In the 37th, it’s hard to go wrong in the City of Fairfax. Well, aside from the fact that no matter who is elected, neither of them will be Chap Petersen, the current delegate, whose enthusiasm, energy and brains will be sorely missed.
John Mason (R) and David Bulova (D) are both well qualified with good experience and the best interests of their constituents at heart. There are few differences in their positions on the issues. The candidates both signed a pledge to avoid negative campaigning. The civility pledge has provided a welcome relief from several intensely vitriolic contests nearby.
David Bulova brings a remarkable depth of knowledge on the environment, and civic activism in a number of key areas, including consumer protection, land use, human services and crime prevention. But he would be going to Richmond as a freshman legislator facing a steep learning curve.
John Mason brings years of experience on transportation issues, having served on every regional transportation commission.
Mason’s priorities on transportation include dedicated funding for Metro, extending rail and transit, and emphasis on the 2020 plan. The key issue, of course, is funding.
Mason also fully understands that localities in Northern Virginia need more authority and autonomy. Like Tom Rust, former mayor of Herndon, and Patsy Ticer, former mayor of the City of Alexandria, Mason’s experience as mayor of the City of Fairfax provides an invaluable perspective for a member of the General Assembly.
Given the similarity in their views, we come down narrowly in favor of Mason. It seems advantageous to send an experienced legislator from the majority party. Mason expects to hit the ground running and hopes to be a voice for Northern Virginia on the transportation committee.