Democratic candidate David Poisson won the Virginia House of Delegates race for the 32nd District Tuesday, beating Republican incumbent Dick Black, 11,902 to 10,496 votes with all but one precinct reporting.
"We stayed focused on the issues that matter most to the people, education and transportation," Poisson said. "That was the key to our campaign."
Poisson campaign volunteers and supporters filled O’Faolain’s Irish Pub in Sterling to celebrate Poisson’s win. Balloons filled the air. People wore necklaces with fish-shaped beads. "This means we can move away from protectionism for small, specialized groups and back to support for the greater general good," said campaign volunteer Sandra Fluger. "This could mean a change for the country. Virginia’s gone Democratic."
BLACK THANKED his friends and family for their support over the years at the Lansdowne Resort in Sterling, after learning the unofficial results. He thanked his wife, Barbara Black, his daughter, Michelle Staton, and his campaign manager, Callie Chaplow. "I think everyone in the room has done incredible things," Black said.
Black supporter Becky Brennan said she is concerned about Poisson’s election to the Virginia House of Delegates. "We have almost always lived in a Republican district," Brennan said. "I do not know what to expect, but I bet we will see higher taxes. The average tax payer who is concerned about property taxes now has not seen anything yet."
Black was first elected to the House in 1998.
AT TIMES, the campaign was heated. In September, Black issued a letter to his constituents, which linked Poisson to the political organization, BlackOut2005. Poisson denied the allegations. At the Loudoun County League of Women Voters debate in October, Black referred to Poisson as "Poison" and as a liberal. Black said he best represented Loudoun County.
After spending weeknights and weekends knocking on Loudoun County doors, Poisson proved he best represents the people.
"I was surprised by the number of voters," Poisson said. "We had a good sense of how people might vote. The question was whether people would show up at the polls. We worked hard and obviously did a very good job."
POISSON CAMPAIGN manager Andrew Resnick said the key to their campaign was unity "amongst people who wanted to fight real issues, issues that actually affected them."
Fifty-three percent of the 32nd District voted for the Democratic candidate.
During his campaign, Poisson focused on education and transportation. At the Loudoun County League of Women Voter’s debate, Poisson said he wanted to ensure a better future for Loudoun County children.
Poisson plans to alleviate the transportation problem by widening Route 7 and improve teacher pay and benefits.
Sugarland Run’s district chair Larry Hannon said he was impressed by Poisson and his campaign. "He has been out in our neighborhoods," Hannon said. "In my heart, I believe Dave is doing all that he can do. He is a parent, involved in activities. I know he will fight for what we need."