It’s official. The once deep-red Commonwealth of Virginia is now a blue state. As a result of the Nov. 5 election, Democrats now hold all three of the statewide constitutional offices, both U.S. Senate seats, the majority of its Congress members, and both chambers of the State House.
The group in question, New Virginia Majority (NVM), has exploited Virginia’s changing population and “liberal bleed out” from the Washington area to flip not just Northern Virginia but also districts across the state. Based in Alexandria and Richmond, NVM has sent hundreds of paid workers and volunteers out across the commonwealth to register and send to the polls hundreds of thousands of new voters—all under the nose of the Virginia Republican Party.
The Democrats have flipped two state Senate seats, and now hold a 10-vote advantage in the Assembly. NVM endorsed and supported 23 Virginia candidates this cycle and won with 15 of them, including two state Senate races and nine Assembly victories.
- Ghazala Hashmi, Virginia Senate District 10
- John Bell, Virginia Senate District 13
- Wendy Gooditis, House District 10
- Kelly Convirs-Fowler, House District 21
- Elizabeth Guzman, House District 31
- Dan Helmer, House District 40
- Kathy Tran, House District 42
- Hala Ayala, House District 51
- Schuyler VanValkenburg, House District 72
- Rodney Willett, House District 73
- Shelly Simonds, House District 94
- Steve Descano, Fairfax County Commonwealth's Attorney
- Parisi Deghani-Tafti, Arlington County and Fall's Church Commonwealth's Attorney
- Buta Biberaj, Loudoun County Commonwealth's Attorney
- Phyllis Randall, Chair Loudoun County Board of Supervisors
"The national Democratic Party spent millions in Virginia this year, but the state wasn’t always such a priority. From its position in the South to its prominent role in America’s legacy of oppression, Virginia was long considered reliably conservative—unbreakable. As recently as six years ago, Republicans controlled the office of the governor and the General Assembly.
"Virginia’s state constitution bars anyone with a felony conviction from voting until their rights have been restored by the governor. For more than nine years, we organized formerly incarcerated women and men to help them demand that their full civil rights be restored. The former governor, Terry McAuliffe, restored the voting rights of more than 173,000 Virginians during his term, more than any other governor in Virginia’s history. In 2016, of the nearly 20,000 men and women who registered to vote for the first time as a result of the restoration of their rights, a whopping 79 percent voted. They were a key voting bloc in Virginia, the only Southern state that Hillary Clinton won."NVM worked closely with McAuliffe to win ex-felon voting rights. The organization actually gave the governor an award at its annual dinner for his sterling work.
"Changes in the shape of the electorate and rising enthusiasm among voters can only go so far, without campaign architecture that channels those changes into tangible political outcomes. ...
"Engaging meaningfully with voters of color means talking to tens of thousands of voters to make sure they have the information they need to cast their ballots even after receiving racist Republican campaign communications. ... We didn’t need to persuade voters to embrace our worldview—they were already there on the issues. They just needed to be convinced that their vote mattered. To give one example of how this works in practical terms, in precincts in the Virginia suburbs of Washington, turnout this year increased by 24 percent over 2017. ...
Maoist GroupsNVM is led by longtime FRSO/Liberation Road cadre Jon Liss of Alexandria. Several FRSO cadres have served in NVM over the years, as have many activists from two NVM satellite groups, LeftRoots and the Virginia Student Power Network.
FRSO/Liberation Road comes out of the militantly pro-China American Maoist student movement of the 1970s. While it's more discreet about its Chinese loyalties these days, several of its leading supporters maintain close ties to the People’s Republic.
McClure has used his skills in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to supply highly targeted voter identification information to NVM.
"I have been recently working with New Virginia Majority to make a series of maps to inform planning for precinct walks in Virginia State house districts. ... The core data are lists of individual households by pan-ethnic census categories. ... The results are subjective but do suggest ... the ways that actual communities conform or diverge from the discrete territorial units which define an electoral terrain in a democracy."All this wasn't theoretical. It was designed to help NVM flip districts across the state by micro-targeting potential Democratic voters in low-income and minority communities. In another post, he wrote:
"In the general elections of 2008, Virginia voted Democratic for the first time since 1964 with Obama carrying the state. Demographic shifts and increased voter participation rather than a shift in political allegiances account for this outcome. ...
"Focusing on Prince William County, Virginia, I applied spatial interpolation techniques in a GIS to translate the 2008 election returns from the geography of precincts to year 2000 zoning classification areas for further quantitative analysis. The goal was to produce actionable intelligence for working class organizations building popular power at the base. ...
"The far right, racism, militarism, inequality, and poverty are all centered in the South. The majority of African Americans, the main protagonist of progressive politics in this country, live in the South. And the South has more electoral votes, battleground state votes, population, and congresspersons than any other region.
"The South is changing rapidly, giving rise to more progressive demographic groups—especially Black and Latino migrations, LGBTQs and urbanites—and a growing Democratic vote. These trends can only be maximized if the importance of the South is understood as a strategic necessity and the chance to win state by state, is acknowledged and acted upon.
"(1) A critical mass of Southern states can and must be won if we are to block or defeat the right in presidential elections. Three of the five or so critical battleground states are in the South: Florida, Virginia and North Carolina. Southern blue and battleground states plus Washington D.C. hold 38 percent of the electoral votes needed to win.
"(2) Winning an anti-rightwing congressional majority depends on winning in the South, as the South has a bigger congressional delegation than any other region and Southern congresspersons also hold key leadership posts within the Republican Party's congressional hierarchies.
"(3) There are tremendous opportunities to build progressive political power and governance at the local level in the South as 105 counties have a Black majority. ...
"While some might dismiss the South, focusing strategically on the Northeast and Pacific Coast as central to a progressive program and the Midwest as the main political battleground, the South's dynamic growth, historical legacy of Black struggle and powerful political weight make it a critical battlefield.
"This essay was prepared in March 2015, prior to the 2016 election season that eventually resulted in Donald Trump's victory. However, the far rightwing's capture of the presidency makes this essay's main arguments even more important. ...
Chinese 'Collusion'?Trump has been tougher on Beijing than has any other president in living memory. It's no secret that China doesn't like Trump and would love to see him defeated in 2020.
Rather than risk war, or suffer huge economic setbacks, wouldn’t it be much cheaper and easier to use China’s American assets, such as Liberation Road, to ensure Trump’s defeat by “democratic” means?
It's inconceivable that the Chinese government didn’t know what McClure was up to. After all, they presumably pay his salary or living costs while he is in China.
It’s clear that Liberation Road is tied to China. It's also clear that their front-group NVM is heavily involved in U.S. electoral politics and played a decisive role in turning Virginia blue. It's also obvious that Liberation Road’s goal is to destroy President Trump and the Republican Party to pave the way for a socialist America.
Is there Chinese “collusion” here? Do we need investigations and executive action against these subversive groups before they're able to fully realize their goals? With less than a year until the 2020 election, there's not much time left to do so.