Following the special election in the 33rd Senate District last week to replace Congresswoman Jennifer Wexton (VA-10), which was won by then-Delegate Jennifer Boysko (D-Fairfax), the House of Delegates is primed for the first election of 2019, next month. Voters in the 86th House District, in portions of the counties of Loudoun and Fairfax in Northern Virginia, will select a new representative on February 19 after Speaker of the House Kirk Cox (R-Colonial Heights) called for a special election.
The Democratic Party of Virginia announced on December 12 that the 86th House District’s nominating caucus would have proceedings scheduled for January 12 should Boysko win the election.
The Fairfax Times reports that although no Republican candidates have announced a run for the heavily liberal-leaning district as of yet, four Democratic candidates have stepped forward to claim the nomination.
Currently, Kofi Annan, president of the Fairfax County NAACP; Michael O’Reilly, former mayor of Herndon; Ibraheem Samirah, an area dentist; and Chad Thompson, a Democratic activist and strategist have announced their candidacies for the seat.
Republicans currently have a 51-48 edge in the House of Delegates during the 45-day session in Richmond set to adjourn on February 23.
After former Republican Delegate Tom Rust decided not to run for re-election in the 86th House District in 2015, Boysko won the seat by a margin of 12 percentage points, winning by a 2-to-1 margin in the 2017 statewide “blue wave.”
As all 140 seats in both houses of the Virginia legislature will be up for re-election this November, Republicans will look to hold on to a razor-thin majority in a state with an all-Democratic executive branch. Furthermore, banking on their 15-seat gain just two years ago and the 2018 midterm elections, which led Democrats to take back Virginia’s congressional delegation from the GOP, recruitment and training on part of the liberal party is likely to be well-funded in such a consequential election.