• Democrat

    Derek Kitts

  • Derek Kitts is a veteran, small business owner, and native of Southwest Virginia. Kitts was born in Roanoke, raised in Lynchburg, and currently lives in Christiansburg with his family. He owns Virginia Blue Star Printing & Consulting, a union print shop, and serves as a middle school athletics coach. He is retired from the Army after serving for 24 years, including three combat tours in Iraq and one in Afghanistan, receiving two Bronze Star medals and a Purple Heart.

    Kitts is an advocate for educational equity. He wants to better fund Virginia’s rural schools and he hopes to restore a dedicated source of funding for rural education. As delegate, he would prioritize increasing teacher pay and providing incentives for teachers to work in rural areas. He supports programs like tuition forgiveness to recruit and retrain quality educators in the district. He also supports policies enacted to support transgender students, which ensure that schools use transgender students’ chosen names, allow them to participate in sports, and let students use restrooms and locker rooms according to their gender identities.

    Kitts supports improvements to Southwest Virginia’s infrastructure, including expanding access to broadband service, which will improve the district’s educational and economic opportunities. He also supports the creation of local co-ops to provide Internet access in areas where it is most needed. Additionally, he would prioritize transportation infrastructure. He hopes to create funding for rural transportation safety in order to decrease the frequency of accidents on roads in rural VA and supports increasing revenue for roadway expansion.

    As a small business owner, Kitts supports policies to make the 7th District a destination for businesses. He supports the expansion of rural small business incubators and wants to ensure loans and grants are easily accessible for local businesses. Kitts also recognizes the critical role of workers and is a strong supporter of labor rights. The print shop he owns is unionized and he is a proud member of the UMWA Local 2274. He believes the state should repeal its right-to-work laws.

    Kitts supports policies that increase access to healthcare like the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and wants to lower the cost of prescription drugs. While he backs the Second Amendment rights, Kitts advocates for common sense measures aimed at preventing gun violence like background checks. Kitts also wants to prioritize helping Virginia families live in dignity by supporting paid family and medical leave, paid sick days, and increased funding for childcare and elder care.

    Kitts is running against Republican Marie March, a small business owner from Floyd and Trump supporter. She opposes abortion access and supports increasing police funding. She wants to deny people’s right to participate in elections by creating deliberate barriers to restrict people’s access to the ballot. She does not believe rich and wealthy corporations should have to pay their fair share in taxes.

    Due to his progressive policies on education, workers’ rights, infrastructure, and healthcare, Derek Kitts is the most progressive choice for the 7th District in Virginia.
    Last updated: 2021-09-15

    Derek Kitts

    Derek Kitts is a veteran, small business owner, and native of Southwest Virginia. Kitts was born in Roanoke, raised in Lynchburg, and currently lives in Christiansburg with his family.

    Derek Kitts

    Derek Kitts is a veteran, small business owner, and native of Southwest Virginia. Kitts was born in Roanoke, raised in Lynchburg, and currently lives in Christiansburg with his family.
  • Democratic candidate for governor, Terry McAuliffe, was the 72nd Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia from 2014 to 2018. McAuliffe was unable to seek reelection in 2017 due to a state law that bars sitting governors from serving consecutive terms. McAuliffe attended The Catholic University of America and Georgetown University Law Center. A lifelong businessman and entrepreneur, McAuliffe has lived in Fairfax County for more than 20 years with his wife, Dorothy. The couple has raised five children together.

    McAuliffe is centering his campaign on building a strong Virginia economy that works for everyone. He plans to raise the state’s minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2024, two years ahead of the current schedule. He wants to require employers to provide paid sick days along with paid family and medical leave to all workers. Because Virginia is the 10th most expensive state for childcare in the country, McAuliffe wants to assist families burdened with childcare costs by providing subsidies, funneling federal money to families, and making it easier for people to qualify for assistance.

    McAuliffe plans to invest $2 billion in Virginia’s education system every year so that teachers are paid above the national average, children have access to universal pre-K, and every student can get online. To make college more affordable to students, McAuliffe will offer more financial aid and expand on current Governor Ralph Northam’s program that makes community college free to low- and middle-income students studying in certain fields. McAuliffe also wants to boost enrollment at Historically Black Colleges and Universities by providing free tuition to students who promise to teach for five years in the state’s high-need areas.

    While serving as Governor of Virginia, McAuliffe took action to reduce carbon emissions in the state and received a $120.5 million federal grant to combat the rising sea level on Virginia’s coast. He wants Virginia to reach 100% clean energy by 2035 and make access to clean energy and transportation infrastructure more affordable by providing subsidies for solar usage and public transit construction. McAuliffe also plans to address the racial impacts of climate change by providing funding to communities hit by extreme heat and rising sea levels.

    McAuliffe pushed for Medicaid expansion during his first term and wants to increase access to affordable healthcare by supporting Virginia’s plan to create a state-run health insurance marketplace. He backs lowering prescription drug costs, reducing health insurance premiums, and creating a Medicaid buy-in option for people who make too much to qualify for the program but still can’t afford out-of-pocket costs on the marketplace. When he was governor, McAuliffe vetoed Republican legislation that would have limited abortion access. If reelected, McAuliffe plans to incorporate Roe v. Wade into Virginia’s constitution to guarantee that abortion access is protected.

    McAuliffe is running against multimillionaire Republican Glenn Youngkin, the former president of Carlyle Group, one of the world’s largest private equity firms. Youngkin wants to channel the state’s money from the American Rescue Plan (ARP) to fund private schools. Youngkin has admitted that he opposes abortion access and will work to dismantle protections for reproductive freedom in the Commonwealth. Youngkin is also against making health coverage more affordable in Virginia.

    McAuliffe is also facing a challenge from activist and educator Princess Blanding, an Independent candidate. Blanding is the sister of Marcus David-Peters, a young Black man who was killed by police in 2018. Blanding wants to hold police accountable by ending qualified immunity and shifting funding away from police departments to invest in community services. She also wants to make health coverage more affordable by creating a public healthcare system.

    Due to his record in providing leadership for the Commonwealth and his support of Virginia working families, the environment, affordable health coverage, and reproductive rights, Terry McAuliffe is the most progressive choice in this race.

    Last updated: 2021-09-15

    Terry McAuliffe

    Democratic candidate for governor, Terry McAuliffe, was the 72nd Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia from 2014 to 2018. McAuliffe was unable to seek reelection in 2017 due to a state law that bars sitting governors from serving consecutive terms.

    Terry McAuliffe

    Democratic candidate for governor, Terry McAuliffe, was the 72nd Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia from 2014 to 2018. McAuliffe was unable to seek reelection in 2017 due to a state law that bars sitting governors from serving consecutive terms.

  • The daughter of a Salvadorian and North African immigrant father and a Lebanese and Irish mother, Delegate Hala Ayala was one of the first Latina women elected to the House of Delegates, having one her first election to represent the 51st District in 2017. She worked for over 20 years as a cybersecurity specialist and is the single mother of two grown children. If chosen by voters to be the Lieutenant Governor of Virginia, Ayala will be the first woman and Afro-Latina to do so.

    Affordable access to healthcare is a central focus for Ayala. As a first-time mother, Ayala depended on Medicaid to give her son life-saving care. In 2018, Ayala voted to expand Medicaid to 400,000 Virginians. In 2020, she co-patroned legislation to cap the cost of insulin in the state. In 2021, she voted to make the cost of prescription drugs transparent and to boost Virginia’s capacity to administer the COVID-19 vaccine. She also wants to reduce Black maternal mortality and create a universal paid family and medical leave program in the Commonwealth.

    As a graduate of Prince William County schools, Ayala believes that a well-funded education system is critical to a thriving Commonwealth. In 2021, she voted to increase teachers’ salaries by 5%. She also supported the “Get Skilled, Get a Job, Give Back (G3) Fund and Program, which provides free community college to low- and middle-income students who are studying in certain fields. As lieutenant governor, Ayala will prioritize expanding access to pre-K, reducing overcrowding in classrooms, and dedicate more funding to improve school infrastructure.

    Recognizing the climate crisis as a national security threat, Ayala believes the state needs to play a bigger role in addressing the impacts of climate change. She co-patroned the Virginia Clean Economy Act in 2020, which will eliminate carbon emissions in the Commonwealth by 2050. She also wants to dedicate more funding to communities dealing firsthand with the effects of climate change, believing that solutions to the crisis must be created with racial equity in mind.

    Ayala personally understands how hard it is for families to make ends meet. Her family struggled financially when she was a child, and she worked and raised children while obtaining her degree. In 2020, Ayala voted to raise the state’s minimum wage. She supports making paid family and medical leave available to all Virginia working families. In 2021, she voted to strengthen the rights of tenants and protect them from eviction during the pandemic. She also sponsored legislation to protect workers during the pandemic by requiring employers to provide them with personal protective equipment and hazard pay.

    Ayala is running against former delegate Winsome Sears, a Republican who represented Norfolk in the House of Delegates from 2002 to 2003. Sears owns a plumbing and appliance repair store in Winchester. Sears opposes legislation that would make our communities safer from gun violence. She also supports using public money to fund private schools and wants to create deliberate barriers to voting access that make it more difficult for people to participate in our democracy.

    Due to her support of affordable health coverage, the environment, public education, and Virginia working families, Delegate Hala Ayala is the most progressive choice for lieutenant governor in Virginia.
    Last updated: 2021-09-15

    Hala Ayala

    The daughter of a Salvadorian and North African immigrant father and a Lebanese and Irish mother, Delegate Hala Ayala was one of the first Latina women elected to the House of Delegates, having one her first election to represent the 51st District in 2017.

    Hala Ayala

    The daughter of a Salvadorian and North African immigrant father and a Lebanese and Irish mother, Delegate Hala Ayala was one of the first Latina women elected to the House of Delegates, having one her first election to represent the 51st District in 2017.
  • Incumbent Attorney General Mark Herring is seeking his third term in office after having been first elected in 2013. Raised by a single mother in Loudoun County, Herring obtained a bachelor’s and a master’s degree from the University of Virginia before earning his law degree from the University of Richmond School of Law. He and his wife of 30 years, Laura, raised two children together.

    Herring has stood up for access to affordable healthcare by fighting off efforts by the Trump administration to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA). In 2021, Herring defended the ACA by joining a coalition of 21 attorneys general to argue in front of the U.S. Supreme Court against a lawsuit from the Trump administration that would have dismantled the ACA, protections for people with pre-existing conditions, and Medicaid expansion.

    Herring is a champion of reproductive rights and abortion access, and has used his office to support a person’s right to decide when and whether to become a parent. He has signed onto several lawsuits that challenge different states’ restrictive abortion laws. He issued an opinion in 2015 to strike down medically unnecessary Targeted Restrictions on Abortion Providers (TRAP) laws that shuttered women’s health centers in the Commonwealth. In 2019, he successfully filed an injunction against the Trump administration’s efforts to halt contraceptive coverage in health insurance.

    Herring has worked to keep our communities safe from gun violence by standing up to the gun lobby. In 2020, he defended two common-sense laws passed by the General Assembly aimed at preventing gun violence, the one-handgun-a-month law, and extended background checks. The same year, he also successfully defended a challenge to Virginia’s extreme risk protection law, which keeps guns out of the hands of people who pose a risk to themselves or others.

    During his time in office, Herring has fought to keep the promise of democracy real by protecting access to the ballot box. This year, he applauded the passage of the Voting Rights Act of Virginia and joined other attorneys general in urging Congress to pass safeguards that guarantee people’s rights to participate in our democracy by voting. In 2020, he ensured that voters did not face intimidation while casting their ballots in our fair and free elections. In 2016, he defended a decision from former Governor Terry McAuliffe to restore the rights of returning citizens in the Commonwealth.

    Herring is facing a challenge from Delegate Jason Miyares, a conservative Republican who wants to create deliberate barriers to voting access, undermine workers’ rights by keeping Virginia a right-to-work state, and oppose efforts to shift funding away from police budgets to community services. As a delegate, Miyares voted against raising the state’s minimum wage, expanding access to affordable healthcare to hundreds of thousands of Virginians, abolishing the death penalty, and legalizing marijuana. He also opposes abortion access.

    Due to his support of access to affordable healthcare, abortion access, gun violence prevention, and voting rights, Attorney General Mark Herring is the most progressive choice for this race.
    Last updated: 2021-09-15

    Mark Herring

    Incumbent Attorney General Mark Herring is seeking his third term in office after having been first elected in 2013.

    Mark Herring

    Incumbent Attorney General Mark Herring is seeking his third term in office after having been first elected in 2013.
  • The 7th District encompasses Montgomery, Pulaski, and Floyd counties. The district is reliably Republican. Del. Rush was elected with 67% of the vote in 2019, and has held the seat since 2012.
     

    Derek Kitts is a veteran, small business owner, and native of Southwest Virginia. Kitts was born in Roanoke, raised in Lynchburg, and currently lives in Christiansburg with his family. He owns Virginia Blue Star Printing & Consulting, a union print shop, and serves as a middle school athletics coach. He is retired from the Army after serving for 24 years, including three combat tours in Iraq and one in Afghanistan, receiving two Bronze Star medals and a Purple Heart.

    Kitts is an advocate for educational equity. He wants to better fund Virginia’s rural schools and he hopes to restore a dedicated source of funding for rural education. As delegate, he would prioritize increasing teacher pay and providing incentives for teachers to work in rural areas. He supports programs like tuition forgiveness to recruit and retrain quality educators in the district. He also supports policies enacted to support transgender students, which ensure that schools use transgender students’ chosen names, allow them to participate in sports, and let students use restrooms and locker rooms according to their gender identities.

    Kitts supports improvements to Southwest Virginia’s infrastructure, including expanding access to broadband service, which will improve the district’s educational and economic opportunities. He also supports the creation of local co-ops to provide Internet access in areas where it is most needed. Additionally, he would prioritize transportation infrastructure. He hopes to create funding for rural transportation safety in order to decrease the frequency of accidents on roads in rural VA and supports increasing revenue for roadway expansion.

    As a small business owner, Kitts supports policies to make the 7th District a destination for businesses. He supports the expansion of rural small business incubators and wants to ensure loans and grants are easily accessible for local businesses. Kitts also recognizes the critical role of workers and is a strong supporter of labor rights. The print shop he owns is unionized and he is a proud member of the UMWA Local 2274. He believes the state should repeal its right-to-work laws.

    Kitts supports policies that increase access to healthcare like the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and wants to lower the cost of prescription drugs. While he backs the Second Amendment rights, Kitts advocates for common sense measures aimed at preventing gun violence like background checks. Kitts also wants to prioritize helping Virginia families live in dignity by supporting paid family and medical leave, paid sick days, and increased funding for childcare and elder care.

    Kitts is running against Republican Marie March, a small business owner from Floyd and Trump supporter. She opposes abortion access and supports increasing police funding. She wants to deny people’s right to participate in elections by creating deliberate barriers to restrict people’s access to the ballot. She does not believe rich and wealthy corporations should have to pay their fair share in taxes.

    Due to his progressive policies on education, workers’ rights, infrastructure, and healthcare, Derek Kitts is the most progressive choice for the 7th District in Virginia.

    Derek Kitts

    Derek Kitts is a veteran, small business owner, and native of Southwest Virginia. Kitts was born in Roanoke, raised in Lynchburg, and currently lives in Christiansburg with his family.