GOP Keeps Control of Virginia Senate
Del. A. Benton “Ben” Chafin Jr., R-Russell, won a special election Tuesday for the Southwest Virginia seat formerly held by Sen. Phillip P. Puckett, which means Republicans will maintain control of the state Senate.
Chafin easily defeated Democrat Mike Hymes, a Tazewell County supervisor, and independent Rick Mullins.
Chafin’s victory gives Republicans a 21-18 edge in the state Senate. That means the GOP will continue to lead the chamber if Democrats hold the Richmond-area seat of retired Sen. Henry L. Marsh III, in a Nov. 4 special election.
Chafin’s victory means Gov. Terry McAuliffe could face legislative obstacles in both chambers. Republicans hold about two-thirds of the seats in the House of Delegates.