February 2, 2023

Democrats just announced they erased Republican control of Virginia House of Delegates

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After an already historic Election Day in Virginia, in which Democrats flipped a staggering 16 seats in the State House to put them within striking distance of taking control, election administrators were forced to launch a recount of Virginia’s 94th district, one of four districts slated to recount razor thin voting margins.


While Republican incumbent David Yancey initially led by 10 votes going to the recount, Democratic challenger Shelly Simonds has overcome the deficit to eke out a stunning victory in her district.

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The development officially erases Republican control of the House of Delegates, which – prior to Election Day – Republicans controlled by a safe 66 to 34 majority.

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The results come on the heels of a drama-filled day in which both candidates picked up essential votes in various precincts.

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In a miraculous turn of fortunes, Democrat Simonds went from being down 10 votes to winning – unofficially – by one single vote.

The results still need to be certified by a Supreme Court panel that will verify the tally.

An emotional Simonds, for her part, took to the street to celebrate.

In terms of Virginia’s other contested districts, the Republican delegate held onto his seat in the Fairfax district. The other two districts’ recounts are slated for Wednesday and Thursday this week.

Today’s development in Virginia is only the latest in a wave of stunning Democratic success stories around the country. Thus far, Democrats have unseated Republicans in a vast number of what were thought to be unwinnable races. Aside from flipping New Jersey’s and winning Virginia’s gubernatorial races, Democrats also win a historic victory electing Doug Jones to the Alabama Senate, the first time that a Democrat has one in that state in a quarter century.

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Democrats have also picked up a slew of seats in other races around the country, including those in Georgia, Washington, and Florida.

Since the beginning of 2017, Democrats have flipped 15 seats in special elections. Republicans have flipped zero. In total, Democrats flipped 35 seats from red to blue. Even in solidly red districts, such as those in Oklahoma, South Carolina, Kansas, and now Alabama, Democrats are overperforming Trump’s numbers by double digits.

As the Trump administration and its Republican enablers in Congress continue their assault on the will of the American people – from healthcare to tax cuts for the rich to net neutrality to immigration – voters across the country are delivering a serious message to the White House, one race at a time.

As Republicans’ fortunes continue to shift for the worst in Virginia, Democrats’ appetites are now whetted as they seek victories across the entire country.

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Brian Tyler Cohen

Managing editor

Brian Tyler Cohen is a political writer, actor, and comedy sketch director. He graduated from Lehigh University with a dual degree in English and Business. He currently lives in Los Angeles.

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