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Dance Wins Dem. Senate Primary Over Preston; Aird Takes 63rd House District Democratic Primary

June 10, 2015 , Prince George Journal

PRINCE GEORGE COUNTY, VIRGINIA – While Tuesday’s election may not have impacted every single county and voting district in the Commonwealth, the Republican and Democratic primaries play a key role in establishing who will be on the ticket for the upcoming state house and senate election in November.


In Prince George and Dinwiddie Counties, voters went to the polls to choose what Democratic candidate would be representing the party during the fall’s 16th Senate District and 63rd House District election.


It would be long-time politician and former City of Petersburg mayor Rosalyn Dance carrying over 63 percent of the vote in Tuesday’s primary, defeating fellow democrat Joseph Preston. A closer look at the numbers shows Dance outpaced Preston in most of the local precincts, averaging over 60 percent of vote in Chesterfield, Dinwiddie, Hopewell, Prince George, and Richmond.


The race between Dance and Preston was far closer in Petersburg, where Dance won 52 percent of the vote in the city, defeating Preston by a slim margin of 140 votes.


In contrast to the Senate, the five-candidate race for the 63rd House District saw Lashrecse Aird winning over Larry Brown, Gerry Rawlinson, Atiba Muse, and W.H. “Mouse” Jones, Jr., all vying to take over the seat vacated by Dance as she transitioned to the state senate.


Aird won 40 percent of the vote, receiving nearly 2,000 votes. The next closest candidate was Brown with 1,038 votes and Rawlinson with 1,024 votes. Locally, Aird carried approximately 37 percent of the vote in Prince George and Dinwiddie, where both registrar’s offices reported low turnout at area polling places.


Prince George County Registrar Katherine Tyler explained that only 489 registered voters came out to vote in the democratic primary, which is a steep drop when compared to a general election, where 9,081 voters turned out for last November’s United State Senate race between Mark Warner (D) and Ed Gillespie (R). In an interview, Tyler said, given that Tuesday’s election was a candidate-selecting primary, it was slow at most polling places.


“Everything went smoothly overall during the primary,” said Tyler. “We did get a lot of calls about why some voters’ precincts weren’t open Tuesday. They were not open because they were not inside a district holding a primary.”


In neighboring Dinwiddie County, Registrar Linda Brandon echoed Tyler’s comments, noting that one of Dinwiddie’s voter precincts had less than 12 voters the entire day. Even with the low turnout, Brandon said that everything went smoothly, even as the county rolled out new voting machines.


“We used the scanners Tuesday and the residents loved them,” Brandon said. “It was a much quicker process and citizens were pleased to be able to used them.”


According to Brandon, with the new machines, voting officials started getting end-of-day calculations just 30 minutes after polls closed. She added that the registrar’s office will be hosting workshops over the summer for the public where they can come and practice vote on the new machines.


Candidate Name  |       Party    | Votes (Percentage)
Rosalyn R. Dance  Democratic 4,968 (62.05%)
Joseph E. Preston  Democratic 3,039 (37.95%)


Candidate Name  |       Party    | Votes (Percentage)
Larry D. Brown, Sr. Democratic 1,038 (21.12%)
Lashrecse D. Aird  Democratic 1,975 (40.18%)
Gerry J. Rawlinson Democratic 1,024 (20.83%)
Atiba H. Muse Democratic 644 (13.10%)
W. H. “Mouse” Jones, Jr. Democratic 234 (4.76%)


Copyright 2015 by Hermes Publications | Election Results by Virginia Department of Elections