The 2016 elections are more than five months away, but the 2017 state races started long ago.
This is Virginia. Election season is an interminable phenomenon, thanks to the state's unusual off-year elections filling holes between even-year local and federal races. Three statewide government slots will be on the ballot next year: governor, lieutenant governor and attorney general. Democrats are largely falling into line behind unopposed front-runners for two of those jobs, though there's bound to be some jostling in their primary for lieutenant governor. Republicans have a more robust slate set to duke it out.
Of all the words spoken by all the people at the annual 8th District Republican Committee convention, the main takeaway boiled down to this: Without a unified GOP, the White House is going to stay in Democratic hands.
“It’s going to take everybody to row in the same direction,” said state Sen. Bryce Reeves (R-Fredericksburg), one of the politicians already angling for statewide posts in 2017 who attended the May 7 convention, which drew nearly 450 delegates to Kenmore Middle School in Arlington.
Democrat Justin Fairfax, a former federal prosecutor and 2013 attorney general candidate, is running for lieutenant governor.
He is the first Democrat to officially jump into the statewide contest, while Republicans already have a crowded field including Sen. Bryce Reeves (R-Spotsylvania), Sen. Jill Vogel (R-Fauquier) and Del. Glenn Davis (R-Virginia Beach).
The firebrand who electrified the Republican convention three years ago, winning the party’s nomination as its candidate for lieutenant governor, Chesapeake pastor E.W. Jackson, threw his support at this weekend’s gathering to state Sen. Jill Vogel, R-Upperville, who is seeking the office in 2017.
Glenn Davis bought a recreational vehicle, but not for camping.
The Republican state delegate from Virginia Beach is using the 27-foot Winnebago in his campaign for lieutenant governor. The RV, with its cozy, yellow seats, is a talker. His wife Chelle dubbed it “Mellow Yellow.”
Virginia state Sen. Bryce E. Reeves has more than $290,000 on hand for his 2017 campaign for lieutenant governor, the Spotsylvania Republican announced Thursday, one day ahead of a state fundraising deadline.
State Sen. Jill Holtzman Vogel (R-Upperville) says she’s running for lieutenant governor in 2017.
Vogel made the announcement over the weekend.