Spotlight on House District 57: Match up between Gibson and Owen

Spotlight on House District 57: Match up between Gibson and Owen
Published: Oct. 4, 2023 at 10:07 AM EDT|Updated: Oct. 4, 2023 at 1:08 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Her name recognition went through the roof overnight. Reports of online sex tapes pushed Susanna Gibson and the race for House District 57 into the limelight.

“As a nurse practitioner, I know better than anyone that politicians have no place making decisions about women’s bodies and their healthcare,” said Gibson, the Democratic candidate.

Gibson, speaking to NBC12 prior to the revelation, would not agree to a new interview. The mother of two says writing reproductive freedoms into law is a top priority, along with gun safety legislation, hoping to curb violence.

“Like safe storage, closing loopholes, keeping guns out of the hands of violent criminals, domestic abusers and stalkers especially,” said Gibson.

Gibson also says her opponent is too extreme on several issues, including abortion access. As for her own debacle, the candidate released a lengthy statement.

“This is an illegal invasion of my privacy designed to humiliate me and my family. It won’t intimidate me and it won’t silence me. My political opponents and their Republican allies have proven they’re willing to commit a sex crime to attack me and my family because there’s no line they won’t cross to silence women when they speak up. They are trying to silence me because they want to silence you, and I won’t let that happen. My opponent and his allies know that the people of this district are on our side on the issues, so they’re stooping to the worst gutter politics. There’s too much at stake in this election and I’ll never stop fighting for our community.”

“I feel terrible for her children. I can’t imagine what they’re going through right now,” said David Owen, the Republican candidate.

Owen spoke to NBC12 after The Washington Post story dropped. The Republican says his campaign had nothing to do with the leak, and that he’s focused on his own campaign.

“As far as whether it disqualifies her or not, that will be up to the voters in the district,” said Owen.

Owen, a retired civil engineer and builder, says education and safety are the main concerns for voters, but the economy is the number one issue.

“They’re concerned about what they’re paying for prices for groceries, prices for gas, and we will have the conversation about people going in spending $100 and walk out with one little bag of groceries,” said Owen.

If elected, Owen says he would also like to see more options for students to get a good-paying job right out of high school, bypassing a four-year college and the debt that could come with it.

“Also, my background in the construction industry, I see the need for more career and technical education and if we can grow that,” said Owen.

According to the Virginia Public Access Project, based on redistricting, the race for House District 57 is a toss-up because it’s competitive.