In Depth Breakdown of Jennifer Boysko’s Victory

img_3597With Jennifer Wexton now in the House of Representatives, there was a special election to fill her old seat in the state senate. Most political analysts would say it’s a “safe Democrat” one, but you never know what can happen in a special election since they usually have low voter turnout and don’t receive a lot of media attention. That being said, the Democrats are still celebrating as Jennifer Boysko received 69.47 percent of the vote on her way to defeating former Republican Delegate Joe May.

For some perspective on the race, the last statewide Republican candidate (including those running for POTUS) to win the 33rd was back in 2009 when Bob McDonnell won it with 59% of the vote. Since then, there have been 10 statewide elections (including two presidential campaigns) and no Democratic candidate has received less than 55% of the vote.

Ralph Northam won the district with 66.51% in 2017, Hillary Clinton won with 61.90% in 2016, Jennifer Wexton won her 2015 race for the senate seat with 56.69%, Mark Warner won with 55.20% in 2014, Barack Obama won with 59.07% in 2012, and Mark Herring won his state senate race with 54.07% in 2011. Plus, it’s worth noting there was a special election for the seat 2014 after Mark Herring became Attorney General and Wexton won the seat with 52.72% of the vote.

There are also eight House of Delegates districts that overlap with the 33rd and only one is represented by a Republican (Dave LaRock in the 33rd House District). Several of the House Districts have recently been flipped though as David Reid (D-86), Karrie Delaney (D-67), and Wendy Gooditis (D-10) are all freshmen. Plus, there’s going to be a special election to fill Jennifer Boysko’s old seat (86th District) and John Bell is running for the state senate in the 13th district this year, so his seat in the House will be open (the 87th). That leaves Ken Plum (D-36) and Kathleen Murphy (D-34) as the only Democrats with districts overlapping the 33rd who have served multiple terms and will be seeking reelection this November.

In local government, all three Supervisor districts in Fairfax that overlap with the 33rd are represented by Democrats and the county chair, Sharon Bulova, is also a Democrat. The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors, however, has a strong GOP majority even though the Chair, Phyllis Randall, is a Democrat. The only other Democrats on the board are Kristen Umstattd in Leesburg and Koran Saines in Sterling.

Geographically, the 33rd District is primarily in Loudoun County with only 26.67 percent of the district’s registered voters living in Fairfax. A lot of people consider the Leesburg area to be the heart of the district — especially since that’s where the district’s last two senators came from. Also, all but seven of the 55 precincts are in 10th Congressional District (the other seven are in the 11th).

In the breakdown below, I separated the Loudoun County precincts into their respective magisterial districts but kept the 10 precincts in Fairfax as one group. For those who are interested, however, it’s worth noting there are two precincts in Hunter Mill, five precincts in Dranesville, and three in Sully.

In all the categories, I provide a little bit of commentary and then show the breakdown of individual precincts for the special election. If you want to see breakdowns of the 2018 Congressional race or the 2017 gubernatorial campaign by precinct, let me know and I can send them to you (the limited space here just made the optics a little funny if you listed out all the results).

You might notice that Boysko out performed both Wexton’s 2018 campaign and Northam’s 2017 gubernatorial campaign in almost every magisterial district. The only exceptions were both Wexton and Northam received a higher percentage in Catoctin and Northam received a higher percentage in Leesburg. In both cases, however, Boysko was still within a point of their totals.

So with all that in mind, here’s how the results breakdown:

Fairfax County (Boysko 76.96%, May 23.04%)

Jennifer Boysko lives in the Herndon area and already represented it in the House of Delegates, so it shouldn’t be surprising that she had a strong showing in the Fairfax portion of the 33rd senate district.

There are three precincts in the 10th Congressional District that are also in both Fairfax County and the 33rd (Brookfield, Franklin, and Carson). Jennifer Wexton won these with 68.07 percent while Jennifer Boysko won them with 78.52 percent, which is more than 10 points higher.

In the precincts that overlap with the 11th Congressional District, Boysko even out performed Gerry Connolly even though he only faced nominal opposition in 2018. Connolly received 76.03 percent in the shared precincts while Boysko received 78.62 percent.

Finally, back in 2017 Northam won these precincts with 73.77 percent of the vote in his race for governor.

  • Frying Pan (Boysko 391, May 96)
  • McNair (Boysko 298, May 38)
  • Herndon #1 (Boysko 615, May 266)
  • Herndon #2 (Boysko 635, May 190)
  • Herndon #3 (Boysko 419, May 139)
  • Hutchinson (Boysko 287, May 42)
  • Coates (Boysko 307, May 32)
  • Brookfield (Boysko 449, May 176)
  • Franklin (Boysko 161, May 84)
  • Carson (Boysko 304, May 120)
  • Absentee (Boysko 239, May 46)

Algonkian (Boysko 66.46%, May 33.44%)

There are 11 precincts in the Algonkian district and about half of them (six) are in the 33rd. Jennifer Wexton won with 62.6 percent of the vote in the 33rd’s Algonkian precincts in 2018 and Northam received 63.67 percent in 2017.

  • River Bend (Boysko 249, May 168)
  • Algonkian (Boysko 261, May 137)
  • Cascades (Boysko 358, May 142)
  • Countryside (Boysko 103, May 44)
  • University Center (Boysko 161, May 50)
  • Galilee Church (Boysko 259, May 159)

Ashburn Magisterial District (Boysko 66.38%), May 33.46%)

The Ashburn magisterial district has 10 precincts and only three of them actually fall into the 33rd senate district. Jennifer Wexton received 60.65 percent of the vote in the 33rd’s Ashburn precincts and Northam received 62.13 percent.

  • Seldens Landing (Boysko 208, May 79)
  • Belmont Ridge (Boysko 438, May 255)
  • Riverside (Boysko 199, May 92)

Blue Ridge Magisterial District (Boysko 80.02%, May 19.97%)

While I live in the 13th Senate District, this is my home magisterial district so I took a personal interest in these precincts. Interestingly, I represented another candidate running in the Democratic primary for the special election at a meeting of the Blue Ridge Democratic Committee and several of the people in attendance didn’t even realize the 33rd had precincts in Blue Ridge. I don’t say this to denigrate those people, but to simply highlight how the state senate isn’t always on everyone’s radar — especially when we’re talking about an upcoming special election.

The Blue Ridge district has seen a fair amount of growth recently and gone from 15 precincts to 19 as many precincts have been split (including the one I live in). Most of the four precincts in the 33rd district from Blue Ridge are in the more eastern portion of the magisterial district.

Jennifer Wexton received 68.68 percent of the vote in these precincts during her 2018 campaign and Ralph Northam won 69.29 percent in the 2017 gubernatorial campaign. Both were over 10 points behind Boysko’s performance.

  • Legacy (Boysko 330, May 125)
  • Creighton Corner (Boysko 289, May 89)
  • Stone Hill (Boysko 348, May 33)
  • Brambleton Middle (Boysko 159, May 34)

Broad Run Magisterial District (Boysko 70.29%, May 29.6%)

Six of Broad Run’s 13 precincts fall within the boundaries of the 33rd senate district. There are several people who might consider running for Supervisor from Broad Run, but as of today (January 10), no Democratic candidate has officially come forward. In a year when a lot of new Democratic candidates are emerging, this is the only magisterial district in Loudoun County that doesn’t already have a candidate for 2019. That being said, Jennifer Wexton received 67.45 percent of the vote in these precincts and Northam received 67.64 percent.

  • Oak Grove (Boysko 107, May 19)
  • Ridgetop (Boysko 98, May 24)
  • Farmwell Station (Boysko 455, May 162)
  • Ashby Ponds (Boysko 373, May 270)
  • Moorefield Station (Boysko 228, May 48)
  • Discovery (Boysko 45, May 27)

Catoctin Magisterial District (Boysko 53.54%, May 46.29%)

With only four precincts in the district, less than a third of Catoctin’s 13 precincts fall within the 33rd. That being said, this was the only magisterial district Jennifer Wexton actually out performed Boysko in. The newly sworn in Congresswoman received 54.13 percent during her 2018 campaign even though Comstock ended up winning one of the precincts (Tuscarora) that Boysko won. As you can see below, however, the Tuscarora precinct has an extremely small number of voters.

Northam essentially ran even with Boysko here as he received 53.70 percent of the vote in these precincts.

It should be noted that Jennifer Boysko only lost two precincts in the entire district and both of them happened to be in Catoctin — Harper Park and River Creek. It’s also worth highlighting that since Wexton and Northam both lost Tuscarora but won Harper Park, River Creek is the only precinct in the entire district that all three Democrats lost.

  • Harper Park (Boysko 155, May 158)
  • Tuscarora (Boysko 16, May 14)
  • Red Rock (Boysko 199, May 88)
  • River Creek (Boysko 272, May 295)

Dulles Magisterial District (Boysko 82.53%, May 14.47%)

Of the 14 precincts in Dulles, only four are inside the 33rd. Jennifer Boysko did extremely well compared to how other recent Democratic candidates have performed in these precincts. Jennifer Wexton, for instance, had a large margin of victory but was still more than 14 points behind Boysko — she received 68.3 percent of the vote. Ralph Northam performed better than Wexton, but was still only at 70.3 percent of the vote.

  • Dulles South (Boysko 0, May 0)
  • Moorefield (Boysko 25, May 2)
  • Carter (Boysko 104, May 28)
  • Rock Ridge (Boysko 249, May 50)

Leesburg Magisterial District (Boysko 61.55%, May 38.4%)

Almost the entire Leesburg district is in the 33rd senate district — only Heritage falls outside its boundaries. With nine precincts in the 33rd, the Leesburg Magisterial District also has the largest number of precincts in the district. Furthermore, it’s been the home to the last two people to hold the seat — Jennifer Wexton and Mark Herring.

Boysko performed right in line with Jennifer Wexton in this district as the Congresswoman received 61.25 percent in 2018. Northam was also right in line with Wexton and Boysko during his 2017 campaign, though he squeaked out a tiny lead with 61.65 percent of the vote.

  • West Leesburg (Boysko 458, May 320)
  • East Leesburg (Boysko 343, May 130)
  • Dry Mill (Boysko 203, May 165)
  • Smarts Mill (Boysko 428, May 313)
  • Cool Spring (Boysko 0, May 0)
  • Brandon Park (Boysko 145, May 71)
  • Greenway (Boysko 204, May 188)
  • Balls Bluff (Boysko 328, May 208)
  • Tolbert (Boysko 331, May 127)

Sterling Magisterial District (Boysko 69.07%, May 30.07%)

During the Democratic primary for the special election, the former chair of the Sterling Democratic Committee was one of the candidates running. She made the argument that someone from this district would be a good person to represent it in the Senate, which makes sense because seven of Sterling’s eight precincts are in the 33rd (only Seneca is outside its boundaries).

Sterling is also one of two magisterial districts in Loudoun with a Democratic county supervisor — Koran Saines. I think it’s safe to say Saines is one of the more progressive elected officials from Northern Virginia, which makes sense because Sterling is a reliably safe Democratic district.

Jennifer Wexton won 68.15 percent of the vote in these precincts and Northam won 68.95. So they weren’t far behind Boysko, but she still received a higher percentage here.

  • Sully (Boysko 261, May 147)
  • Park View (Boysko 227, May 127)
  • Rolling Ridge (Boysko 334, May 65)
  • Forest Grove (Boysko 381, May 219)
  • Claude Moore Park (Boysko 207, May 58)
  • Mirror Ridge (Boysko 269, May 95)
  • Sterling (Boysko 186, May 118)

About Bryan J. Scrafford

Bryan Scrafford is a community organizer based in the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington, DC. Since first becoming involved in Virginia politics during his college days at George Mason University, Scrafford has been a fierce advocate for LGBT equality, economic justice, and other progressive causes. He's involved in several community organizations, including being the state director for Americans for Democratic Action.
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