The AP has called the first big Virginia race of the night, reporting shortly before 9 p.m. that Democratic state senator Ralph Northam has defeated Republican pastor E. W. Jackson in the Virginia lieutenant governor’s race. (Northam is winning 52.4 percent of the vote to Jackson’s 47.6 with 64 percent of precincts reporting.)
This won’t surprise many: Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli rarely appeared with the candidate, whose history of controversial statements provided much fodder for his Democratic opponent’s ads. The general consensus is that Jackson wouldn’t have been the nominee if the Republican ticket had been decided by a primary instead of at a nominating convention.
“Bishop Jackson worked hard, he was a good candidate, he had a great campaign, and we’re disappointed that the voters of Virginia decided to take another course,” Garren Shipley, communications director for the Virginia Republican party, tells National Review Online. “We think that E. W. Jackson would have made a fantastic lieutenant governor, and we expect to see him run for elected office again.”