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Marine vet, Democratic Socialist, Lee Carter announces candidacy for governor

lee carter
Lee Carter

Northern Virginia State Del. Lee Carter formally announced his candidacy for the 2021 Democratic nomination for governor on Friday.

Carter, 33, is an interesting cat – a veteran of the United States Marines who served in the Middle East and Mediterranean, an IT guy specializing in the repair of cancer therapy equipment, and, oh, yeah, he’s also a self-proclaimed Democratic Socialist.

His first foray into Virginia politics was a run at the 50th House District seat held by the then-Republican House Majority Whip, Jackson Miller, in 2017.

Campaigning on a platform emphasizing single-payer healthcare and campaign finance reform, which earned him catcalls from Miller, a 12-year incumbent whose campaign distributed a mailer comparing Carter to Vladimir Lenin, Joseph Stalin and Mao Zedong, he won in an upset, and by a solid, nearly nine-point margin.

Now in his second term in the House of Delegates, Carter has introduced legislation to reform the workers’ compensation system, allow teachers to strike, repeal the anti-worker “right to work” law, legalize cannabis, end cash bail, and abolish the death penalty.

Among Carter’s bills that the current governor, Ralph Northam, has signed into law are a ban on strip searches of children, the establishment of worker cooperatives as legal entities in Virginia, and a $50/month cap on copays for insulin products, which goes into effect today.

“For too long, we’ve listened to career politicians and pundits tell us that there is no other way,” Carter said in his launch video. “But no more. In this primary we can finally pick a governor that will fight for the rest of us.”

“For the teachers and nurses. For shipbuilders and students struggling to make tuition. For everyone with a stack of bills on the kitchen table waiting to get paid. I’m running for governor so the rest of us can finally get what we need and deserve.”

Story by Chris Graham

augusta free press
augusta free press