WASHINGTON—Today, People For the American Way’s (PFAW) Next Up Victory Fund announced its slate of Virginia House of Delegates endorsements at a press conference with Governor Terry McAuliffe, House Democratic Caucus Chair Charniele Herring, and House of Delegates candidates. Next Up supports young progressive candidates running for state and local office across the country. The program targets critical races to flip state legislatures and helps candidates win races in the short term while creating a pipeline of leaders to run for higher office in years to come. Winning delegate races in Virginia is key to changing the balance of power in the House chamber, and these candidates will bring a fresh, progressive vision to the state Capitol.
Our slate of Virginia House of Delegates endorsements are the following: Jennifer Carroll Foy in District 2, Chris Hurst in District 12, Danica Roem in District 13, Kelly Fowler in District 21, Josh Cole in District 28, Donte Tanner in District 40, Kathy Tran in District 42, Lee Carter in District 50, Jamaal Johnston in District 60, Karrie Delaney in District 67, Schuyler VanValkenburg in District 72, and Jay Jones in District 89. Additionally, Next Up previously endorsed Justin Fairfax for lieutenant governor.
A video of the press conference is available on PFAW’s Facebook page here.
Terry McAuliffe, Virginia governor:
“In Virginia we have a big opportunity this November to change what our House of Delegates looks like. And it’s clear that we need new, fresh voices in politics more than ever. People For the American Way’s Next Up Victory Fund is working to build the bench of progressive candidates who can strengthen our democracy and reflect the diversity of our nation.”
Michael Keegan, People For the American Way president:
“In order to promote progressive leadership across the country, we need young leaders who can work from the ground up and put in place policies that reflect our shared American values. Next Up was created to help build the bench of winning progressive candidates. And we are doing just that. We are excited to endorse these young, progressive Virginia House of Delegates candidates who will create a more diverse, representative, effective government in Richmond.”
Lizet Ocampo, People For the American Way political director:
“PFAW has a history of helping strong progressive candidates win tight races and supporting youth leadership is a central part of our work. Next Up Victory Fund builds on that work by helping young candidates run for office and, more importantly, win. We are excited to provide resources and support to help these House of Delegates candidates win in Virginia during this critical election.”
Charniele Herring, House Democratic Caucus Chair:
“I am thrilled to stand with People For the American Way as we work to elect more young progressive Virginians. It is more important than ever, as Republicans work to strip women of their reproductive freedom and deny health care for 400,000 Virginians, that all voices are represented in the House of Delegates. There is room at the table for new ideas, and I know that our candidates are ready to take a seat.”
Kathy Tran, candidate for VA House of Delegates District 42:
“I am honored to receive the endorsement of People For the American Way’s Next Up Victory Fund in my campaign for the Virginia House of Delegates. At a time when our nation’s political future seems uncertain, I am proud and humbled to be part of a growing movement of progressive leaders who will bring new voices to our democracy. We need to elect leaders with fresh perspectives to make progress on the issues that matter most to working families like mine, by strengthening our public schools, expanding access to affordable health care, and growing economic opportunity.”
Jennifer Carroll Foy, candidate for VA House of Delegates District 2:
“I am running for delegate to fight for a Virginia that works for all of us. Virginians deserve access to affordable health care, top-quality public education, and solutions to our broken transportation system. I am thrilled to earn Next Up Victory Fund’s support as part of a wave of fresh, progressive candidates running this year to flip the House of Delegates blue.”
Chris Hurst, candidate for VA House of Delegates District 12:
“I am humbled and excited to receive Next Up’s endorsement. Now, more than ever, we need legislators who are not afraid to stand up for and advance progressive policies that will benefit all Virginians.”
Danica Roem, candidate for VA House of Delegates District 13:
“I’m honored to earn the support of the People For the American Way’s Next Up Victory Fund as we work to improve transportation while fighting discrimination here in Virginia. As a lifelong 13th District resident and longtime local reporter, I know we’re our strongest when we work with each other to address our core quality-of-life issues like traffic, jobs, schools and health care instead of singling out and stigmatizing each other. Let’s unite and let’s win Nov. 7.”
Kelly Fowler, candidate for VA House of Delegates District 21:
“I am thrilled to be endorsed by People for the American Way (PFAW), and I want to thank Next Up Victory Fund for their confidence in my campaign to serve in the House of Delegates. It’s an exciting time in the Commonwealth and I am prepared to go to Richmond and fight against right-wing extremism and fight for the progressive values PFAW was founded on. I’m looking forward to our work together!”
Joshua Cole, candidate for VA House of Delegates District 28:
“I am a proud Virginian and I love my state, but I know our Commonwealth can do better. Virginia’s 28th House District needs a representative who will fight to reduce traffic, expand Medicaid, and improve our education system instead of just giving tax cuts to big corporate interests. Now is the time for a fresh direction in Virginia!”
Donte Tanner, candidate for VA House of Delegates District 40:
“I’m honored to receive People For the American Way’s endorsement, and I’m excited to join other great young progressive candidates as part of the Next Up Victory Fund team. As an Air Force veteran, I understand that running for office is about service before self. As delegate, I will serve the district and fight to protect our democracy and Constitution from the extremism we are seeing today.”
Lee Carter, candidate for VA House of Delegates District 50:
“I’m humbled to have the endorsement of PFAW in our fight to empower Virginia’s working families both economically and politically.”
Jamaal Johnston, candidate for VA House of Delegates District 60:
“In order for Virginia to reach her full potential, we must move away from party-centered politics and focus on people-centered politics. I’m honored to receive PFAW’s Next Up Victory Fund endorsement as I work to move Virginia forward.”
Karrie Delaney, candidate for VA House of Delegates District 67:
“I’m honored to earn the endorsement of People For the American Way’s Next Up Victory Fund. I’m dedicated to working with PFAW and rising above partisan politics in Richmond to find innovative solutions that make Virginia the best place to live, raise a family, and start a business.”
Schuyler VanValkenburg, candidate for VA House of Delegates District 72:
“As a public school teacher, I am running to show my students that democracy is not a spectator sport. In order to fight for the change we need in state government, young progressives must get off the sidelines and fight for what they believe in. I want to make sure my students can share the same American Dream as their parents, so I am fighting for a strong public school system, a 21st century economy that works for everybody, and easy access to affordable healthcare.”
Jay Jones, candidate for VA House of Delegates District 89:
“I am thrilled to receive the endorsement of People For the American Way’s Next Up Victory Fund. Our campaign is driven by Millennials and is intensely focused on bringing our voices to the political process. We are excited to work with People For the American Way to bring young, progressive voices to Richmond.”
Justin Fairfax, candidate for VA lieutenant governor:
“I am grateful for the endorsement of People For the American Way’s (PFAW) Next Up Victory Fund and will work with them in the fight for equal justice under the law and defending our Constitution. I am honored to stand with PFAW as they push back on the normalization of bigotry, anti-Semitism and divisiveness. It’s important for advocates, activists and elected leaders to speak out against efforts to divide us. I will always be committed to the values of fairness and equality our nation was founded on, and I’m proud to have PFAW’s support.”
To learn more about the candidates, visit the Virginia Next Up slate online here.
For photos, follow-up interviews, or questions, please email [email protected].
People For the American Way is a progressive advocacy organization founded to fight right-wing extremism and defend constitutional values including free expression, religious liberty, equal justice under the law, and the right to meaningfully participate in our democracy.