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VOTE411 Voter Guide

Virginia Senate District 21

Includes Montgomery County precincts A-1-3, B-1-4, C-3-4, D-5, E-1-3, F-1-2, G-1-2

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  • Candidate picture

    John Edwards
    (Dem)

  • Steven Nelson
    (I)

Biographical Information

What do you believe is the top priority for your district, and what is your plan to address it?

What measures, if any, would you support to ensure the right to vote and election integrity?

Regarding fair redistricting, 1) Do you support the proposal for a Virginia Redistricting Commission and why? 2) If the Constitutional Amendment is adopted, what legislation would you support to implement the Commission?

What solutions would you support to reduce the current level of gun violence in Virginia?

Biographical Information Senator John S. Edwards - As a U.S. Marine, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Virginia, vice mayor of Roanoke and now as senator for the 21st District, John Edwards has dedicated his life to public service. Senator Edwards was born in Roanoke, attended Princeton and UVA law, and is a champion for public schools, higher education, improved transportation, healthcare and creating good paying jobs.
Improvement of I-81 is a top priority. As a member of the I-81 Committee, established by the funding legislation this spring, I will continue to promote urgently needed improvements to I-81. Also, I will continue to work to extend Amtrak to the New River Valley; this has been a priority of mine since I worked hard to bring Amtrak to Roanoke in 2017.
I support early voting, no-excuse absentee voting, and same-day registration, among other reforms. I oppose requirements such as having to produce a voter ID and other voter suppression barriers. The Governor’s package of election reforms I also support.
While I voted for the final version of SJR 306, I continue to have reservations. These reservations include: that the proposed Constitutional Amendment to establish a Commission is impractical; any redistricting plan adopted by the Commission cannot be amended by the General Assembly; and if the General Assembly rejects the Commission’s plan, redistricting defaults to the Virginia Supreme Court, which is not democratically representative of Virginia. I did support amendments that were adopted, such as the Commission having open meetings and all records being open and transparent. I also supported the proposed amendment to prevent partisan redistricting, but that important amendment was not adopted.
My bill to create voluntary background checks at gun shows passed in 2016. With the Virginia State Police now present at all gun shows, we can and should make background checks at gun shows mandatory. I also support local governments having authority to ban guns in local government buildings, and I have introduced similar legislation for Roanoke City. I support banning assault weapons in Virginia.
Biographical Information BA in Public Adm. (city county manager) Minor Econ from Appalachian State University. Went to Harvard University at night part time while working F/T studying Business Adm. and Economics. Primary care giver (2012-13) for my deceased father until his passing and now Primary care giver for my 91 y/o mother. MY GOAL is to make sure we get our fair share of FED MONEY for I-81 and fixing 220S aka Future 73...(a joke) that will be built in 2037 at $3.2B. Make Gov't more efficient and reduce regulations.
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