Let us start by saying that all five candidates to succeed retiring delegate Al Eisenberg are good Democrats. We suspect that any of them would represent Arlington and the views of Arlingtonians ably in Richmond.
We like Miles Grant because he is the "greenest" of the five. Miles headed up Arlingtonians for a Clean Environment, a local grass roots group that has done a lot to promote a green Arlington. He also has a blog, The Green Miles, devoted to environmental issues. Miles has also been endorsed by the Sierra Club. Miles will bring a truly well-informed voice to the table on environmental issues pending in Richmond.
At the same time, Miles has views on other issues that accord with those of the majority of Arlingtonians--liberal on social issues, but favoring fiscal soundness.
The other four candidates are Patrick Hope, Alan Howze, Adam Parkhomenko and Andres Tobar.
Hope is the candidate of the Arlington Democratic Party insiders. That's another way of saying he's a bit of a hack--he's done the Dem Party thing in Arlington and now thinks it's "his turn." We haven't been impressed with Hope as a candidate. One of the things we like about Miles is that he retains his independence from the party machinery.
Adam Parkhomenko has emerged as a bit of a favorite in the race. He worked hard on Hillary's campaign in Virginia. We don't necessarily see that as a plus given the way Obama trounced Hillary in the Commonwealth and in Arlington. Nothing against him, but he seems awfully eager. Maybe too eager, as when his yard signs started appearing in road medians four months before the primary, a violation of Arlington rules on campaign signs. Either Parkhomenko didn't know the rules--a bad sign for someone wanting to be a delegate--or he ignored the rules for his own benefit--a much worse sign.
Alan Howze works for IBM--a place where we have good friends--and previously worked as Gov. Warner's political director. He knows his way around, but his campaign has been a bit lackluster.
Andres Tobar is President of the Virginia Coalition of Latino Organizations. We don't know much about him, but frankly he would bring a needed perspective to the General Assembly.
All in all, however, we're most impressed with Miles Grant, who has run a good campaign, made effective use of technology to reach out, and whose record on environmental/energy issues is impeccable. Our vote is for Miles.