It’s official — I am running for re-election as your Delegate to the Virginia General Assembly and will be back on the ballot! It was just six years ago when I turned in my first set of petitions to run to be the Delegate representing the 44th district. I once again have filed the necessary signatures from constituents on petitions of qualified voters. This means I’ll be back on the ballot for a 4th time, and I will work very hard to earn your vote once again. Over the next six months I will knock on doors (as soon as it is safe to do so), distribute yard signs, raise campaign funds, send out mailers on my positions and legislative successes, organize events, and continue to reach out and listen to my constituents and advocate for our community — the community where I grew up, work, and raised a family.
Indeed, every two years each candidate for the House of Delegates (there are 100 delegates) must gather 125 signatures from registered voters in their district in order to qualify to be placed on the ballot for the primary. Gathering these signatures during a pandemic posed a unique challenge this year. Due to a decision passed down by the Richmond Circuit Court in February, candidates running for the House of Delegates are allowed to gather and submit signatures received electronically, as long as those petition signers include the last four digits of their social security numbers. Signatures gathered in person are witnessed by the petition circulator, so these do not need to have social security numbers (though they must still be formally notarized). This was a great alternative to ensure that candidates can collect signatures in a safe and timely manner.
Luckily, I was able to get more than enough signatures both in person and via the online method. In fact, we were fortunate to have great weather during the last few weeks to host a few outdoor drive-through and walk-up signature gathering events around the community. It was nice to see some of my neighbors in person (and masked!) after so long to just chat and catch up, or for those who may not know me yet, to introduce myself. It is what I like best about Mount Vernon and Lee—the friendliness, keen political interest, and caring camaraderie of community members.
In addition to signature collecting, each House candidate for a primary must submit a filing fee of $352.80, (or 2% of the total annual salary of a House of Delegates member which equals $17,640), a Declaration of Candidacy form, and a notarized Certificate of Candidate Qualifications which must be turned into the Virginia Department of Elections in Richmond. It’s not too onerous, but it is a necessary biennial ritual that must be completed just so.
Thank you to everyone who contributed online and in-person to my signature collecting endeavor! I look forward to another successful campaign season and running on the ballot with the three statewide Democratic candidates we are voting for in the June 8th primary (and early voting begins April 23rd), Governor, Lt. Governor, and Attorney General. Just as it was two years ago, you will have a choice of whom to vote for in November as I ran into my opponent from the Republican party also out collecting signatures. And yes, before you wonder, of course I signed his petition too! I support the two-party system and recognize it is important that both parties present the people a choice of candidates. Moreover, I look forward to a rigorous debate of the issues our community and Commonwealth is facing this campaign season.
As always, it is my honor and privilege to represent you and the good people of the 44th district, from Marlan Forest and Belle Haven to Woodlawn and Hayfield, and everywhere between the river and Huntley Meadows Park. I will continue to work hard to create an economy that works for all Virginians, promote renewable energy to protect our planet, and grow our investment in our children through quality public education. I will never stop fighting for what is right because I know that the hardworking people of our community and across Virginia deserve the best.
Please do not hesitate to reach out if you have any questions or concerns. My website is https://www.paulkrizek.com/ where you can find my contact information and many of my legislative priorities and positions. Please stay safe and continue to exercise good judgment in wearing your mask and keeping a safe distance.