That’s the minuscule share of the vote that Corey Stewart received in Prince William County on Tuesday in his ill-fated bid for the U.S. Senate against incumbent Tim Kaine.
Two out of three.
That’s the ratio of Prince William voters who chose a candidate other than the person who has been chairman of their Board of County Supervisors for 12 years. That’s the definition of repudiation.
That’s Corey Stewart’s lousy record in running for statewide office. He failed in bids to win the Republican nomination for lieutenant governor in 2013 and governor in 2017 before this year’s unsuccessful run for the Senate.
The numbers don’t lie. Stewart won about 41 percent of the vote statewide on Tuesday, but significantly less than that in his home county – the people who know him best. His run for yet another statewide office distracted his focus from Prince William and – worse – put a bad spotlight on the county.
Yes, Prince William voters have spoken, and we can only hope that Stewart hears the message. He is up for re-election as board chairman next November. It’s pretty clear that local voters agree with us that his shtick has grown old. Already he faces significant and well-regarded opposition for re-election, not only from Democrats but also from within his own party.
Stewart said Tuesday night (in between using profanity and further demonstrating why he is unfit to be leader of a progressive and diverse county) that he hasn’t decided whether to run for re-election. We think Prince William voters spoke clearly on Tuesday. They’re as tired of Stewart as we are. It’s time for a new chairman of the Prince William Board of County Supervisors.
On a brighter note, congratulations to Dr. Babur Lateef for winning the special election for chair of the Prince William School Board, and kudos to Alyson Satterwhite for running an outstanding campaign. Both of these candidates demonstrate the kind of leadership we wish we saw in our board of county supervisors chairman.
Since taking over as interim school board chairman this spring, Lateef has avoided the political infighting and drama that marked the short-lived tenure of his predecessor, Ryan Sawyers. We hope and trust that will continue and that the school bureaucracy will become more responsive and accountable to parents, students and teachers.
In the 10th Congressional District, which includes parts of Prince William, Manassas and Manassas Park, incumbent Republican Barbara Comstock was the night’s first victim of the anti-Trump suburban-driven “blue wave.” She was followed, more deservedly so, by Dave Brat from the Richmond area’s 7th District and Scott Taylor from Virginia Beach’s 2nd.
We hope that Democrat Jennifer Wexton, who handily defeated Comstock, learns from her predecessor’s style. Comstock excelled at being present throughout the sprawling district and representing the needs of her constituents. Wexton should do the same.