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Stamos Rolls to Lopsided Win in Low-Turnout Primary Tuesday

It came as no surprise that Theo Stamos, whose Democratic primary race for Arlington Commonwealth Attorney was the only thing on the ballot in the City of Falls Church, would win by a landslide.

 

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ON ELECTION DAY TUESDAY, Theo Stamos (second from right) showed up at the City of Falls Church voting precinct at the F.C. Community Center, greeted by supporters Tom Clinton, Cathy Kaye and (far right) Jody Acosta. (Photo: News-Press)

It came as no surprise that Theo Stamos, whose Democratic primary race for Arlington Commonwealth Attorney was the only thing on the ballot in the City of Falls Church, would win by a landslide.

Landslide is not a robust-enough word to describe it. The long-time Chief Deputy Commonwealth Attorney, she racked up 11,190 votes to 2,415 for her opponent, Arlington attorney David Deane, for 82.24 percent of the vote.

She fared even better in Falls Church, garnering 84.77 percent, spread fairly evenly over the Little City’s six voting precincts, above 88 percent in two precincts and barely under 80 in only one. She had the endorsement of the News-Press.

But there were only 519 votes cast in Falls Church, following the pattern statewide of under 10 percent turnouts for both Democratic and Republican primaries, mostly for state legislative posts, in 50 jurisdictions statewide.

At stake is control of the legislature following the November general election, with the GOP targeting the Democrats’ slim 22-18 control in the State Senate, and the Democrats hoping to erode the Republicans wide advantage in the House of Delegates.

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In four other important Democratic primaries in the region, two were expected landslides – for Barbara Favola in the 31st State Senate district and Alfonso Lopez in the House 49th District – and two were nail-biters.

In one of the close ones, State Del. Adam Ebbin edged out a narrow victory over two high-profile opponents to win the nomination in the 30th State Senate district of Arlington and a southern portion of greater Falls Church being vacated by veteran Sen. Pasty Ticer’s retirement.

In the other close one, former Fairfax School Board member Janet Oleszak carried a hair-thin 42-vote lead over Christopher Wade for Fairfax County’s Braddock District supervisor, with all 27 precincts reporting Tuesday night.

On the Republican side, Bill Cooper III won handily over Wes Kammerer for the party’s nomination for Fairfax County Sheriff, garnering 74 percent of the vote.

Regional party officials were sharply divided in all four Democratic contested races. In all the cases, Democrats are expected to have little trouble winning the general election in November.
The most contentious race was between Favola, a veteran Arlington County Board member running against Jaime Areizaga-Soto. The most bad blood was incurred in that contest, with personal charges and counter-charges. However, Favola, running with the endorsement of retiring State Sen. Mary Margaret Whipple, wound up winning handily with 65 percent of the vote.
(Whipple’s 31st District was redrawn this spring to exclude the City of Falls Church).

For the 49th House of Delegates district, including Arlington and greater Falls Church, long-time Democratic activist Lopez sailed with 66 percent of the vote over Stephanie Clifford. Lopez won some big support in his run for the open seat – vacated by Ebbin’s decision to seek the State Senate post – with former Virginia governor and U.S. Senate candidate Tim Kaine showing up for a fundraiser on his behalf last Saturday night.

Ebbin won the three-way 30th Senate District primary by amassing 4,562 votes (39 percent of the total) to 4,231 (36 percent) for Alexandria City Councilman Rob Krupicka and 2,976 (25 percent) for Arlington School Board member Libby Garvey.

Ebbin, who is the first and only openly-gay member of the Virginia State Legislature, risked losing his seat in the legislature by abandoning his House of Delegates seat to run for the State Senate.

While U.S. Rep. Jim Moran did not endorse anyone in Tuesday’s primary, Rep. Jerry Connolly backed Krupicka, and a number of regional Democratic officials fell on all three sides in the primary.

In the war of newspaper endorsements, the Washington Post backed Krupicka, and the News-Press backed Ebbin, as it did when Ebbin won his party’s nomination in a narrow five-way primary to first win his House of Delegates seat in 2003.

In a press release from the Arlington Democratic Committee issued yesterday, it was stressed that, following the primary, all the candidates “expressed unity and support for the Democratic nominees.” It added, “We look forward to all campaigns being able to turn their energy into supporting our united ticket in November.”

Stamos, in a statement yesterday, said “I am both honored and humbled by the result,” adding, “To all of our friends, old and new, thank you for the confidence you have shown in me, thank you for your friendship, and thank you for voting for me for this very important position.”

She added thanks for her opponent, David Deane, “for running such a thoughtful and dignified campaign. I appreciate his professionalism and the many contributions he made to this process and to the Democratic Party.”

Deane, in a statement yesterday, said, “This was a difficult race, as I had to run against an excellent attorney, who I both like and respect. I am sure she will tackle this next professional challenge with the same grace and professionalism that she has always exhibited.”

 

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