Jennifer McClellan’s historic win in Virginia
Jennifer McClellan makes history in her senatorial win for Virginia’s 4th Congressional District. Not only will she represent the late Democratic representative Donald McEachin, but she will become Virginia’s first black Congresswoman. An accomplishment among many milestones.
Her win blew Republican Leon Benjamin out the water in Virginian votes. According to her election reports, she dedicated much time and money to her campaign. McClellan’s grassroots reputation has a way of getting things done and she thanks her team. By all means, McClellan prepared her team with an emphasis on communication and resources, but they also “make it easy to build a very fast campaign.”
The importance of being a force in progressive change began as a young girl for McClellan. Growing up in Virginia under activist parents, she learned it all starts with bringing people together. A common cause supported behind a great leader puts progress into motion. Her biggest growth came from the seventeen years of fighting for justice in the Virginia General Assembly. There, she fought for abortion rights that eliminated mandatory ultrasounds and TRAP laws.
To take it back further, she positioned herself every year in the state legislation after practicing law. Her first win would be in 2006, claiming a seat in the Virginia House of Delegates. More opportunities would come for her as she became the first pregnant delegate to participate in a Virginia legislative session. Because of her drive to stay involved in the community, she elevated to higher political rankings. The Democratic National Committee (DNC) appointed her a seat coupled with chairs at the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus and the Virginia Senate in 2017.
Paving the way
2021 would be another groundbreaking year for McClellan, pushing the Voting Rights Act of Virginia to the forefront while running for state governor. The bill passed into law, taking away voter suppression and intimidation tactics, but she lost in the governor’s race. If she did win, she would have became the first female governor of Virginia; moreover, first black female governor in the U.S.
As of now, she is honored for her victory and understands her responsibility. Her motivation is to pave the way for other black women, so she is not the last.
Featured Image by Jennifer McClellan website