dglobalnews.com Ralph Northam wins Democratic nomination for governor
Published: Wed, June 14, 2017
National | By Glenda Ortiz

Ralph Northam wins Democratic nomination for governor

Ralph Northam wins Democratic nomination for governor

Northam's win capped off fierce competition on the Democratic side, with Northam facing off against former congressman Tom Perriello.

We're joining Senator Bernie Sanders and endorsing Tom for his bold stand against two fracked natural gas pipelines, the Atlantic Coast pipeline and the Mountain Valley pipeline.

On a 90-degree night here outside Washington, about 200 Northam supporters waited for polls to close on the patio of a bar called Highline RXR.

But a primary challenge from the right has forced Gillespie into some uncomfortable territory as he would much rather look ahead to the general election.

Virginia is one of only two states electing new governors this year, and the swing-state contest is likely to draw intense national scrutiny for signs of how voters are reacting to Trump's first year in office.

For example, if you vote in the Democratic primary in South Richmond, you'll vote for Democratic candidates for Governor, Lt. Governor, Sheriff, and Treasurer.

"We want you to be part of our effort", Gillespie said, adding that Virginia can not afford another four years with a Democrat as governor. A long-time player in state politics, he is backed by the state party's elite, including sitting governor Terry McAuliffe and senator Tim Kaine. And it shows that Perriello's sharp contrast with Northam on climate and clean energy is resonating with Virginia voters alarmed by Donald Trump's efforts to send Virginia back to a coal-fired, polluted era.

With almost 90 percent of the ballots counted, Gillespie was leading in Virginia's gubernatorial primary by a less than 1 percent margin over Republican rival Corey Stewart in a race that appeared headed to a likely recount.

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Some viewed the close battle as a pitting of the Sanders wing of the party, as channeled by Perriello, against the Clinton wing of the party, represented by Northam. Northam has emphasized his biography - rural upbringing, Army veteran, and pediatric neurologist - as well as his bona fides with key progressive groups that make up the Democratic base. No other poll has shown him holding more than 18 percent of the primary vote.

In the primary for lieutenant governor, Justin Fairfax, an attorney from northern Virginia, has won the Democratic nomination while Republican Jill Vogel won her party's nomination.

In the Republican primary for Governor, Ed Gillespie has a lead of fewer than 2000 votes over Corey Stewart, with Frank Wagner running a distant third.

We expect that today may be the day that voters in Virginia wake up to the fact that there is a primary election on June 13, which is indeed tomorrow. Three Republicans are seeking their party's nomination. "Perriello can be a bridge from traditional Democrats and his vision that he is now on the progressive side".

Polls closed in Virginia Tuesday evening and election officials began counting ballots for both parties' candidates. A very low turnout helps Northam, whose supporters are significantly older than Perriello's.

Northam also has cast himself a pragmatic leader able to work across the aisle with the GOP-led General Assembly on issues like tax reform.

Northam had received 56 percent of the vote as of 8 p.m. EST, compared to Perriello's 44 percent.

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