August 23, 2011 | by Phil Reese
Gay candidate wins Virginia Senate primary

Expected to be the biggest hurdle on the way to the Virginia Senate, gay member of the House of Delegates, Adam Ebbin, defeated both of his primary opponents in Tuesday’s primary in the heavily Democratic 30th district.

Ebbin told the Blade Wednesday he felt great when it set in that his opponents had conceded.

“Its a relief when a primary like this that’s gone on for so many months is over, but it was hard to believe at first that everything we had hoped had worked out.”

Ebbin is very grateful for the work of his supporters.

“I’m excited about the prospect of being in the Senate and I just can’t thank enough the people who helped me to this.”

Ebbin will now face off in November against Republican nominee Tim McGhee, a web-designer and small business owner.

Ebbin is ready to transition into the general election mode.

“There will be many more people to reach, people of different political parties and independents. It will still be an undertaking to meet as many people from the different communities in the district that I should meet.”

Ebbin has represented the 49th District in the Virginia House of Delegates since 2004, and has been a progressive voice in state politics during his time in office. Ebbin has received numerous endorsements recently including from Equality Virginia, Virginia Partisans Gay and Lesbian Democratic Club, the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund and the Professional Firefighters and Paramedics Associations.

Ebbin, Arlington School Board member Libby Garvey and Alexandria City Council member, Rob Krupicka were vying for the seat being vacated by 16-year incumbent Patsy Ticer. The race was unusually expensive for a primary with the three candidates raising well over $500,000.

A 5.8-measured earthquake earlier Tuesday forced some polling locations in Virginia to move voting outside, and several more were closed briefly as polling workers left the buildings for safety. According to State Board of Election officials, the longest such delay was 30 minutes. The State Board, however, chose to keep all polling locations open and to maintain regular voting hours and chose not to postpone primaries, nor extend voting times.

Some Virginia precinct captains in the 30th, used to relying on cellular phones, reported having to locate a landline to make calls out related to the election as cellular service in most of the Washington D.C. area was temporarily disrupted due to system overload following the earthquake.

According to the Del Ray Patch blog site, the polling location in the Alexandria City Hall was closed and relocated to Tavern Square.

Ebbin is also quite ready to take his energy and passion to the Senate.

“I think I’ll be able to get more done if we can hold the majority,” Ebbin said of his future senate career. “I think I will have more bills pass. And I will continue working on a number of things that I believe in, including nondiscrimination, the environment and other issues such as prenatal care, and protections for seniors and those who need assistance.”

Ebbin’s top legislative priorities in the Senate will make his progressive constituents very happy, saying, “renewable energy, transit, and non-discrimination in state hiring would be among the first.”

 

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