“It’s always tough to beat an incumbent,” said University of Mary Washington political science professor Stephen Farnsworth. “Herring has spent years building up the kind of record needed to win a Democratic primary, and that’s one of the key reasons that he prevailed.”
“Candidates of different backgrounds are helpful in connecting with a wider range of voters,” said Stephen J. Farnsworth, a political science professor at the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg.
“If incumbents are defeated, that would create greater challenges in particular swing districts,” said Stephen Farnsworth, director of the Center for Leadership and Media Studies at the University of Mary Washington.
There’s a straightforward explanation for Democrats’ increased interest in running for state office. “With a majority in Richmond, a lot of Democrats are inclined to think the office is worth having,” says Stephen Farnsworth, a professor of political science at the University of Mary Washington and an expert in Virginia politics.
“President Trump has been the most effective glue holding Virginia Democrats together for years, and his efforts to stay a central part of the conversation as a former president creates an environment where that glue will hold together any fractures within the party,” he said.
It’s a tactic that might deliver for the GOP in some places, but not so much in urban and suburban areas, said Stephen Farnsworth, a political science professor at the University of Mary Washington.