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Democrats lose House: Divided government returns

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Republicans will gain six seats in the House of Delegates in the 2021 cycle, giving the GOP a 51-49 majority in the lower chamber.

Democrats maintain a 21-19 edge in the Senate, but if history can be a guide here, expect Gov.-elect Glenn Youngkin to offer a Democratic state senator a plum job to throw the balance of power.

You heard it here first.

That door opened with the apparent victory for 63rd House District Republican Kim Taylor in her race with Democratic incumbent Lashrecse Aird.

Taylor has a 1,072-vote lead with four precincts still yet to report, according to the latest update from the Virginia Department of Elections, at 2:15 a.m. Wednesday.

None of the races in the Greater Augusta-Rockingham area were even close.

In the 20th District, which includes portions of Augusta County and the cities of Staunton and Waynesboro, Republican John Avoli easily won re-election in his race with Democrat Randall Wolf, with Avoli receiving just under 64 percent of the vote.

In the 25th District, which stretches from Rockingham County, through Augusta County, then over the Blue Ridge into Albemarle County, Republican incumbent Chris Runion defeated Democrat Jennifer Kitchen, receiving 62.1 percent of the votes.

The biggest win for the Republicans came in the 24th, a gerrymander from hell district that begins in Augusta County, reaches over one mountain range into Bath County, through Rockbridge, then over another mountain range into Amherst.

Ronnie Campbell, the incumbent, received 73.2 percent of the vote in his race with Democrat Sam Soghor.

The closest Democrats came locally was up in the 26th, which includes Harrisonburg and a wide swath of Rockingham.

GOP incumbent Tony Wilt defeated Democrat Bill Helsley with 58.6 percent of the votes.

Helsley won Harrisonburg with 60.6 percent of the 11,000 votes cast in the city, but Wilt won 75.5 percent of the nearly 14,000 votes in the county.

In the 20th, Wolf didn’t win a single locality, even losing in Staunton, which gave Democratic gubernatorial nominee Terry McAuliffe a 3.5-point win.

Soghor, in the 24th, won Lexington – golf clap – but couldn’t do better than 30 percent in any of the counties.

Kitchen, who raised more than a quarter of a million dollars for her campaign, won Albemarle County, but got just 27 percent of the vote in Rockingham and 23 percent in Augusta.

Story by Chris Graham



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