By OLIVIA BRIDGES
The Virginia State House of Delegates election occurred on Tuesday, Nov. 7. The Republican candidates won districts 28 and 88 while the Democratic candidates won the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Attorney General races.
State House district 28 represents on-campus University of Mary Washington, while district 88 represents off-campus students.
Republican Bob Thomas won district 28 against Democrat Joshua Cole by less than a margin of 100 votes. According to vpap.org, Thomas had a total of 11,833 votes. Cole had approximately 11,749, losing by a difference of .72 percent. However, due to the fact Thomas won by 82 votes, Cole requested a recount of the provisional ballots.
According to the New York Times, in district 88, Republican Mark Cole beat the Democratic nominee Steve Aycock with 53 percent of the votes per the election results article. Aycock won 37 percent of the votes with a margin of 16 percent.
Democrat Ralph Northam was elected Governor of Virginia and Justin Fairfax as Lieutenant Governor. In Fredericksburg, 4,550 people voted for Northam and Fairfax, while their opponents won 2,565 of the votes. Another Virginia Democrat, Mark Herring, won the position of Virginia Attorney General. He won 4,578 votes out of 7,126 votes, according to the New York Times.
The students in the two political groups on campus, the College Republicans and Young Democrats, were all involved in the election. Both groups advocated for their respective candidates.
The UMW College Republicans supported Ed Gillespie because they feel he represented their personal views and is looking out for the safety and economic prosperity of Virginians. The club canvassed door to door and they phone banked. Phone banking is when volunteers make calls from a list to inform the general public about the candidate.
“We are very happy the Thomas won,” said sophomore John Flood, the outreach chair of the UMW College Republicans. “We would like to thank Ed Gillespie, Jill Vogel, and John Adams for the hard work they put in as well as all those that tried to turn Virginia red.”
“We congratulate Northam on his victory,” said Flood on behalf on the UMW College Republicans. “We are wary of the fight republicans will have in 2018 elections.”
UMW Young Democrats worked to support their prefered candidate as well. Every Wednesday, the Young Democrats phone banked for two hours and canvassed Saturdays and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. in three-hour shifts. They also provided rides to the polling locations.
“Within just our club we gave 116 people rides leaving from the belltower. With the addition of drivers from LAC and CRS we had a total of 144 students driven to their polling location on election day,” the UMW Young Democrats said through email in their official statement.
They also supported the democratic candidates by putting up signs at local polling places.
“The Young Democrats during the election support Northam, Fairfax, and Herring for the statewide positions of Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Attorney General respectively,” the club said.
The UMW Young Democrats supported Josh Cole and Aycock as well.
“We are incredibly thankful for the hard work our members put into the election and are thankful that Virginia is blue again,” the UMW Young Democrats noted in their official statement.
The election on Nov. 7 resulted in the democrats flipping at least a dozen seats and involved several firsts for United States politics. Among those firsts is Danica Roem, an openly transgender women. Roem was elected into the Virginia House of Delegates district 13.
UMW junior Ronan Goforth is from district 13 and voted for Roem. Goforth recognizes that there are various reasons why people voted for Roem.
“So, I know a lot of people voted for Danica because she is a trans woman and that’s really important to people,” said Goforth.
Goforth was not one of the voters who supported Roem because she is a transgender woman. Goforth voted for Roem because she was a reporter in the area and her policies would benefit the district.
“She wants to fix route 28 and actually work to combat the heavy traffic that we have there,” said Goforth.
Roem’s plan is to fix the traffic in district 13 by taking out stop lights and adding in an overpass.
“She has good legislative ideas for the area, so I voted for her because of a combination of her policy platform,” said Goforth.