HENRICO, VA (WWBT) – It was an upset for the Henrico history books.
Democrat Shannon Taylor, who joined the race late for commonwealth's attorney, won over former republican state Delegate Bill Janis, who had been favored to win, and republican nominee Matt Geary. Taylor received 24,698 votes (approximately 45%) to Janis's 20,811 (38%). Geary finished a distant third with 8,808 (16%).
Shannon Taylor took phone calls and hugs; almost too many to count...a surprise ending that capped off a very nervous evening.
She defeated Matt Geary, who began campaigning in 2009, and Bill Janis, who left his seat in the House of Delegates.
Taylor's victory was an outcome few saw coming.
"Now that it's here, it's like, it's amazing!" said Taylor.
Taylor's victory as a democrat was rare for a county that so often votes for the GOP. It's possible she would have lost, had there not been a republican and former republican splitting the GOP vote.
"I do recognize that and, of course, I am very thankful for that," she said.
The Janis campaign set up a small hotel ballroom for the expected victory that never happened. Instead, in this tiny office space, democrats packed shoulder-to-shoulder, happily celebrating an extraordinary result.
"It's not about politics, it's about experience, and it's about being ready on day one," Taylor said.
Taylor takes over January first for Wade Kizer, who decided not to seek re-election.