Virginia Democrats vying to be face of Trump resistance

Posted June 14, 2017

Northam was backed by every statewide Democratic officeholder, while Perriello drew the support of Democratic progressives, including U.S. Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.

The race caused an election night stir as Gillespie came within just a few thousand votes, a less than 1 percent margin of topping the well-known incumbent.

The June 20 Georgia special congressional election will offer an early reading on the Democrats' ability to rebound from 2016 and make 2018 gains.

Northam, a usually low-key pediatric neurologist, won running as a pragmatist with state's Democratic establishment's firm support. He has also vowed to fight Trump, but with pledges to work with state Republican lawmakers on issues like a tax overhaul.

As Virginia voters go to the polls today to pick their nominees for governor, President Trump has cast a shadow over both parties' primaries in very different ways.

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If Perriello is injecting national politics into the race, Northam, a physician, represents a local voice. But Northam - who spent eight years serving under Gov. Terry McAuliffe - retained a lot of good will with the party's rank and file.

"All I am going to do is put forward ideas that will get Virginia going again", Gillespie said.

Perriello joined the race as resistance to the Trump agenda began to boom, and promised on the stump to make Virginia a bulwark against it. As a Republican candidate, many in-party voters and opponents are questioning why he has never quite fully addressed Trump on his campaign trail.

Meanwhile, if Perriello or Northam win, it will be almost impossible for Virginia's voters to elect a Democratic House of Delegates - even if a majority of those voters cast a ballot for a Democratic candidate. While he may not have the high-profile endorsements of Northam, experts say he's attracting the same group that aligned with Sen.

The attorney general race will have Democrat Mark Herring, the incumbent, facing Republican John Adams in the November 7 election.

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He also cited testimony from first responders of Castile's gun falling out of his pocket as he was loaded onto a backboard. Closing arguments were expected at midmorning in the trial of police Officer Jeronimo (yeh-RON'-ih-moh) Yanez.

Associated Press reporters Ben Finley in Norfolk and Alanna Durkin Richer in Richmond contributed to this report.

GOP candidates for lieutenant governor are Jill Holzmann Vogel of Fauquier and Bryce E. Reeves of Spotsylvania, both state senators, and Del. As the mother of three young children, I know that if Tom is elected governor, he will have the integrity and courage to live up to his promise of making Virginia a more inclusive state that provides children of all races and backgrounds with equal opportunity to succeed in life.

On the Republican side, former George W. Bush aide Gillespie campaigned off the goodwill he established with Republicans after his narrow loss to Democratic Sen. Herring, the incumbent attorney general, is running unopposed for his party's nomination.

So far his effort seems to be paying off in his battle to defeat the much more moderate Democratic lieutenant governor Ralph Northam. The Democrats have three candidates for Lieutenant Governor but only Justin Fairfax and Susan Platt have a chance of joining Northam on the November 7th ballot.

Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam is on track to win the Democratic nomination for Virginia governor in the primary election Tuesday evening, CNN has projected. He was special adviser to the prosecution of the Special Court for Sierra Leone and served as special envoy for the Great Lakes Region of Africa and the Democratic Republic of Congo under the Obama administration. Polls leading up to Tuesday found the race to be neck and neck, while Northam ended up outspending Perriello.

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