After more than 25 years, Ken Plum fits his district like an old shoe, but a shoe that still packs a punch, or a kick if you will. While Plum doesn’t tout his leadership roles in any way that could be construed as blowing his own horn, his leadership has been significant and is still badly needed.
Plum, 63, carried much of Gov. Mark Warner’s budget reform through the stormy House of Delegates, working with moderate Republicans on the tax reform.
While Plum does face an opponent in Libertarian Donny Ferguson, he has no Republican opponent this year. It’s still important for voters in Reston and the 36th district to head to the polls to reinforce support for Plum and the school bond and statewide candidates.
Plum can inject a little reason in a House of Delegates where “the influence of the ultra conservatives is beyond their numbers,” where grandstanding at the expense of immigrants and gay residents is rampant.
Plum is smart and crafty, with years of experience working in his favor. His behind-the-scenes efforts to help the Northern Virginia delegation hang together, to encourage more moderate legislators to recognize their common ground, has been an ongoing benefit to the region.
In recent years, Plum has been a key proponent of the Dulles Rail project, which will extend Metrorail service through Reston and on to Dulles International Airport.
He has also taken a courageous stand in favor of equal rights for gay and lesbian Virginians, sponsoring a bill each legislative session over the past five years that would allow localities to prohibit discrimination against a person based on their sexual orientation.