By Progress Virginia
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Election Day is Tuesday, November 5th
The Progressive Voters Guide compiles the information that allows you to make informed decisions about the races on your ballot, based on your values. Vote in every race on your ballot! It's our right and our responsibility. Please share this guide with your friends and family.
Depending on where you live, you may have one of the below State Senate races on your ballot.
Incumbent Senator Lionell Spruill is a lifelong Virginian and Democrat. He was born in Norfolk and received an Honorary Doctorate from Norfolk University. Senator Spruill was a member of several civic leagues in the state, which led to his appointment as Chairman of the Chesapeake City Council in 1988. He was elected to the Virginia House of Delegates in 1994 and the state Senate in 2016.
Senator Spruill is pro-choice and has voted against personhood bills and mandatory ultrasounds before abortion. He supports legislation like the Virginia Energy Plan that would have put a 15 year pause on offshore oil drilling and encouraged clean energy options. Senator Spruill voted to expand Medicaid in Virginia and supports raising wages for Virginia families. He passed legislation to close Jim Crow loopholes in Virginia law that exempted some professions from the state minimum wage.
His opponent, Jeff Staples, is running as an independent. Staples supports ratifying the Equal Rights Amendment and expanding healthcare access. He does not have a clear stance on immigration, reproductive health, economic opportunity, or other progressive issues.
Senator Spruill is the progressive choice in this race.
There is minimal information available about Democratic candidate Rebecca Raveson. She has no website, Twitter account, or campaign Facebook page.
Incumbent Republican John Cosgrove has been consistently anti-choice. He voted against funding for reproductive healthcare and to require unnecessary ultrasounds before abortion. He is against our immigrant communities, having voted against the formation of sanctuary cities, and supports discrimination on the basis of religion. He opposed the ratification of the ERA and is staunchly against gun violence prevention.
Originally from Portsmouth, incumbent Senator Louise Lucas received both her undergraduate and graduate degrees from Norfolk State University. She is a Deaconess at the New Mount Olivet Baptist Church. Lucas was elected to the state Senate in 1991.
Lucas has co-sponsored legislation to prohitbit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. She has supported Medicaid expansion and voted to raise the minimum wage in Virginia. Lucas is a champion for voting rights and has introduced constitutional amendments to guarantee the right to vote in Virginia and reform the Commonwealth’s redistricting process. She is reliably pro-choice and has introduced legislation to expand background checks for gun purchases in Virignia.
She is running unopposed and is the progressive choice for this race.
House of Delegates
Depending on where you live, you may have one of the below House of Delegate races on your ballot.
Incumbent Delegate Kelly Convirs-Fowler (D) was elected to the House of Delegates in 2017. As Delegate, she has advocated for gun violence prevention, affordable healthcare access, and increased pay for teachers and investments in public schools. She is outspoken in her support for ratifying the Equal Rights Amendment. Delegate Convirs-Fowler is pro-choice and believes that everyone should be able to access abortion, regardless of zip code, race, or income level. She also voted for Medicaid expansion. Delegate Convirs-Fowler supports green jobs and renewable energy and has pledged not to take money from Dominion Energy. She lives in Virginia Beach with her husband and two children.
Her opponent, Republican Shannon Kane, is currently a member of the Virginia Beach City Council. She is anti-immigrant, anti-choice, and anti-gun violence prevention. She supports right-to-work laws that benefit corporations at the expense of working people.
Delegate Convirs-Fowler is the more progressive choice in this race.
Clint Jenkins is an Army veteran, small business owner, and community leader who was raised in the 76th district. He has been deeply involved in the community for years, volunteering for various local organizations and churches and taking an active role with the Democratic Party. He currently serves as the Chair of the 3rd Congressional District for the Democratic Party of Virginia.
Jenkins has been outspoken about gun violence prevention in the Commonwealth and vows to make Virginia safer for everyone. He has also voiced his intentions to fight for clean energy alternatives once he is elected.
Incumbent Republican Delegate Chris Jones was elected to the Virginia House of Delegates in 1997. Delegate Jones has shown that he does not support sensible gun violence prevention bills and proposed an unfair redistricting plan that courts ruled discriminated against Black voters. He has voted against reproductive rights during his time in the House.
Clint Jenkins is the more progressive choice in this race.
Incumbent Democratic Delegate Cliff Hayes is a life-long resident of the Chesapeake area. He has been a member of the House of Delegates since 2016. He serves as the Chief Information Officer / Technology Director for the Norfolk Sheriff’s Office. Prior to being elected to the Virginia General Assembly, Delegate Hayes served as a member of the Chesapeake City Council from 2004 to 2012.
Delegate Hayes has a long record of supporting progressive issues. He is an ardent supporter of senior citizens rights, healthy alternatives for youth, public safety, technology, job creation and retention, and the city’s school system. He has sponsored bills that would increase affordable housing in the Commonwealth and has been a champion for reproductive rights.
Delegate Hayes is running uncontested and is the progressive choice in this race.
Incumbent Republican Delegate Jay Leftwich is an attorney and a partner at Basnight, Kinser, Leftwich & Nuckolls, P.C., where he has worked for 29 years.
Delegate Leftwich won election to the Virginia House of Delegates in 2013 to represent the 78th District. He supported bills that limit reproductive freedom, voted against sensible gun prevention legislation designed to make Virginia a safer place, and supported anti-immigrant bills. Delegate Leftwich is running unopposed.
We encourage you to write in a candidate of your choice, and regardless to get out and vote! Please remember that there are other races that will be on the ballot.
Democratic candidate Don Scott is a former United States Naval Officer. Scott graduated from Texas A&M University and obtained his law degree from Louisiana State University. He serves on several boards and commissions, including as the 1st Vice President of the Southeastern Employment and Training Association, as a Commissioner for the Portsmouth Economic Development Association, and a member of Future of Hampton Roads. He previously served as the chair of the National Association of Workforce Development Professionals, on the board for the California Workforce Association, and as a member and board member of 200+ Men Hampton Roads.
Scott’s campaign prioritizes economic equality, education, and criminal justice reform. He promises to defend the environment in Virginia and to protect the air, water, and open spaces. He has also voiced his support of fair redistricting in Virginia so that everyone can have an equal voice in the democratic process.
Both Republican Jim Evans and Independent Ryan Collin Benton lack a thorough campaign proposal that focuses on the critical issues impacting the Commonwealth. Evans wants to make Virginia more business friendly and supports change in Virginia’s transportation system. Benton would like to decriminalize marijuana and believes the best way to reduce crime is to promote economic development, vocational education, and support programs that keep our youth on a positive track.
Don Scott is the more progressive choice in this race.
Democratic candidate Lenard Myers began his legal career as a prosecutor but now fights for clients as a successful consumer rights lawyer throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. He is also an officer in the Virginia Defense Force, an integral component of the Virginia National Guard.
Myers is an outspoken advocate for sensible gun laws. His campaign focuses on bringing more jobs to the Commonwealth, providing accessible healthcare, prioritizing education and fighting flooding through strong environmental policies.
Republican incumbent Delegate Barry Knight was elected a member of the Virginia House of Delegates in a special election in 2009. He does not support sensible gun laws and voted to prohibit sanctuary cities in Virginia.
Lenard Myers is the more progressive choice in this race.
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