RICHMOND — As Democratic lieutenant governor candidate Jody Wagner and attorney general candidate Steve Shannon took the stage, an overwhelming sea of applause enveloped the room as democratic supporters showed their appreciation for the candidates.
“The issues that I have been focusing on are issues that truly affect the public,” Shannon said. “Once we know the facts about these issues, we all have an obligation to address them — and I will do so.”
Supporters commented that if Shannon would head the ticket during the next election, the Democratic ticket might have a chance.
Democratic supporter Imran Chaudhry said the energy shown by last year’s Democrats has been more apparent in the Republican ticket this year.
“If Shannon is head of the ticket next time and he engages in more outreach opportunities, people will actually listen to what Shannon says. Overall, I believe the Republicans had stronger candidates, they had the stronger more outreach-centered ticket,” Chaudhry said.
Wagner said she does not believe the work is over for the Democratic ticket.
“We have too many challenges to face — we need to focus on job creation, education for our children and transportation issues,” Wagner said.
Supporters have had mixed views about the focus of this year’s Democratic ticket.
“Democrats should learn their lesson,” Chaudhry said. “The Republicans had a better outreach program, without a doubt they were more aggressive. Democrats were unable to inspire the base of the supporters.”
Amir Malik, a Democratic supporter, said that Shannon ended up buried because he was a good candidate.
“Since the rest of the Democratic ticket was running away from the Democratic ideals, Shannon was not put in the spotlight,” Malik said.
Wagner said that the Democratic ticket should not give up on current political policies just because the outcome was not as positive as the supporters would have liked it to be.
“We can’t give up on the policies that made us the best-managed state, the best state for business, and the best state to raise a child,” Wagner said. “We have to keep fighting these policies — agreed?”
Shannon said elections are not just about voting in the right candidates for the job, elections involved all citizens of the given state.