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Turpin and Kiggans will face each other in November race to replace Wagner in the 7th Virginia Senate District

State Del. Cheryl Turpin, a Democrat who represents the 85th State House District, poses for a picture with Alex Askew, a former student of Turpin’s who is running in the 85th House District election to replace Turpin. Turpin on Tuesday, June 11, won a primary to become the Democratic nominee in the 7th State Senate District. [John-Henry Doucette/The Princess Anne Independent News]

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE

TOWN CENTER — Cheryl Turpin, a school teacher who flipped the 85th State House District from red to blue two years ago, will try to do the same in the 7th State Senate District after defeating two follow Democrats in a primary on Tuesday, June 11.

But she’ll have to defeat Jen Kiggans, a nurse practitioner and former Navy pilot who won the GOP nomination on Tuesday in a primary by defeating Carloyn Weems, a member of the school board in Virginia Beach, in a close race.

Kiggans and Turpin seek to replace long-serving Frank Wagner, a Virginia Beach  Republican who decided to retire from political life. The district includes parts of Norfolk and Virginia Beach.

Kiggans did not return a call seeking comment. In campaign material, she has said she will focus upon issues such as creating jobs and keeping healthcare costs low.

“These results prove voters are hungry for new leadership,” she wrote in a statement posted to social media following the primary win.

She thanked Weems for a “spirited” campaign. Kiggans won 51.6 percent of the vote in the primary, according to unofficial returns reported by the Virginia Department of Elections, as of early Wednesday, June 12.

Jen Kiggans [Courtesy]

Turpin won 58.8 percent of the vote, defeating Susan Hippen, with 27.5 percent, and Kim Howard, 13.7 percent, according to unofficial returns. Hippen is a retired Navy master chief any Howard a retired Navy intelligence officer.

Late Tuesday, Turpin celebrated her primary victory at McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood & Steaks at Town Center. 

Turpin said she felt confident that she can win the seat and help Democrats take control of the state senate, now in the hands of Republicans by a 21-19 margin.

“Nobody knows how to flip a Trump district like I do,” Turpin said, alluding to her 2017 victory in the 85th State House District.

Turpin said some people did not expect her to become a delegate, given the partisan demographics of the 85th. 

Turpin said she will focus upon issues such as education and affordable housing during the coming campaign.


© 2019 Pungo Publishing Co., LLC

The Independent News

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