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ArlingtonPoliticsChallenger to Beyer asks Democrats to hear her out

Challenger to Beyer asks Democrats to hear her out

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An intra-party challenger to U.S. Rep. Don Beyer (D-8th) kicked off her campaign Feb. 2 with a singular plea to Arlington Democrats.

“Give me a chance,” Victoria Virasingh asked during a kickoff speech before the Arlington County Democratic Committee, launching a decidedly uphill bid to unseat an incumbent who seems to have his position locked up tight.

An Arlington native, Virasingh – who did not level any criticism at Beyer or even mention him by name in her remarks – said her goal was to create “a community that is rich and thriving and has opportunity for all of us.”

“The American Dream . . . is becoming harder and harder to access,” she said. “I believe in giving hard workers a chance. I’m ready to make the American Dream accessible to all of us.”

Beyer, Virasingh (and any other Democratic candidates who may materialize) will face off in the June 21 Democratic primary. The candidate-filing deadline is April 7.

Virasingh received a polite welcome from the Arlington County Democratic Committee, but most in the room probably already had concluded that the race’s result is a foregone conclusion.

Beyer previously had served as Virginia’s lieutenant governor and as U.S. ambassador to Switzerland and Liechtenstein – never forget Liechtenstein – when in 2014 he easily won primary- and general-election races to succeed the retiring Jim Moran in the 8th District.

The 8th District includes all of Arlington and the cities of Alexandria and Falls Church, as well as a portion of Fairfax County. Legislative redistricting approved earlier this year made some changes to the composition of the district, but left it largely recognizable.

Whether in its old configuration or its new, the 8th District is a Democrat stronghold.

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