Special election set for Jan. 11 to fill Virginia House seat

December 17, 2021 GMT

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A special election has been set for next month to fill the seat of a Democratic member of the Virginia House from Norfolk who is resigning his seat.

Virginia House Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn issued a writ of election Friday initiating a special election that will be held Jan. 11 to fill the seat vacated by Del. Jay Jones in the 89th House District. The deadline to file for candidacy for the vacancy is 5 p.m. on Dec. 22.

Jones announced Thursday that he would step down by year’s end. He mounted a serious but unsuccessful primary challenge against incumbent Mark Herring in the race for attorney general this year and was seen as a rising star in the Democratic party. The 32-year-old Jones says he expects to continue to stay involved in politics, but he wants to prioritize time with his family as he and his wife prepare to welcome their first child.

The district is heavily Democratic — Jones won reelection in November with nearly 80% of the vote. The GOP will have a slim majority in the chamber when it convenes in mid-January, regardless of whether Jones’ seat is filled by then.