State Government

AP Photo/Steve Helber

A quick round-up of election results for Virginia’s state senate: Republicans maintained control. No incumbents lost. Any seat that was held by a Republican is still held by a Republican. And the same goes for Democrats. Nothing flipped. And, that’s despite big money being spent.

It’s a fairly straightforward calculation: $45 million dollars in campaigning plus low voter turnout equals zero change. Quentin Kidd is a political scientist at Christopher Newport University.

Despite major efforts by Democratic Governor Terry McAuliffe and outside groups, such as former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety, no party-shifting happened in yesterday’s election. Republicans still maintain control of the House and narrow control of the Senate. This means the ongoing Medicaid expansion fight will likely die in the upcoming General Assembly session.

Voters are deciding which party will run the Virginia Senate for the next four years. Republicans hold a 21-to-19 majority but Democrats can take control by gaining one seat since they have the tiebreaking  vote in the person of Lieutenant Governor Ralph Northam.

With Republicans likely to maintain a large majority in the House of Delegates and Democrat Terry McAuliffe sitting in the governor's mansion today's outcome in the senate will have enormous implications for the direction of state government in the immediate future.

Absentee Voters

Nov 2, 2015

State and local election officials are hoping to see a lot of people at the polls Tuesday.  But must experts believe only about 23-to-29 percent of those registered will vote will show up.

Some have already voted…they cast absentee ballots.

The State Board of Elections says it’s received more than 55,000 absentee ballots so far. That’s close to the same number that came in four years ago, in the last off-year election like this.

 As we’ve been hearing this week -- Tuesday’s state-wide elections will determine Virginia’s lawmakers for the next two years. Also at stake: which party will control Virginia’s State Senate.  But just what is the effect of who controls the state senate? 

Virginia’s Governor is a Democrat, and it’s legislature is controlled completely by Republicans. But, if Democrats win just one extra seat on Tuesday.. that could change.

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