As expected , House Democrats on Saturday unanimously elected Del. David Toscano of Charlottesville as their new minority leader.
Toscano, a lawyer and former mayor who has served since 2006, replaces Del. Ward Armstrong, who lost his reelection bid after Republicans eliminated his largely rural Southside district when they redrew legislative maps.
“We are the party of economic opportunity, job creation and protecting the middle class,’’ Toscano said. “Our caucus will work to develop and implement solutions that will move our commonwealth forward to a better future. We cannot and will not stand idly by as Republican leadership in the House fails to address the challenges we face.”
Del. Mark Sickles of Fairfax, who has served since 2004, was elected caucus chairman, replacing Del. Ken Plum of Fairfax, who decided not to run. Others who had been interested were Dels. Scott Surovell of Fairfax and Onzlee Ware of Roanoke.
“The last two election cycles have been very difficult for our caucus,’’ Sickles said. “In the coming months, I will work with the caucus to develop a comprehensive plan to elect more Democrats to our body, including a rigorous candidate recruitment process.”
At their annual legislative retreat in Richmond, the 32-member caucus also elected Del. Rosalyn Dance of Petersburg vice chairwoman for operations, Del. Jennifer McClellan of Richmond vice chairwoman for outreach, Del. Jeion Ward of Hampton treasurer, Del. Betsy Carr of Richmond secretary and Del. Delores McQuinn of Richmond sergeant at arms.