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The Arlington County Democratic Committee plans on holding several days of in-person voting, if health conditions allow, to select its School Board endorsee for the November general election.
“[Health] conditions should be better,” party chair Jill Caiazzo said in announcing plans for caucus voting, which had been approved by the party steering committee. But if they are not, voting could move to an online-only format, as was the case in 2020.
Caucus voting would take place over several as-yet-undetermined days in May. “We’re scouring the county to find the best possible venue we can,” Caiazzo said.
The seat up for grabs in 2021 currently is held by Monique O’Grady, who was elected in 2017 by first knocking off incumbent James Lander in the Democratic caucus and then winning the general election in a three-candidate field.
Neither O’Grady nor any other candidate has formally launched an election bid in front of the Democratic Committee. Democrats have set March 1 as the filing deadline.
Virginia law considers School Board seats as nonpartisan positions, so political parties cannot use state-run primaries to select their candidates. But in Arlington, Democrats long have held a caucus to determine their endorsees (the term used in place of nominees).
Currently, all five School Board seats are occupied by those who won a Democratic caucus en route to the general election. The last non-Democrat to serve on the School Board was Dave Foster, who served two terms more than a decade ago.
If only one candidate files to run in the caucus, it will be canceled and the contender likely will be anointed at a regular meeting of the party. If three or more candidates file, the party will use “instant-runoff” voting to select its candidate.