News and notes from Reston (tm).

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Faith in Democracy Restored, Sort Of: $255 Per Vote, Fancy Signs, Not Enough To Buy Election

Walter Alcorn decisively won the shockingly expensive primary for the Democratic nomination for the Hunter Mill seat on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, garnering nearly 50 percent of the vote (which sounds great, until you realize he got just 5,385 votes in an election that represented an existential debate about the character of local representation in a fast-growing community and then sadness ensues). Laurie Dodd came in a close(ish) second with 2,847 votes, followed by Shyamali Roy Hauth with 1,746 votes. Comstock employee and banner enthusiast Maggie Parker got 1,010 votes, which, given the nearly $260,000 she spent on this election, works out to more than $255 per person who actually voted for her. Primary losers aren't allowed to run in the general election, so this all but assures that Alcorn will be elected to succeed Cathy Hudgins in November.

Between the massive amounts of money all of the candidates spent -- which, with the turnout only roughly half of previous low-turnout Democratic primaries in Hunter Mill, actually works out to more like $50 per person who showed up to vote in what wound up being the highest turnout in the county, and the hilarious First Amendment violations in one of the growing number of private "public" spaces in our community, it's hard to see this as a huge victory for the democratic process, but we'll take it.

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