[Updated to include more data, comments from Elizabeth Bennett-Parker.]
Running for two offices at the same time proved politically catastrophic for Del. Mark Levine, who on June 8 lost both his long-shot quest for lieutenant governor and his re-election bid.
In the 45th District, Levine was ousted by Alexandria Vice Mayor Elizabeth Bennett-Parker, who will move on to the general election against Republican opposition in the Democratic-heavy district that is centered on Alexandria but also includes slivers of Arlington and Fairfax counties.
Bennett-Parker received 9,310 votes, or 59.3 percent, to 6,402 for Levine in complete but unofficial results reported by Virginia Public Access Project.
Bennett-Parker did best in the 17 precincts in the city of Alexandria, rolling up 60 percent of the vote there. But she also garnered majorities in the six Arlington precincts (53 percent) and three Fairfax County precincts (55 percent).
During the campaign, Bennett-Parker rolled up endorsements from local leaders, something Levine struggled to match. The Sun Gazette’s endorsement went to Bennett-Parker.
Though not past the finish line until November, Bennett-Parker clearly has her eyes focused on ultimate victory.
“I look forward to working with all of the Democratic nominees to win in November, and to representing all of the district in Richmond,” she said in a statement after the results were known. “Special thanks to our incredible team of volunteers who made phone calls, knocked on doors, talked to your neighbors, and handed out campaign literature. This is a grass-roots campaign.”
As with his bid for renomination, Levine’s quixotic quest for lieutenant governor also ended badly. He finished a distant third among six candidates, receiving 11.3 percent of the vote despite self-funding his effort to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars. The race was won by Hala Ayala, who came away with 37.4 percent of the overall vote.
Levine suffered the same fate as Del. Lee Carter, who lost re-election to his Prince William County seat while making little impression in his bid for the Democratic nomination for governor, a race won by Terry McAuliffe. Carter received 2.8 percent of the vote for governor, finishing fifth out of five.
Levine was first elected in 2015, and will remain in legislative office until the end of the year. As a result, he will participate in what is expected to be a special session likely to be called by Gov. Northam later in the year.