|Del. Tag Greason has raised more than three times the campaign cash for the general election (nearly $150,000) than his Democratic challenger, Liz Miller (more than $43,000).|
For four years Republican state Del. Tag Greason has served as the representative for the House of Delegates 32nd District that spans through Ashburn and Potomac Falls in eastern Loudoun County.
In that time, Greason's championed well-received legislation that requires schools to carry an extra EpiPen for students with severe allergic reactions, mandates health insurers cover autism and implements simple 'A-F grading' for public schools.
But the Republican's name has also been attached to more controversial measures, including votes in favor of “personhood” legislation and the invasive trans-vaginal ultrasound bill – both of which are viewed by progressives as infringements on a woman's power over her health care.
It's these votes by the conservative that led Democrat Liz Miller to announce a 32nd District candidacy over the summer; Miller said then she felt a moral imperative to make sure Greason had a challenger.
“People want government out of their bedrooms, and they want government to help them get to work on time and get back home on time,” Miller said.
A software developer in her professional life, Miller has long been a pro-choice advocate and an impassioned canvasser for various Democratic candidates. She previously served on the Loudoun Community Services Board and is a current member of the NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia Foundation.
Miller is the wife of former Democratic Loudoun County Supervisor Stevens Miller.
On her campaign website, Miller sums up her political beliefs by saying: “The short version is that, if you like President Obama’s agenda and you plan to vote for Terry McAuliffe, you will probably like my agenda.”
Though she's never held elected office before, the Democrat points out that neither had Greason
On transportation, Greason has said he supports the Silver Line project, though he opposed attaching special projects for specifics regions to the comprehensive state budget. In December 2012, Greason went far enough to call the Silver Line a “pet project.”
“ … I guarantee you next year someone else is going to have their pet project that is going to cause them to hold the budget hostage and we will quickly become Washington D.C.,” Greason said. “And that is the worst thing we can possibly do.”
This year, Greason was one of several local Republican lawmakers who supported the historic transportation funding reform legislation.
“There was no doubt in my mind what I thought the right vote was,” Greason, a vice president of sales for Quality Technology Services in his day job, said.
Speaking from a business perspective, Greason explained his vote for the transportation bill by saying Virginia's roads have for years lacked adequate investment. He said the state's business-friendliness ranking has dropped several spots in recent years primarily because of the failing transportation system.
“In the end, it was an easy vote,” he said.
Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act is another point of dissension between Greason and Miller.
Miller supports expansion, saying it will save the commonwealth money and improve care for a larger pool of citizens.
“We need to have everybody covered. The number one reason for bankruptcies is illness,” Miller said.
Greason opposes opening up Medicaid to hundreds of thousands of more individuals until strict reforms are implemented.
Responding to his critics on social issues, Greason said he's not a crusader on either side of the spectrum. He explained his “personhood” vote by providing a theoretical scenario; Greason said the bill would've allowed for a drunk driver who caused a wreck and killed an unborn baby, but not the mother, to be charged with some form of manslaughter.
The Republican incumbent was unopposed in 2011, and he won his initial campaign in 2009 by 15 percent over Democrat David Poisson. Greason has raised more than three times the campaign cash for the general election (nearly $150,000) than Miller (more than $43,000).