The Daily Press released the first of its endorsements for the season Sunday in two Senate contests, the 1st and the 6th. In both races, the newspaper endorsed the incumbent Democratic senators: John Miller and Ralph Northam.
The editorial board seemed to be impressed with the willingness of both to not only talk about bipartisanship but actually engage in it. Of Miller, the board wrote:
I think that assessment is accurate.Conservative Democrats are nothing new in Virginia politics.
The 6th senate district stretches to Mathews County, which is included in the circulation area of Daily Press. In endorsing Northam, the newspaper said:
Like his colleague Mr. Miller, Sen. Northam is a member of the centrist Commonwealth Caucus. He has bucked his state senate Democrat leadership on several issues, including the GOP-supported judicial appointments in Norfolk and Virginia Beach mentioned earlier. In addition, Mr. Northam co-sponsored the governor’s transportation package, which included $3 billion in bonds to fix roads, in direct opposition to his senate caucus.
Perhaps the most interesting thing to me in reading the endorsements was what the board said about the Republican opponents. They obviously liked 1st district challenger Mickey Chohany – he is, after all, quite personable – and encouraged him to “stay involved” in politics.
On the other hand, they essentially considered 6th district challenger Ben Loyola as a candidate in the wrong race, citing his “passions” for federal issues. But they called him to task for signing the no-taxes pledge.
Video from the Miller/Chohany forum is available here. Northam and Loyola will be meeting this Wednesday in a League of Women Voters-sponsored forum. The event is at 6:30pm at the Diehn Fine and Performing Arts building on the campus of ODU.