Editorial: Don’t Be Among the Missing

Editorial: Don’t Be Among the Missing

Last time Virginia elected a governor, 1.7 million voters failed to vote after voting the previous year.

In 2008, 74.5 percent of Virginia’s registered voters turned out to vote in the presidential election. In 2009, the last time Virginians elected a governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general and members of the House of Delegates, just 40.4 percent of registered voters came out to vote.

That is to say that 1.7 million voters went missing in the commonwealth.

Last November, more than 70 percent of Virginia’s registered voters turned out. Will this November see 40 percent or less? Choices at the statewide level could hardly be more stark, and low turnout will make the outcome unpredictable.

It’s a mistake for people offended by the inflammatory and derogatory rhetoric by the Republican nominee for lieutenant governor, E.W. Jackson, to think that he is unelectable in Virginia or that his negatives will make Ken Cuccinelli, Republican nominee for governor, unelectable.

It all depends on who turns out to vote.

As an example, in November 2007, incumbent state Sen. Ken Cuccinelli (R-37) won re-election by less than one-half of a percentage point, with an edge of just 92 votes out of 37,185 ballots cast, beating Democrat Janet Oleszek. Approximately 32 percent of registered voters in the 37th District cast ballots at the polls in that election. Imagine what might be different today if that race had gone differently. Cuccinelli was first elected to the Virginia Senate in 2002 in a special election.

Primary June 11

Primary Election Day is Tuesday, June 11, with absentee voting currently underway.

Voters in the Democratic primary will choose between Ralph S. Northam and Aneesh Chopra for lieutenant governor; and between Mark R. Herring and Justin E. Fairfax for attorney general.

In Fairfax County, there is also Democratic primary for District 86, between Jennifer Boysko and Herb Kemp, with the winner facing incumbent Tom Rust (R).

The polls will be open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. on June 11.

Below are some good sources for information on upcoming elections:

Virginia State Board of Elections

Virginia Public Access Project

Fairfax County Board of Elections

Alexandria Board of Elections

Arlington Board of Elections

City of Fairfax Board of Elections

Falls Church City Board of Elections

Father’s Day Photos

Father’s Day is June 16, and as in years past, the Connection will publish a gallery of photos of fathers, grandfathers, great grandfathers and sons and daughters. Send your photos, including names of everyone in the photo, ages of children, town of residence and a brief description of what is happening to editors@connectionnewspapers.com.