VA-10. State Senator Jennifer Wexton (D) hopes to unseat Congresswoman Barbara Comstock (R) in Virginia’s 10th Congressional District. A typically gerrymandered Virginia district, the 10th stretches from inside the Capital Beltway to well west of Winchester. As a resident of the 10th I watch the elections in that district closely. This one is shaping up to be a doozy. Far left Jennifer Wexton is running on an anti-Trump platform while trying to avoid taking a position on any issue relevant to the constituents she hopes to represent. Meanwhile, Barbara Comstock is running as an embarrassed Republican who tries to avoid gazing east at the current occupant of the Oval Office. Think Nelson Rockafeller in drag. All in all I think Barbara Comstock has done a better job of explaining herself and focusing on issues that are relevant to her district. One issue in particular stands out for me – the allegation that Wexton has sold out Northern Virginia during her time in the General Assembly.
Don’t get Wexton’ed. Recent negative ads run by the National Republican Congressional Committee (presumably) on behalf of Barbara Comstock hit a point that hasn’t been hit before. The ads call out Jennifer Wexton for her role in the General Assembly’s massive rip off of Northern Virginia. The 30 second ads are punchy and direct. One ad has a graphic that shows money raining out of NoVa into Richmond. It cites high tolls and NoVa – only taxes. Needless to say, Jennifer Wexton is the highlighted villain. Another ad shows traffic jams and tolls in NoVa then cuts to a single car effortlessly driving down an otherwise empty road claiming, “The rest of the state rides for free.” As far as I’m concerned, the ads are completely on target and finally call out the gutless NoVa politicians we have elected for selling out their constituents.
I wish I could drive I295. For many people from Northern Virginia there certainly seems to be a vast sucking sound coming from the General Assembly in Richmond. There also seems to be a two class system when it comes to a lot of things including transportation. Take Richmond for example … the city, not the state government. The OMB defines the greater Richmond area as comprising thirteen counties, including the principal cities of Richmond, Petersburg, Hopewell, and Colonial Heights. As of 2016, it had a population of 1,263,617. Somehow, this qualifies the area for a 4 lane “beltway” called I295. Meanwhile, the greater Washington area has a population of 6.1m as of 2016. It also has a 4 lane beltway in NoVa. An area with 4.7 times the population of Richmond somehow ends up with the same sized highway encircling it as Richmond gets? And Jennifer Wexton thinks that’s all fine and dandy? Comstock’s right – let’s not get Wexton’ed.
Thanks, Barbara. Jennifer Wexton is hardly alone in selling out her constituents. All 140 seats in the Virginia General Assembly are up for election in 2019 including every state politician claiming to represent Northern Virginia. It’s high time that all of NoVa’s politicians are taken to task for selling out their constituents. Hopefully these ads and others like them will continue to haunt the comfy re-election dreams of our political class in Northern Virginia. If our politicians want to argue about their role in grifting NoVa the approach is easy … clearly and quantitatively document the amount of money taken by state and local government in NoVa and compare it to the amount of money spent by state and local government in NoVa. Then … defend the difference. I happen to know that a number of General Assembly members from NoVa read this blog (at least occasionally). Any of you who read this – are you up for the challenge of demonstrating the fairness of your actions vis-a-vis inflows and outflows of money from NoVa? I won’t hold my breath.
— Don Rippert