Game Over? Race for Virginia Lt. Gov. Features Candidate with $95,000 Tax...

Game Over? Race for Virginia Lt. Gov. Features Candidate with $95,000 Tax Problem

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Attorney Justin Fairfax

IS THE PRIMARY RACE FOR VIRGINIA’S LT. GOVERNOR OVER? On Friday, April 14, the Richmond Times Dispatch reported that candidate for Lt. Governor, Susan Platt, had a multi-year unpaid tax bill close to $100,000. The tax bill went unpaid for over 5 years. It was paid shortly before Platt announced she was running for Lt. Governor of Virginia.

RELATED: How outsider Justin Fairfax broke through the Democratic Party in bid for lieutenant governor

“Susan Platt, a Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor, and her husband faced a federal tax lien in 2011 for failing to pay nearly $100,000 in tax debt. The lien was released in May 2016 after the Platts paid the amount, according to court records in Fairfax County,” read the Times Dispatch story. 

The Democratic Party establishment in Virginia made great efforts to run someone against Justin Fairfax, a former Assistant U.S. Attorney and campaign co-chair for Sen. Mark Warner, who is African American, for reasons that remain unclear. A campaign to recruit Hillary Clinton booster Adam Parkhomenko ended with Parkhomenko deciding not to run. The establishment then turned to Susan Platt, a long time lobbyist who has made most of her lobbying money from one particular client: tobacco giant Altria.

Ironically, the Republican favorite in Virginia for Governor is also a tobacco lobbyist. Platt is running a campaign focusing heavily on being a historic first. She reminds stump audiences constantly she would be the first female Lt. Governor is Virginia’s history. 

In the race for Virginia Lt. Gov., Justin Fairfax is competing is one of the only African Americans on a statewide ballot in 2017. The former Assistant U.S. Attorney is running an active and energetic campaign. Fairfax’s run for Lt. Governor of Virginia is his second statewide run. He barely lost a race in 2013 to be Virginia’s Attorney General against former State Senator Mark Herring. Fairfax has also won every local straw poll held in Virginia this year, in several case by substantial margins.  

Retired U.S. Department of Justice official Gene Rossi is also a candidate for Lt. Governor.

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Lauren Victoria Burke
Twitter: @LVBurke / Lauren Victoria Burke is an independent journalist who analyses politics and justice reform. She created, a blog that covers the work of African American members of Congress, in 2009. Ms. Burke has also been a staffer for the Senate Democratic Policy Committee and Director of Communications for Rep. Andre Carson (D-IN). She has had a very diverse career in politics and media and appears weekly on NewsOneNow with Roland Martin. She has also appeared on Hardball with Chris Matthews, Politics Nation with Al Sharpton and Up with Steve Kornacki on MSNBC. She is also a contributing writer for and Ms. Burke was born in the Bronx, New York and grew up on Long Island. She holds a B.A. in History from The American University. E-mail: Instagram: LVB325.