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.
Democrat Amy Laufer is a former middle school teacher. She taught in Jamaica as a Peace Corps volunteer before teaching at Louisa Middle School and Tandem Friends School in Charlottesville. Laufer has served on the Charlottesville City School Board and is the founder of Virginia’s List, an organization that supports Democratic women running for office.
Laufer’s platform prioritizes education, including raising teacher pay and investing in pre-k classes. She also supports criminal justice reform and tackling the problem of mass incarceration. Laufer supports Medicaid expansion, would vote to repeal the punitive work requirements, and will continue to fight to ensure everyone has access to quality, affordable health care. She also supports the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30% by 2030.
Incumbent Republican Senator Bryce Reeves voted against Medicaid expansion and against raising the minimum wage in Virginia. He is anti-choice and opposes commonsense gun violence prevention measures. Senator Reeves also voted against legislation that would prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity in housing and public employment.
Laufer is the progressive choice in this race.
Incumbent Senator Creigh Deeds is a lawyer in private practice who lives in Bath County with his wife, Siobhan. Senator Deeds has served as a member of the Senate of Virginia representing the 25th district since 2001.
Senator Deeds is outspoken on mental health issues. His son committed suicide a short time after a mental health facility denied him a bed due to lack of space. Senator Deeds has used this tragic event to fight for mental health reform in the Commonwealth. He was the chief patron of Virginia’s “Megan’s Law” to protect children from sexual predators and also introduced legislation establishing the Amber Alert Program in Virginia. He has led the fight to conserve open spaces and our rural landscapes, while promoting efforts to plan for growth and protect our clean air, clean water, and natural environment. The Nature Conservancy and the Preservation Alliance of Virginia awarded him special recognition for his legislation to reinvigorate the Virginia Land Conservation Foundation.
Elliott Harding is running as an independent candidate against Senator Deeds. Harding is the former chair of the Albemarle County Republican Committee. In 2015, he worked on Robert Tracci's campaign for Commonwealth's Attorney in Albemarle. Harding served as an attorney for The Monument Fund in their lawsuit against Charlottesville City Council for voting to remove Confederate statues in Charlottesville.
House of Delegates
Depending on where you live, you may have one of the below House of Delegate races on your ballot.
Democratic candidate Jennifer Kitchen was born and raised in Augusta County and lives there with her husband and two school-age children. She has been very involved in the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and has served as the Shenandoah Valley’s ticket chair for many years.
Kitchen believes in increasing access to education by increasing teacher salaries and school funding. She supports renewable energy and opposes plans for natural gas pipeline construction through Virginia. Kitchen also supports ratifying the Equal Rights Amendment and believes that everyone should have access to broadband and job opportunities.
The 25th District is an open seat and Kitchen has two opponents. Republican Chris Runion is a small business owner from Rockingham. Runion is openly anti-choice and opposes gun violence prevention.
The other candidate is Independent Janice Allen, whose platform when she ran for Congress back in 2008 showed that she is anti-choice, opposes gun violence prevention legislation and clean energy initiatives. She also voiced anti-immigrant opinions by sharing that she supports closing the U.S./ Mexico border. Allen also opposed the Affordable Care Act.
Because of her support for renewable energy, equal rights, and broadband access, Jennifer Kitchen is the more progressive choice in this race.
Democratic candidate Sally Hudson is a teacher, economist, and community organizer. She is currently an assistant professor at the University of Virginia.
She vows to champion innovative, progressive policies as Delegate. Hudson would vote to raise teacher pay, support a public health insurance option so that everyone can see a doctor when they need to, and join the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative to combat climate change.
She has also discussed the need for a modern Voting Rights Act. She supports automatic registration, early voting, independent redistricting reform, campaign finance reform, and a host of other electoral upgrades that hold politicians accountable to the people they serve.
Hudson is running unopposed and is the progressive choice in this race.
Democratic candidate Dr. Elizabeth Alcorn has been a dentist, small business owner, healthcare provider, and volunteer in the Commonwealth for over 30 years. Dr. Alcorn is committed to ensuring everyone has access to quality, affordable health care. She aims to increase state funding for public schools and increase teacher pay. She would also vote to bring fast, quality, affordable internet to all areas of Virginia.
Her opponent is incumbent Republican Delegate Rob Bell. Bell was elected in 2001. Delegate Bell is staunchly anti-choice, and he even voted in favor of a bill requiring all women to undergo a transvaginal ultrasound prior to having an abortion in 2012. He is also against increasing the minimum wage and did not support Medicaid expansion.
Dr. Alcorn is the more progressive choice in this race.
Democratic candidate Tim Hickey is an educator, husband, and father running to represent the people of Virginia's 59th District. Providing quality education for children from Pre-K to college and supporting vocational education for the jobs of the future is a major component of his campaign. Hickey would vote to expand access to quality, affordable health care and increase the minimum wage. He also wants to expand broadband internet to every corner of the district.
Hickey is running against incumbent Republican Delegate Matt Fariss, who was elected in 2011. He is a conservative who opposes abortion access and refuses to support bills to improve the lives of LGBTQ Virginians. Fariss also opposes commonsense gun violence prevention reforms like universal background checks. Fariss voted against expanding Medicaid in Virginia to 400,000 low income individuals.
Tim Hickey is the more progressive choice in this race.
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