Virginia State Senate Candidates Support ICE Ban Repeal

Several candidates for the Virginia State Senate have replied in the last week to the Driving Force Action candidate survey. The survey asked candidates whether they would support Governor Glenn Youngkin’s plan to repeal the state’s internal combustion engine (ICE) ban if elected this November. Below is a sampling of some of the excellent responses from the candidates.

Senate candidate Mark Vafiades (R), who is running against David Marsden (D) in Senate District 35, replied that he is 100% with Driving Force Action and is a strong proponent of repealing the ban. In fact, Vafiades has posted his thoughts on the issue in the video below:

David Henshaw (R), running against Barbara Favola (D) in District 40, told us that he’s opposed to the Virginia ICE ban and would also reverse the Clean Economy Act, mandating that Dominion Energy Virginia and American Electric Power produce electricity from 100 percent “renewable sources” by 2045 and 2050 respectively.

Philip Hamilton (R), running against R. Creigh Deeds (D) in District 11, also supports repealing  the ICE ban, noting that Virginia simply doesn’t have enough power plants to cover the drastic increase in energy demand that would result from a state ban on internal combustion engines. He rightly points out that the state’s environmental laws should never be tethered to the laws that another state (California) passed.

Deeds, Hamilton’s opponent in the November election, refused to say one way or the other whether he would support repeal, telling DFA that he doesn’t fill out questionnaires and his 32 years of votes in the legislature will give voters a better indication of the sort of legislator he would be.

So… We decided to check on one of those votes. No surprise, Deeds voted for the 2021 legislation requiring the Commonwealth of Virginia to adopt the California Air Resources Board’s mandates.

Source: Virginia Legislative Information System

Gregory Moulthrop (R), running against Suhas Subramanyam (D) in District 32, shared his fellow candidate Hamilton’s point of view that the Virginia legislature abdicated the job of writing and passing laws by voting to adopt “what California does” pointing out that Virginia’s government should never vote to simply follow another state’s actions.

Ken Reid (R), running against Saddam Azlan Salim (D), replied that there is no way Virginia can achieve the 35% electric vehicle requirement by 2026 and that he and millions of Virginians choose to drive older combustion engine vehicles.

Survey responses show that even some Democrats, traditionally more supportive of the state’s ICE ban are changing their tune. For instance, Jade Harris (D), running against Christopher Head (R) in District 3, doesn’t believe the 2021 ICE ban was necessary to address environmental concerns and would vote to repeal the ban.

DFA will continue to share responses from Virginia candidates in the weeks ahead, but the responses received to date are encouraging.

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