Voters choosing new Southwest Virginia senator in Tuesday special election

Voters choosing new Southwest Virginia senator in Tuesday special election

Democrat Laurie Buchwald (left( will face Republican Travis Hackworth in a special election on Tuesday for the 38th Senate District. Voters in Southwest Virginia are heading to the polls Tuesday for a special election to choose a state senator to succeed Ben Chafin, who died earlier this year from complications from COVID-19. Travis Hackworth, a businessman and member of the Tazewell County Board of Supervisors, is seeking to retain the seat for the Republican Party against Democratic challenger Laurie Buchwald, an obstetrics-gynecology nurse practitioner and former Radford City councilwoman. The massive 38th Senate District stretches from Radford to Big Stone Gap and includes all or part of nine counties and two cities. It’s a bright red district in which former President Donald Trump won 77% of the vote in November, but Democrats are investing time and money in the race. “I believe strongly we should have contested races, I believe that women should be in office and I believe Southwest Virginia needs a voice to champion what’s important to us,” Buchwald said. Buchwald is focusing her campaign on issues that she’s hoping she can attract voters from across the political spectrum: expanding health care opportunities, increasing teacher pay and improving public education, expanding broadband and navigating the region through the COVID-19 vaccination and recovery effort. “In the last five or six years, the focus from the other side has been on one or two issues,” Buchwald said, referring to hot-button issues like guns. “We need to be talking about […]

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