Loudoun County 2019 General Election | Democrat Party | Suhas Subramanyam 2

Democrat Suhas Subramanyam takes photos at the Democratic campaign party in Brambleton after being elected to represent the 87th District in the Virginia House of Delegates on Election Day in 2019. 

First-year Del. Suhas Subramanyam (D-87th) and veteran state Sen. Emmett Hanger Jr. (R-24th) have joined forces to co-chair the new Commonwealth Caucus designed to increase bipartisanship during the new General Assembly session in Richmond.

State Sens. John Bell (D-13th) and Jill Vogel (R-27th), both of whom represent portions of Loudoun County, are members of the caucus. (See full membership below.)

In a news release, the caucus leadership said one of their top priorities will be structural election reform.

Speaking to that issue, Subramanyam told the Times-Mirror: “Electoral reforms is pretty broad and includes, but is not limited to redistricting, making it easier to vote, absentee voting, campaign finance laws and [the] referendums process. So we mean it in the broadest sense of the word, but one thing to note is that the group has not taken an official position on any of these things ...”

Caucus representatives said they hope to adopt practices from both new and veteran members, facilitate conversations and debates, find consensus on issues important to Virginians and provide a new mechanism for legislators to find bill co-patrons across both chambers.

The development of the caucus comes at a time in which several controversial bills have been filed focused on adopting gun reform changes, ratifying the Equal Amendment Rights and providing localities the authority over war memorials and monuments.

In November, Democrats took majority of both the House and Senate.

“This newly created caucus will increase bipartisanship by facilitating conversations between legislators not only across party lines but across chambers. Virginia has always set the course for our nation's democracy, and now it can be a leader in giving everyone a voice regardless of party and uniting our divided politics,” Subramanyam said in a prepared statement.

Hanger Jr. added, “The Commonwealth Caucus is a member-driven bipartisan group in the Virginia General Assembly that incorporates representatives from both chambers. The purpose of this caucus is to gather members together on a regular basis to build camaraderie across the aisle, and to discuss and collaborate on important policy and legislation, including electoral reform as one of the priorities of the caucus.”

Late in the first day of session last week, the caucus had 14 members, with seven from each party.

In November, Subramanyam became the first Indian American and Hindu American to be elected to the Virginia state legislature. He represents parts of Prince William and Loudoun counties.

The delegate said he's looking forward to serving his constituents.

“I hope to make them proud and fulfill some of the critical promises I made when I started this journey: fully funding our schools, making health care more affordable, continuing the economic success in Northern Virginia, keeping our communities safe, addressing climate change, and working tirelessly for constituents in need” Subramanyam said in a prepared statement.

Founding members of the Commonwealth Caucus:

-Sen. John Bell (D-13th)

-Del. Robert Bloxom (R-100th)

-Del. Glenn Davis (R-84th)

-Sen. Adam Ebbin (D-30th)

-Sen. Emmett Hanger, Jr. (R-24th)

-Del. Dan Helmer (D-40th)

-Del. Sally Hudson (D-57th)

-Sen. Jennifer Kiggans (R-7th)

-Del. Martha Mugler (D-91st)

-Del. Sam Rasoul (D-11th)

-Del. Suhas Subramanyam (D-87th)

-Sen. Jill Vogel (R-27th)

 

(11) comments

jke

4 of the members are republican lite, Davis, Hanger, Vogel and Helmer.

ReasonableVoice

More like Republican smart, the rest are Republican dumb.

ReasonableVoice

Not to mention your lack of literacy is showing, Helmer is a Democrat.

Jeanne T

Bi-partisanship -- like diplomacy -- is highly overrated. In order for there to be bi-partisanship, there must first be civility. And in order for there to be civility, one must learn to be civil. It also means allowing for diversity of thought (the true diversity). It also means, for example, not referring to Second Amendment supporters as children and "mentally ill" when you think the mic isn't on (as happened in a recent public hearing in NoVA), especially when you have no mental health credentials to even make such a diagnosis (very irresponsible since the same ones saying these things are pushing for "red flag" laws).

But I'll give member of this caucus credit for at least trying (and that's not saying much).

RandomName2019

Do you honestly think that Republicans have been losing because of their overwhelming bi-partisan natures? If anything, their heavy handed approach in dealing with those who disagree with them has ushered in their defeat.

BobOhneiserEsq

How about starting with modifying the "DILLON" status of Virginia so counties like Loudoun can control more of what is needed for supporting LCPS such as the ability to allow some advertising on school buses etc.

RandomName2019

You seem oddly focused on this concept. Rather than just repeating it, could you provide examples where home rule has replaced Dillon rule and how it's been beneficial? From what I've seen, home rule is just a way of over complicating the laws and ordinances that affect people and businesses.

Jeanne T

"their heavy handed approach in dealing with those who disagree with them has ushered in their defeat."

I doubt that. You cannot please the Left or garner their approval simply by throwing a pinch of incense their way in compromise. The Left will only hate you more. They don't care. There is no room on the Left's playground for dissenters.

RandomName2019

That's actually kind of amusing given what a dirty word "compromise" seems to have become to many hard-line Republicans. Your blog is a good example of the distorting echo chamber that helps drive such extremist beliefs and pushes away people.

As a moderate, I've found that there's no place for me in the Republican party. For all your assertions that there's no room for dissenters on the "Left", Democrats willingness to allow anyone into their tent is what has historically held them back.

That you have the audacity to say that the "Left" is uncompromising, while insisting that you will compromise on nothing, is astonishingly tone deaf.

Jeanne T

"Your blog is a good example....."

What blog? Tell us.

Jeanne T

"That you have the audacity to say that the "Left" is uncompromising, while insisting that you will compromise on nothing"

Now where did I state I will compromise on nothing?

And I'm still waiting for your answer about my supposed "blog". I don't have one. So why are you lying?

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