Virginia’s primary is in full swing as voters head to the polls they have found both sides of the ballots packed with candidates vying for the governor, lieutenant governor and some General Assembly seats.
On the Republican side, Ed Gillespie is considered the frontrunner.
“It would be a big upset if any other candidate won,” said political analyst Dr. Bob Holsworth.
Gillespie previously ran a very strong campaign against U.S. Senator Mark Warner, and almost unseated him in 2014.
Sen. Frank Wagner has experienced a hard time getting traction outside of Virginia Beach.
Prince William County Chairman Corey A. Stewart, the former state chair for Donald Trump’s campaign who was fired, has run an “odd” campaign, according to Holsworth. Stewart has been very vocal in his defense of Confederate monuments and symbols, and said he is very “proudly politically incorrect.”
Experts say turnout will be a major factor in how these races swing. Sometimes turnout in an election year is five or six percent, very rarely any more than 10 or 12 percent.
“That’s why it is so hard to predict these races because we really don’t know who is going to turn out,” Holsworth said.
On the Democratic side, Democratic Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam has establishment support, with endorsements from state senators, the governor, and legislative Black Caucus.
“If they can turn out the voters, Perriello will have an uphill climb,” Holsworth said. “Tom Perriello is running as the Bernie Sanders progressive candidate.”
Tom Perriello entered the race late but has delivered a strong social media campaign. He has key endorsements from former Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders and the staff of former President Barack Obama, in addition to the chairman of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.
“It might have some [effect],” Holsworth said of the out of state support. “Because there are a lot of progressives who are really anti-Trump, who love Bernie Sanders. He may be the most popular Democrat in America right now…”
Perriello’s appeal to college students could be mired by the issue that many of them registered on campus and school is out.
“We are going to have to see if Tom Perriello can come from behind, and whether that progressive momentum that we are seeing across the Democratic party nationally will manifest itself in Virginia on Tuesday,” Holsworth said.
2017 JUNE DEMOCRATIC PRIMARY, GOVERNOR
2017 JUNE DEMOCRATIC, LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR
- Justin Fairfax
- Gene Rossi
- Susan Platt
2017 JUNE REPUBLICAN PRIMARY, GOVERNOR
2017 JUNE REPUBLICAN PRIMARY, LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR
- Bryce E. Reeves
- Glenn R. Davis, Jr
- Jill H. Vogel
2017 JUNE REPUBLICAN PRIMARY MEMBER HOUSE OF DELEGATES
Fredericksburg City, Stafford County
- Paul Milde, III
- Susan Stimpson
- Robert Michael Thomas Jr.
Caroline County, Spotsylvania County
- Robert D. “Bobby” Orrock
- Nick G. Ignacio