Date set for special election for 4th District, candidates emerge

Gov. Glenn Youngkin issued a writ of election on Monday declaring the date for the seat.
Published: Dec. 12, 2022 at 11:43 AM EST
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - The special election to fill the 4th District House seat is set for Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2023.

Gov. Glenn Youngkin issued a writ of election on Monday declaring the date for the seat, which was previously held by Donald McEachin, who died in November.

The last date for candidates to file is Dec. 23.

The seat, left open by Congressman Donald McEachin’s death, is favored by Democrats.

“This is a case of organizational politics at its best or its worst. The two candidates will be trying to get the maximum number of people to this firehouse primary,” said Larry Sabato, UVA Center for Politics Executive Director.

One person making it official Monday afternoon was State Delegate Lamont Bagby. Surrounded by supporters, he made the announcement at a community center in Henrico County that bears his name.

He will likely face democratic challenger Jennifer McClellan. The state senator is expected to make an official announcement Tuesday morning.

Meanwhile, at his campaign kickoff, Bagby said he’s spoken with McEachin’s family and is confident he can lead.

“I’m running to continue the legacy. I’m running to make sure that we continue to do the work on education, focus on voting rights, focus on running. We ran predatory lenders out of Virginia; now it’s time to run them out of America,” said Lamont Bagby, (D) Candidate for VA-04.

Virginia's 4th District for the U.S. House of Representatives.
Virginia's 4th District for the U.S. House of Representatives.(Virginia Board of Elections)

On the Republican side, Leon Benjamin says he’s running for the seat. You may recall he ran against McEachin in November. On election night, he only received about 35% of the vote. Benjamin says he’s running again because of his commitment to the district.

“We have plenty of stuff to do in this very short time, and we are all hands on deck, and we are asking for everyone’s prayers and their help,” said Leon Benjamin, (R) Candidate for VA-04.

Sabato also says a slim majority for Virginia Democrats in the state senate could be used as a talking point against McClellan, especially with abortion legislation looming.

Early voting for this special election will start on Jan. 6, 2023.

Information regarding candidacy requirements can be found here.

This is a developing story and will be updated.