Arlington County Board member Barbara Favola has decisively won the acrimonious race for the 31st District state Senate seat. With all precincts reporting, Favola has captured 65 percent of the vote to Jaime Areizaga-Soto’s 35 percent. Favola will face a well-funded Republican challenger, Caren Merrick, in November.
Del. Adam Ebbin, meanwhile, has squeaked by Alexandria City Councilman Rob Krupicka in the three-way race for the 30th District state Senate seat. With 98 percent of precincts reporting, Ebbin has 39 percent of the vote to Kupricka’s 36 percent and Arlington school board member Libby Garvey’s 25 percent. Ebbin will face Republican hopeful Timothy McGhee in November.
Alfonso Lopez will be the 49th District’s next House of Delegates member, succeeding the victorious Ebbin. Lopez defeated Stephanie Clifford 66 percent to 34 percent with all precincts reporting. Lopez will be running unopposed in the fall.
Finally, Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney Theo Stamos will be getting a bigger office. Stamos handily fended off defense attorney David Deane in the race for Commonwealth’s Attorney in Arlington. Stamos captured 82 percent of the vote to Deane’s 18 percent. Stamos does not have a challenger in the general election.
Arlington elections officials say that 10.3 percent of the county’s active registered voters cast a ballot during today’s election.
“Not so bad for [a] predicted slow primary day [with an] earthquake,” officials said via Twitter.
Voting in Arlington is proceeding as normal, despite today’s earthquake.
All voting centers are open, according to county elections officials, but voting has been moved outside at the George Mason University voting center due to the university’s decision to close all of its buildings. Some voting centers were briefly evacuated after the quake, but polls will close at 7:00 p.m. as scheduled.
“We should be fine… there have been no reports of any issues at all,” said Arlington County Registrar Linda Lindberg. She noted that the only people calling to ask about keeping the polls open later have been the candidates themselves.
Lindberg said overall turnout is still estimated to be about 7 to 10 percent of active registered voters.
“Turnout is about what we’ve expected so far,” she said.
According to Lindberg, turnout is expected to be higher in the 31st state Senate District, the battleground of a contentious Democratic primary.
Earlier: Traffic is moving at a crawl on northbound I-395, from Alexandria to the 14th Street Bridge.
Commuters heading from Virginia to the District following today’s earthquake have jammed the highway, causing major delays. The southbound GW Parkway is also reported to be slow heading toward interchange with I-395.
Traffic is relatively light on Route 50, I-66 and Columbia Pike as of 5:10 p.m.
(Updated at 5:00 p.m.) A 5.8 magnitude earthquake has hit the D.C. area.
Reports of the ground shaking came in from throughout the county, the region and the eastern seaboard. The epicenter of the quake was located between Charlottesville and Richmond, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.
“Be advised, we just suffered an earthquake,” Arlington County 911 dispatch said over police and fire radio channels, just after the quake hit at 1:51 p.m. So far, no major damage or significant injuries have been reported in Arlington.
Multiple reports of building evacuations throughout the Rosslyn-Ballston corridor led police to caution about pedestrians in the roadway. Vornado has made the decision to close all its building in Arlington, including the county’s office building at 2100 Clarendon Boulevard, according to Arlington County spokeswoman Mary Curtius. The building is staying open for election workers.
Numerous gas leaks are being reported. More than 250 Dominion customers in Arlington are without power as of 5:00 p.m.
The Arlington Emergency Operations Center has been activated, Curtius said. Traffic is heavy on I-66 and I-395 in Arlington as workers head home for the day.
The county’s 911 center was “flooded with calls” after the earthquake, Curtius said. Most of the calls were anxiety related, and no injuries directly related to the earthquake have been reported. Additional emergency personnel were called in and 911 calls are dying down now, Curtius added.
There are reports of minor damage to parts of old buildings, like brick chimneys, according to Arlington County Police spokeswoman Det. Crystal Nosal. She said the Arlington County courthouse and police department were evacuated while the Fire Marshal checked out gas lines to the building. During the evacuation, many emergency personnel were standing outside the police station on 14th Street with radios in hand.
Firefighters are checking for damage to overpasses. All flights out of Reagan National Airport were suspended while runways are checked for damage, officials said. Flights are now operating, but with delays. As of 2:45 p.m., Terminal A of Reagan National was being evacuated due to an odor of gas. Terminal B and C are still open.
The Pentagon was also evacuated after the quake, according to news reports. NBC News is reporting that several water pipes burst in the building, flooding the floor below.
Arlington Public Library says that books fell off shelves, and multiple residents have told us about small items falling on the ground during the temblor.
According to county election officials, today’s voting will continue as normal, with polls closing at 7:00 p.m. All voting centers are open, but voting has been moved outside at the George Mason University center.
Cell phone service was jammed shortly after the quake as residents called loved ones. Service is back up but spotty, according to various accounts on Twitter.
A fully-loaded dump truck came to a grinding halt at the intersection of N. Glebe Road and Randolph Street this morning after its left front wheel detached from the axle.
Nobody was hurt, but the accident did block Randolph Street for at least a half hour, as a heavy wrecker truck was brought in to move the disabled dump truck. A large gash was visible in the pavement, showing where the truck started grinding into the street after the wheel fell off.
The incident happened as the truck was turning from northbound Glebe onto Randolph, across from the Harris Teeter and the Ballston mall parking garage.
Arlington has placed seventh in this year’s Money magazine ‘Best Places for the Rich and Single’ list.
“Home to the Pentagon and several other government agencies, Arlington is filled with policy wonks, analysts and researchers,” the magazine said of dating scene in the county. “Bar hop in the Clarendon-Court House neighborhood, where happy hour, pub quizzes and karaoke nights make playing the field fun and easy.”
Manhattan Beach, Calif. placed first on this year’s list, Tyson’s Corner placed second, Herndon placed 20th and Alexandria placed 23rd. The list was published in the September 2011 issue of Money.
Last year Arlington placed 11th.
Flickr pool photo by Michael T. Ruhl
Rep. Jim Moran issued a statement last night about rebel advances during the ongoing fighting in Libya.
Last night, the indomitable power of freedom carried the Libyan people within reach of ending Moammar Gaddafi’s cruel reign. Now, the dictator must surrender to the International Criminal Court, and face justice at last. The United States and the broad alliance we have brought together to help Libya’s Transitional National Council and oppose Gaddafi’s regime should now focus on supporting a peaceful transition to democracy.
I commend President Obama and his administration for the decisive leadership that has brought us to this day. By halting Gaddafi’s murderous assault on Benghazi on March 17, the United States made the coming victory possible. Gaddafi’s power has been steadily eroded by allied military action and by diplomatic, logistical and financial support European, Arab and African states. The Transitional National Council overcame many obstacles and setbacks in their drive to oust the regime, and it is encouraging that the Berber communities of Western Libya – long persecuted by Gaddafi – played a crucial role in the final approach to Tripoli.
Indeed, from the beginning of this uprising, Libya’s people have been its driving force. Their resilience should serve as a model to other oppressed people. As President Obama has said, the future of Libya is in the hands of the Libyan people, and they will be able to count on U.S. support to create their country’s first democracy.
(Updated at 9:10 a.m.) The polls are open until 7:00 tonight in Arlington. That should give residents plenty of time to cast their votes in the four primary races on the ballot. As a recap, here’s a list of who is running, along with links to their candidate essays.
- State Senate (30th District)
- State Senate (31st District)
- House of Delegates (49th District)
- Commonwealth’s Attorney
If you’re a registered voter, when are you planning on voting, if at all?
Election Day in Virginia — Voters are going to the polls in Virginia today to vote in a rare mid-August primary. In addition to the date, which was pushed back thanks to this year’s redistricting process, this year’s election is unique because it features “more Latino candidates on the ballot than ever before in General Assembly races… running for both Democratic and Republican nominations.” Arlington’s 51 polling places will be open from 6:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. today. [NBC Washington, Arlington County]
O’Leary Predicts High Turnout — Arlington County Treasurer and amateur election prognosticator Frank O’Leary believes that about 11,850 votes will be cast today, seven times the turnout of the 2007 primary. O’Leary based his projection on the number of absentee votes cast this year, which is higher than usual. [Sun Gazette]
Wedding Interrupted by Tow Truck — An Indian wedding procession in Ballston was interrupted over the weekend when the truck and trailer that transported the groom’s white horse to the area was towed from a parking lot. According to a witness, wedding organizers eventually talked the tow truck driver into dropping the truck. [ARLnow Forums]
Flickr pool photo by Philliefan99