of the vote (76.2 percent in Fairfax County), beating Republican John Adams.

In Mason District, the precincts with the largest margins for Northam were Crossroads (85.5 percent), Plaza (84.3 percent), Skyline (81.8 percent), and Holmes 2 (81.4 percent). Northam won every precinct in Mason District by at least 62 percent.

Democrats also did extremely well in House of Delegate races. In Northern Virginia, Republican incumbent Jim LeMunyon was ousted by Karrie Delaney. Danica Roem, a transgender Democrat, beat Republican incumbent and avowed homophobe Bob Marshall. A tight race in which longtime Republican incumbent Tim Hugo was challenged by newcomer Donte Tanner is headed for a recount.

Democrats picked up at least 15 seats and may win more following recounts. Before the election, Republicans held 66 of 100 seats in the House of Delegates.

In the 38th District, which encompasses most of Annandale, Del. Kaye Kory, the longtime Democratic incumbent, got 73.5 percent of the vote, compared to 26.3 percent for her Republican opponent, Paul Haring.

In the 49th District, the Democratic incumbent Alfonso Lopez beat Republican Adam Roosevelt with 80.3 percent of the vote. Del. Marcus Simon retained his seat in the 53rd district with 74.3 percent of the vote, beating Mike Casey, an independent.

The $315 million school bond on the Fairfax County ballot passed with 73.4 percent of the vote.

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