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.
Democratic Delegate John Bell served in the U.S. Air Force for almost 26 years. He received his undergraduate degree in Business Administration and now leads a financial team in the private sector. Bell was previously a volunteer tennis coach for Freedom High School and now resides in Loudon County. Delegate Bell was elected to the House of Delegates in 2015.
Delegate Bell voted to expand Medicaid in Virginia and to increase teacher salaries. He is pro-choice and supports commonsense measures to prevent gun violence. He has sponsored legislation to prohibit discrimination against LGBTQ individuals on the job and to make solar panels more affordable to Virginia families. He has also supported redistricting reform.
Bell’s opponent, Geary Higgins, is the Republican candidate. Higgins currently serves on the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors. He is a self-proclaimed conservative and opposes reproductive rights. He also opposes gun violence prevention measures, seeing them as a threat to Second Amendment rights.
John Bell is the progressive choice in this race.
General Progressive: Progress Virginia
Environment: Virginia LCV
Democrat Ronnie Ross III is a teacher, coach, and school administrator who lives in western Loudoun County. Ross’s top priorities include taking on Dominion and other powerful corporate interests. He vows to aggressively invest in green energy and examine our water reclamation and land use policies.
Ross is passionate about improving the lives of our LGBTQ community. He promises to fight to end discrimination in public employment and housing based on sexual orientation or gender identity.
His opponent is incumbent Republican Senator Jill Vogel. Senator Vogel is an attorney whose practice focuses on partisan campaign committees and Super PACS. She has served as the Virginia state Senate since 2008. Senator Vogel sponsored a controversial bill in 2012 to require women to have a mandatory, transvaginal ultrasound before accessing an abortion. Senator Vogel also voted against allowing sanctuary cities in Virginia, which would put thousands of undocumented families at risk of being seperated and force localties to use local resources to do the job of the federal government. In 2019, she voted against raising the minimum wage in Virginia.
Ronnie Ross III is the more progressive choice because of his commitment to the environment and the LGBTQ community.
Incumbent Democratic Senator Barbara Favola is running unopposed. Prior to her election as a state Senator, she served on the Arlington County Board of Supervisors for fourteen years (1997-2011) and chaired that body three times. During her service with the county, Senator Favola was the Board's leading advocate for children, youth and families, and her contributions to the community include establishing mental health services in public schools.
Senator Favola’s priorities are women’s reproductive rights, health care access, K-12 education funding, workforce training, safety net programs, helping foster children, preventing domestic violence and sensible environmental policies. Favola sponsored numerous progressive bills including one requiring universities to create memorandums of understanding with local sexual assault crisis centers and to provide survivors with access to other community resources. She has also sponsored a Bar Bystander Bill encouraging bartenders and others who serve or sell spirits in an ABC licensed or permitted establishments to undergo training to help prevent risky situations from becoming sexual assaults. Lastly, she has been a leader on making higher education more accessible and affordable.
Senator Favola is the progressive choice.
Senator Jennifer Boysko and her husband, Glenn, have raised their two daughters in historic downtown Herndon, where they have lived since 1996. Senator Boysko has volunteered with numerous organizations in her community including serving on the board of NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia. She was first elected to the House of Delegates in 2016 and won a special election to the state Senate in 2019.
Senator Boysko supported legislation to establish hate crime protections for individuals targeted for violence because of their sexual orientation or gender identity and has voiced opposition to conversion therapy. She has been a champion for immigrant families, carrying legislation to provide in-state tuition to residents regardless of immigration status and establish driving privilege cards so families can safely get to school, work, and worship. She has also prioritized protecting and expanding access to reproductive rights and supporting families through establishing paid family and medical leave.
Her conservative opponent, Republican Suzanne Fox, is anti-choice. Little is known about her stance on immigration, gun safety, and issues impacting members of the LGBT community. Fox has served on the Leesburg Town Council since 2014.
Senator Boysko the progressive choice in 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 Democratic Delegate Wendy Gooditis was elected in 2017. Health care access is an important issue for Delegate Gooditis because she lost her brother to a mental illness after he was denied Medicaid coverage. That experience motivated Gooditis’s vote to expand Virginia’s Medicaid program to 400,000 more Virginians. She also supports investments in renewable energy and clean air and water. She wants to increase teacher pay and ensure that Virginia public schools are the best they can be. She also supports fair redistricting reform so that everyone’s voice can be heard in our elections.
Her opponent, Republican Randy Minchew, was the Delegate for this district from 2012 to 2017. While a member of the House of Delegates, Minchew voted for bills that would make voting harder for some people by requiring a state issued photo ID. He also voted to defund Planned Parenthood and to require an ultrasound before a person can receive abortion care. He voted to repeal the one-gun-a-month law and is against gun violence prevention.
Delegate Wendy Gooditis is the more progressive choice because of her support for health care access and clean energy.
Incumbent Democratic Delegate David Reid supports gun violence prevention measures, is pro-choice, and wants to ensure the safety of our senior citizens. He supports further expanding Medicaid to more people to ensure that all Virginians have the opportunity for healthcare. Reid wants to reclaim more of our taxpayer money and invest it into education, transportation, and public safety. He believes in limited non-renewable energy, as well as holding companies accountable that pollute our air and water.
Delegate Reid is running unopposed, making him the progressive choice for the 32nd District.
Democratic candidate Mavis Taintor was the founder and Co-CEO of Callidus Capital Management. She and her husband now own and run a horse farm together. She lost her son to addiction and depression after our health care system failed him. Taintor felt called to run for office to ensure other parents don’t have to go through the same tragedy.
Affordable and accessible health care for everyone is at the center of Taintor’s campaign. She supports increased funding for mental health services and eliminating work requirements for Medicaid. She is pro-choice, supporting abortion access and funding for women’s health services. Taintor is also a strong supporter of Virginia’s workers and supports increasing the minimum wage to $15 and repealing the so-called right-to-work laws that prevent people from joining unions. As Delegate, Taintor would support equality for everyone and would vote to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment. She would also vote to prevent employment discrimination for LGBTQ Virginians.
Incumbent Republican Delegate Dave LaRock was elected to the House of Delegates in 2013. He is strongly anti-choice and sponsored a bill that would require parents to opt-in their children for sex education in public schools. He has an A rating from the NRA and opposes common sense gun violence prevention legislation. Delegate LaRock opposed Medicaid expansion, which allowed an additional 300,000 Virginians to access affordable health care.
Mavis Taintor is the progressive choice for the 34th District because of her support of reproductive rights, Medicaid expansion, and increasing the minimum wage.
Incumbent Democratic Delegate Kathleen Murphy has been a member of the House of Delegates since 2015. She is a member of the House Finance, Privileges and Elections, and Transportation Committees. Murphy is the mother of four children and two step-children. She and her husband, Bill Sudow, are long-time McLean residents. When the House of Delegates is not in session, Murphy serves as President of Johnson, Murphy, and Associates, a consulting firm. Before becoming a member of the House of Delegates, Murphy served as senior staff to Congressman Charlie Wilson, and she was once a co-writer and producer for Nickelodeon Television. She graduated magna cum laude from American University .
Delegate Murphy is a strong advocate for progressive values. She supports abortion access, believing that people should make decisions for themselves. Delegate Murphy is also a strong advocate for gun violence prevention. She was personally impacted by the issue when her brother was shot and killed by two gunmen. As a Northern Virginia resident, Delegate Murphy wants to come up with transportation solutions but does not support adding tolls to I-66. Delegate Murphy supports equitable education, including funding for pre-K programs and freezing tuition hikes at Virginia’s public colleges and universities. She also supports equal pay for women.
Running against Delegate Murphy is Republican Gary Pan. He is a business owner who supports reducing government regulations that keep us safe and healthy. Pan has chosen to remain silent on important issues like abortion access, gun violence prevention, paid family leave, and raising the minimum wage.
Delegate Murphy is the more progressive choice in this race because of her support of abortion access and increasing teacher pay.
Incumbent Democratic Delegate Karrie Delaney is dedicated to bringing innovative economic growth, world-class education, and healthcare for all to Northern Virginia. She is a mother of two and former Communications Director for Shared Hope International, a non-profit working to end sex trafficking.
A Delegate since 2017, Delaney has been fighting for Fairfax as an advocate for women and children. She sponsored a bill that would invalidate settlement agreements and NDA clauses when a sexual harassment victim is not represented by counsel.
Delegate Delaney is running unopposed and is the progressive choice for this seat.
Incumbent Democratic Delegate Ibraheem Samirah was born in Chicago. He’s a second-generation Palestinian-American whose parents were refugees. On February 20, 2019, he became the second Muslim elected to the Virginia General Assembly.
Delegate Samirah’s priorities are healthcare, transportation, education, and the environment.He believes that healthcare should and must be a right for all Americans. He voted to expand programs in the Virginia Department of Health and fights to preserve Medicaid expansion. He is also a strong advocate of expanding access to public transportation and decreasing the cost of tolls in the busy I-66 corridor. He defends school funding and advocates for universal pre-k. One of his top priorities is preserving the environment and Virginia’s natural beauty. Delegate Samirah promises to fight climate change, expand renewable energy sources, and vows to never accept money from Dominion Energy.
Delegate Samirah is running unopposed and is the progressive choice in this race.
Democratic candidate Suhas Subramanyam served on Capitol Hill as a health care and veteran’s policy aide. In that role, he worked to draft legislation to increase job opportunities and funding for veterans. He later earned his law degree with honors at Northwestern University School of Law, volunteering at the Center for Wrongful Convictions. Subramanyam also clerked for the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, where he helped re-introduce the DREAM Act and worked on criminal justice reforms.
Subramanyam’s platform includes increased healthcare access, increased education funding, and common sense gun reform. He also wants to pass equality legislation such as anti-housing discrimination, anti-hate crime, and equal rights laws.
His Republican opponent, Bill Drennan, is an Air Force combat veteran and former presidential military aide to President Ronald Reagan. Drennan is campaigning on his desire to limit reproductive rights in Virginia. He also opposes common sense gun violence prevention legislation and raising the minimum wage.
Subramanyam is the more progressive choice in this race.
Chairwoman Phyllis Randall is a retired mental health therapist. She worked with incarcerated people who have substance abuse issues in a local adult detention center. She and her husband have lived in Loudoun since 2003, and they are the parents of two sons.
Randall was elected Chair at Large of the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors in November 2015. She was the first woman of color in Virginia’s history to be elected chair of a County Board. As Loudoun’s Chair at Large, she represents Loudoun on various regional, state and national bodies including the National Association of Counties Health and Human Resources Committee. Chairwoman Randall has been outspoken against the Trump administration and has advocated for fair voting rights and universal kindergarten. Randall has also increased teacher pay and implemented green energy policies. She is also passionate about finding solutions to the opioid crisis and helped to reestablish a county Drug Court, prioritizing treatment over incarceration.
Former Republican Party of Virginia Chairman John Whitbeck is an attorney and proud Trump supporter. Ashburn attorney Robert Ohneiser, an independent candidate says he is running on the platform on lowering property tax rates, addressing traffic issues on Route 9 and Route 15 and improving coordination with Fairfax County to find lower costs for commodity materials needed by both counties.
Because of her commitment to racial equity, environment preservation, and ending the opioid crisis, Randall is the more progressive choice in this race.
Buta Biberaj was raised in New York City. She attended Fordham University, and then transferred to George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia. She graduated from George Mason University with a B.S. in Education in 1987 and received her J.D. from the George Mason University School of Law in 1993.
Biberaj has been a lawyer in Loudoun for 25 years and a substitute judge for more than 11 years. She cares deeply about reforming the criminal justice system to prioritize prevention and reformative justice. She wants to tackle criminal justice disparities and seek justice for victims, reductions in racial disparities, and offer treatment, education, and job training to low-level offenders rather than jail time. She vows to work collaboratively with police so that our resources are directed to the most serious crimes against people, including sexual assault, human trafficking, and homicide.
Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney and Republican-endorsed candidate, Nicole Wittmann, has been a prosecutor for 25 years. Her platform does not discuss many progressive issues important to us such as mandatory minimums or prevention programs for at-risk populations.
Buta Biberaj has been endorsed by the Loudoun County Democratic Committee and is the more progressive choice because of her commitment to progressive criminal justice policies like prevention programs for at-risk populations and policies that decrease racial disparities within our justice system.
Kannan Srinivasan is the Democratic candidate for county Treasurer. He lives in Potomac Falls, Virginia with his wife, Jayashree. They both are active in NAACP Loudoun’s Education Committee. Kannan and his family have been residents of Northern Virginia since the mid 90s. He attended Old Dominion University (ODU) to earn his masters degree in Accounting where he specialized in cost/performance management for service industries and did research on government financial management.
He had a successful public accounting practice helping companies of all sizes improve operational efficiencies and tax functions. He worked for a global insurance leader in finance and performance management. Kannan now leads a team of operations professionals. His platform focuses on bringing transparency, innovation and accountability into the Treasurer's office.
H. Roger Zurn, Jr., a Republican, has been Treasurer for 24 years. Zurn's public service dates to 1990 when he was elected to the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors to represent the Sterling District. Zurn was raised in Baltimore, Md., and is a graduate of the University of Maryland with a degree in bank management. He worked at several local banks until he reached the level of senior lending officer. He left banking to start a business with his wife before entering local politics.
Kannan Srinivasan is the more progressive choice because of his commitment to bringing transparency into the Treasurer’s office.
Justin Hannah is an Army reserve intelligence officer Captain.Hannah lives in Aldie with his partner and their two children. He served in the National Guard while receiving degrees from Valley Forge Military Academy & College and The American University School of Public Affairs.
Hannah has called for better enforcement of current gun laws and for the passage of more effective gun laws. He wants to keep the influence of special interests, including the National Rifle Association, out of the Sheriff’s Office and its decision making process.
Hannah wants to replace Loudoun’s failed drug education programs and replace the ineffective D.A.R.E. program with one of the many more successful variants that are used across the country. He vows to implement extensive job training, GED, and higher education programs that will allow inmates to start a new life when they are released. Hannah also plans to minimize cooperation with ICE while maximizing public safety.
Hannah will face incumbent Sheriff Mike Chapman in November's general election. Chapman is seeking his third term as the county's chief law enforcement officer. He has faced criticism for his role in advancing the county’s cooperation with Immigration and Customs Enforcement to detain and deport immigrants.
Hannah is the more progressive choice.
Kenya Savage is a mother, community advocate, and Booz Allen Hamilton national security professional who graduated from Morgan State University. She has sat on county boards, commissions, and organizations across Loudoun. Her priorities are accountability, choice, training, and safety. She believes the district should promote annual mandatory implicit bias training to promote inclusiveness for all LCPS personnel and School Board members. She also advocates for diversity in staff recruitment and the implementation of a culturally-responsive curriculum.
Denise Corbo is a 33 year Loudoun County resident, 25-year LCPS teacher, and mother of 3 LCPS graduates. She received a master’s degree in elementary education from Marymount University. Corbo is president and founder of StoryBook Treasures, a nonprofit organization that aims to increase a love of literacy in children.
Corbo wants the county to bring more data and transparency to decision making. She also wants to hire diverse employees, require diversity training, and implement a culturally-responsive curriculum. Corbo has been endorsed by the Loudoun County Democratic Committee.
Julie Sisson has lived in Virginia for 30 years and has two children. She is concerned about the school budget and has pledged to oppose increased funding. She has been endorsed by the Loudoun GOP.
Kenya Savage and Denise Corbo are both progressive choices because of their commitment to tackling inequality and their efforts to diversity staff recruitment.
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