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Will Drabold @WillDrabold
, 35 tweets, 15 min read Read on Twitter
I'm at Water's Edge Brewery in Lake Ridge, Virginia tonight. Six of the seven VA House of Delegates seats here are held by Republicans. Tonight, that may change wildly.
Those seats in Prince William County, Virginia's second most populous, are a test of the anti-Trump grassroots movements spurred on by the Democratic party and progressive groups.
Of 8 groups, like @MoveOn, @BoldProgressive and @TheDLCC, that made endorsements in VA House races, 41% of their endorsements came to six Democrats challenging Republican incumbents in this county.
These groups wanted to show investment in local candidates could flip districts gerrymandered by Republicans into Democratic hands.
Tonight will tell one of two tales. 1) A bold, economic, progressive message that is locally focused will beat incumbent Republicans or 2) that message isn't enough to overcome low, off-year turnout, incumbency and gerrymandering.
If it ends up being the former, that sends a BIG message for Democrats in 2018.

Run younger, fresh candidates.
Focus local.
Run on a progressive agenda.
Unseat Republicans.

We'll soon see if 1-3 lead to 4!
First big result here: @pwcdanica is the first D “flip” of an R district. She will be the first transgender member of VA House of Delegates.
Other key races: Democrats @JCarrollFoy, @guzman4delegate and @HalaAyala winning their races so far. Returns not all in. Three potential D pickups.
BREAKING: A wave is coming tonight. Will be monitoring from my view of it in Virginia's second largest county. mic.com/articles/18589…
BIG NEWS: Lee Carter, a Dem candidate written off by state party, has BEATEN a GOP incumbent. VA House of Delegates starting to really trend D. #wave
Two weeks ago, local paper said that raced had been “abandoned” by state Dem party. richmond.com/news/virginia/…
It’s starting to look like prognostication of this race was very wrong and too conservative.
Dems were telling me late last week they hoped to pick up THREE Virginia House of Delegates seats. It’s going to be well more than that.
MORE: @HalaAyala has won her Delegate race. So has @JCarrollFoy. Looking good for @guzman4delegate too. That's FOUR, likely five, Democratic pickups (out of 100 statewide seats) in ONE Virginia county.
I don't care what narrative you're watching tonight. This is the one that matters: Progressive + grassroots groups came into Virginia and INVESTED across the board in winning down ballot races. It's paying off, BIGLY.
The moment @HalaAyala was announced as winning her House of Delegates race. Dems in this county have flipped four of seven House seats so far tonight. #wave
This is the energy associated with going from beaten down/irrelevant party to surging back to power at the ballot box. #VA
NEWS: Big night developing for @ForwardMajority. The group was playing exclusively in hard-to-win VA House races without party/outside group support.
Two of their nine candidates have won so far tonight. (They weren’t betting on winning any races.) Lee Carter (50) and Kelly Fowler (21).
Good lord, now it's three for @ForwardMajority. Debra Rodman (73) has unseated a GOP incumbent outside of Richmond.
And now, @guzman4delegate officially wins back in Prince William County. Looking like Dems +8 in the #VAHouse so far tonight.
Somewhere, progressive masterminds @ezralevin and @benwikler are grinning.
VIDEO: “I wanted to become the first, first-generation Puerto Rican American elected to the Virginia General Assembly.” Now, @guzman4delegate is. #VAHouse
This wasn’t supposed to happen. Off, off-year so low turnout projection. Lots of R gerrymandering. Candidates winning were unabashedly progressive. Groups predicted 3-5 pickups last week. Already 8+ D pickups in #VAHouse.
Race is on: Dems now predicting they’ve flipped 12 House of Delegates seats. Need 17 to take control of #VAHouse. NO ONE predicted that.
VIDEO: This woman, @JCarrollFoy, was endorsed across the board by progressive and Democratic groups. Top prospect for them. She addresses @realDonaldTrump HEAD ON in her victory speech. #VAHouse
“We are 125 votes from sweeping Prince William County.” Dems here on the verge of flipping 6 House of Delegates races blue.
UPDATE: Democrats here now saying they’re on the verge of FLIPPING the Virginia House of Delegates. Looking at winning potentially 17, 18 seats. Unprecedented.
.@WorkingFamilies has won 6 of the 7 races it played in for #VAHouse. Four of those were in bellwether Prince William County.
Statements pouring into Inbox. Summary: Tonight in #Virginia is the vindication of their strategy that progressives desperately sought.
Statement from @IndivisibleTeam on their impact in #Virginia.
Powerful statement from @pwcdanica, first transgender member of VA assembly. Watch this:
The face of change in #Virginia: These four women beat four white, male Republicans, including three incumbents, in their House of Delegates races.
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