- The Washington Times - Sunday, October 31, 2004

Virginia’s voters appear bound for the polls in record numbers tomorrow — if this year’s record jump in voter registration and demand for absentee ballots is any indicator.

There are 400,000 more voters on the rolls in Virginia this year than in the 2000 election — an 11 percent increase. Nearly 65,000 of them registered in the final three days before the Oct. 4 deadline.

More than 223,000 people applied for mail-in absentee ballots this year. In 2000, Virginians cast more than 150,000 absentee ballots.

Voters will decide the outcome of 10 of 11 congressional races, and several county board contests.

In Northern Virginia, U.S. Rep. James P. Moran, a Democrat, is seeking to win his eighth term representing the heavily Democratic 8th District. Mr. Moran, 59, faces a challenge from Republican Lisa Marie Cheney, 39.

Mrs. Cheney says Mr. Moran must be ousted from office because he has embarrassed the district with his behavior, including comments last year about the Jewish community and the war in Iraq.

Mr. Moran says his votes are in line with the constituents in his district, which includes Arlington County, the cities of Alexandria and Falls Church and parts of Fairfax County.

Mr. Moran is a member of the House Appropriations Committee, which crafts the federal budget. Mrs. Cheney, who is not related to Vice President Dick Cheney, is a lifelong Alexandria resident who owns a government-relations firm specializing in missile defense.

Activist James T. Hurysz, 57, of Arlington, is running as an independent. A self-employed quality assurance consultant for manufacturing companies, Mr. Hurysz had mounted several unsuccessful bids for the Arlington County Board.

Mr. Moran faced his first formidable challenge in the Democratic primary in June. Andrew Rosenberg, who is Jewish, captured about 40 percent of the vote. Mr. Rosenberg has not returned calls asking whom he plans to endorse in the race.

Rep. Frank R. Wolf, a Republican, faces a challenge from former investment banker James Socas, a Democrat from California, in the heavily Republican 10th District.

Mr. Wolf, 65, who has served 12 terms, says the district needs his experience. He serves on the House Appropriations Committee and is chairman of the House Appropriations subcommittee on commerce, justice, state and judiciary.

Mr. Socas, 38, says Mr. Wolf is too conservative and out of touch with the changing demographic of the district, which includes Clarke, Loudoun, Frederick and Warren counties; the cities of Manassas, Manassas Park and Winchester; and parts of Fairfax, Fauquier and Prince William counties.

Mr. Socas, a University of Virginia graduate, has been criticized in television ads for not owning a home in the state. Mr. Socas, who returned to Virginia from San Francisco last year, rents a home in McLean. Until the spring, he was the minority staff director for the U.S. Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs subcommittee on economic policy.

Rep. Thomas M. Davis III, a Republican, faces two challengers in the 11th District — Ken Longmyer, a Democrat, and Joseph P. Oddo, an independent.

Mr. Davis, 55, has served five terms representing the district, which includes parts of Fairfax County, Fairfax City and Prince William County. He is chairman of the Government Reform Committee.

Mr. Longmyer, 66, is a retired Foreign Service officer. Mr. Oddo, 46, is a self-employed freelance writer who is running as a Green Party independent.

In the 1st District, Rep. Jo Ann Davis, a Republican, is challenged by William A. Lee, an independent. Mrs. Davis, 54, has served two terms in the district, which includes Stafford and Spotsylvania counties.

In the 2nd District, state Delegate Thelma Drake, Norfolk Republican, is running against David B. Ashe, a Democrat. The seat went up for grabs this summer when Rep. Ed Schrock, a Republican, decided he would not seek re-election. If Mrs. Drake wins, her seat in the House of Delegates will become vacant.

In the 3rd District, Rep. Robert C. Scott, a Democrat and the only black member of the Virginia congressional delegation, faces a challenge by former state Delegate Winsome E. Sears, a Republican. Mrs. Sears, who is black, served in the House from 2001 to 2003. The district includes Richmond.

In the 4th District, Rep. J. Randy Forbes, a Republican, is challenged by Jonathan R. Menefee, a Democrat. In the 5th District, Rep. Virgil H. Goode Jr., a Republican, is running against Albert C. Weed II, a Democrat.

Rep. Robert W. Goodlatte, a Republican, is running unopposed for the 6th District seat.

In the 7th District, Rep. Eric Cantor, a Republican, faces a challenge by W. Brad Blanton, an independent.

Rep. Rick Boucher, a Democrat, is challenged by two men for his seat in the 9th District — Kevin R. Triplett, a Republican, and Seth A. Davis, an independent.

In addition to the Moran vs. Cheney congressional race, voters in Arlington will decide on several county races.

F. Landey Patton IV, a Republican, is trying to unseat Barbara A. Favola, the Democratic chairwoman of the Arlington County Board.

The Arlington County School Board has two seats up for grabs.

School Board Chairman E.T. “Libby” Garvey and member Frank K. Wilson are on the ballot, with William S. Barker and Shaun W. Whelden. The race is nonpartisan.

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