Aliscia Andrews, the Republican nominee in Virginia’s 10th Congressional District, has spent most of her campaign trying to villainize Jennifer Wexton. She’s repeatedly tried to paint her as someone who supports violence and opposes the police. Instead of painting a positive portrait of her own background for voters, the constant theme in her campaign mailers has been painting Wexton as an extremist.
The latest example of this theme comes from a video put out by a right wing super PAC that paints Democrats as violent left wing extremists. The video featured footage of masked people acting violently before showing Andrews carrying weapons of war with an announcer saying she’s “ready to take Capitol Hill.” It went on to claim she was just one of several “red state warriors” who were “packing some serious heat” while campaigning.
Even in the best case scenario, this is far from a peaceful message. Instead, many community members have raised serious concerns about the ad and suggest it encourages right wing violence.
While she didn’t directly discuss the ad’s contents, Phyllis Randall, the Chair of the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors, did feel like the ad was dangerous enough that she needed to address it.
“I haven’t talked about Jennifer Wexton’s election,” Randall said in a social media post. “Obviously I strongly support Jennifer and I’ve never met Ms. Andrews. I appreciate her service as a Marine and was happy to just stay quiet on her. But Ms. Andrews participating in this video disqualifies her from holding any elected office. Ever…EVER.”
“So now it’s not just a matter of voting for Congresswoman Wexton, it’s also voting AGAINST Ms. Andrews,” the Chair added. “There is a difference. One is support, the other is a message. Ms. Andrews, we are better than this foolishness. Take a seat, in fact get four so you can all sit the heck down.”
The 10th Congressional District covers portions of western Fairfax County and then makes its way out to the border with West Virginia. While it has gradually been bluer and bluer over the years, it had been represented by Republicans in the House of Representatives for decades until Rep. Jennifer Wexton won the seat back in 2018.
Not too surprisingly, Rep. Wexton’s tended to follow the trend of the district by being a moderate Democratic who’s concerned about really making a difference in the district. She received a fair amount of attention when she was sworn into Congress by putting a trans rights flag outside her office door, for instance, but she’s also said she has some concerns about Medicare for All … something many in the Democratic Party’s base would like her to support. Her website instead addresses healthcare by highlighting how she actively supported the expansion of Medicaid in Virginia, has fought for access to mental health care, and sponsored the Health Savings for Families Act in 2019.
Wexton won her race rather solidly when she received 56.1% of the vote over incumbent Barbara Comstock, but Republicans weren’t eager to leave the race uncontested this year since freshmen members of Congress are often considered vulnerable to defeat. So after a four way Republican primary, the GOP nominated Aliscia Andrews for the 2020 campaign.
After Andrews received the nomination, it appears as though the Republican Party and its allies have decided their only path to victory would include trying to tear down a moderate Democratic incumbent. It appears as though that hasn’t been successful, however, as polling conducted in October showed Rep. Wexton with a 22 point lead. Even if there somehow was some serious last minute changes to the race, it’s next to impossible for someone to overcome a 22 point deficit in the polls at this point in the race.