Hampton Roads incumbents come out on top in party primaries
This story was updated Wednesday, June 21 at 1:23 p.m.
Sen. Louise Lucas beat Sen. Lionel Spruill in a Democratic primary, solidifying Hampton Roads' representation in state Senate leadership and pushing Spruill out of an almost 30-year career in the General Assembly.
“When power shifts, especially in politics, that means that all of the focus, the first priorities of funding, initiatives are in that area,” said Eric Claville, a political and legal commentator at Norfolk State University. “Hampton Roads has enjoyed for a very, very long time the center of power for the Democratic Party.”
Lucas' primary win makes her re-election come November much easier: Her district is considered safely Democratic in general elections. Following some Senate retirements in Northern Virginia, she's poised to be the most senior Democrat in the state Senate, maintaining her spot as Senate Pro Tempore and setting party priorities.
Other notable results include:
- Republican Del. Emily Brewer beat former NASCAR driver Hermie Sadler to represent the new 17th Senate District. Brewer will face Democratic Del. Clint Jenkins in November.
- Del. Angelia Willians Graves winning over Norfolk city councilwoman Andria McClellan, likely securing her election to the state Senate because the new 21st Senate District is safely Democratic.
- One incumbent didn't have the same success: Republican Christie New Craig, a protege to former Republican Sen. John Cosgrove, beat incumbent Del. Tim Anderson, who left his House seat to run for the 19th Senate District. Anderson was one incumbent who was redistricted into a new area with another incumbent from his party.
- Incumbent Kelly Fowler held on to win the Democratic nomination in a tight four-way race in Virginia Beach's 96th House District.
See all primary results at the Department of Elections.