GOP Candidates Share Views

Lt. Governor Hopefuls Make Final Area Pitch

Posted: May 11, 2013

Del. Scott Lingamfelter (back) talks about family values during a Valley Family Forum event Friday at the Wood Grill Buffet in Harrisonburg. Lingamfelter, former state Sen. Jeannemarie Davis (center middle) and Sen. Steve Martin (right) were among five candidates seeking the GOP nomination for lieutenant governor who attended. (Photo by Preston Knight)
HARRISONBURG — A week away from learning their fate, several candidates seeking the Republican nomination for lieutenant governor made their final local campaign pitches on Friday.
 
None of those pitches was a curveball.
 
Five of the seven candidates vying for the GOP nomination spoke during a forum at Wood Grill Buffet. The Valley Family Forum sponsored the event.
 
In attendance were former state Sen. Jeannemarie Davis of Fairfax; Sen. Steve Martin, R-Chesterfield; Corey Stewart, chairman of the Prince William Board of Supervisors; Chesapeake minister E.W. Jackson; and Del. Scott Lingamfelter, R-Prince William.
 
Northern Virginia businessman Pete Snyder and Susan Stimpson, chairwoman of the Stafford County Board of Supervisors, were unable to attend.
 
The state party will select a nominee May 18 in Richmond. About 30 local delegates who will vote at the convention attended Friday’s event.
 
Gaining separation among the crowded field has been a difficult task for the candidates, and it’s hard to tell how much Friday helped. They each spoke about the importance of defining life as beginning at conception and marriage as between a man and a woman, and the need to grow school choice in Virginia.
 
“I never thought in my life that [faith, family and freedom] would be as in jeopardy as they are today,” Lingamfelter said. “Family is God’s plan for a world he envisioned. …  I believe in my heart of hearts, God’s going to bring judgment on this nation.”
 
Jackson said: “We’ve got a lot of people in this culture shaking their fist at the almighty God. We can’t be a blessed nation like that.”
 
Presides Over Senate
 
The lieutenant governor presides over the 40-member Senate, which has particular importance in the chamber’s current configuration because it is evenly split between Republicans and Democrats. That’s led to a number of tie-breaking votes the last two General Assembly sessions by Republican Bill Bolling, Virginia’s current lieutenant governor.
 
Bolling, who began then ceased a campaign for this year’s GOP gubernatorial nomination, is not seeking re-election.
 
Davis said the next lieutenant governor should have experience serving in Richmond. On that note, she corrected Stewart, who said one of his first goals would be to reorganize the chamber in conservative Republicans’ favor.
 
That reorganization won’t occur until after the next Senate election in 2015, Davis said.
 
“You have to understand the rules of the Senate,” she said.
 
Stewart still has experience, though: He repeatedly noted that he leads a county with more than 400,000 people, and proudly said he has helped to keep abortion clinics from moving in.
 
“At some point, leadership means getting stuff done,” Stewart said.
 
Martin said he’s fought the abortion issue for 40 years, but it is only one of many ongoing battles for Christians. “Christians are the ones that are under attack; no other faith [is],” he said.
 
Contact Preston Knight at 574-6272 or pknight@dnronline.com


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