The seal of Virginia in front of the Capitol building in Richmond. (Petula Dvorak/The Washington Post)
Columnist

Before anyone in Virginia considers messing with women again, take a moment to look at the Old Dominion’s official seal: A female warrior standing triumphant, spear in one hand, sword in the other, grinding her heel into the chest of a vanquished man splayed beneath her.

The only thing missing is the transvaginal probe in the guy’s hand.

Lady Virtue slaying tyranny was created in 1776 and actualized on Nov. 6, 2018, when women dominated Virginia’s midterm elections and helped Democrats win back the House of Representatives.

Welcome to revenge, boys, six years after Virginia became a national laughingstock as a cabal of male legislators in its House of Delegates tried to enact government-sponsored transvaginal probes.

Women responded.

Three Democratic women helped flip the U.S. House on Tuesday night, defeating Republican incumbents who had ruled over deep-red Virginia territories.

Northern Virginia’s affluent 10th District voted for Democratic state Sen. Jennifer T. Wexton over another woman, Republican Rep. Barbara Comstock. Not a total shocker there — Wexton is popular, and that part of Virginia is a blue-tinged Washington suburb.

But in Hampton Roads, voters ousted Republican incumbent Scott W. Taylor and elected Elaine Luria. She’s a retired naval commander; he’s a former Navy SEAL whose campaign was tainted by scandal.

And in Richmond, voters were finally sick of Rep. Dave Brat’s creepily obsessive and arguably sexist Nancy Pelosi hate-fest and replaced him with Abigail Spanberger, a former CIA operations officer.

(Can I also say they’re all moms, speaking of wombs?)

This comes a year after women totally reshaped the old-boy network of the Virginia General Assembly, taking 38 of 140 seats in that election.

The remarkable wave of women (nope, not going to do it, not going to call it a pink wave) in this state is especially delicious because of Virginia’s notorious attempts to put women in the wayback machine. And the votes were as epic as a Taylor Swift revenge song.

Before last year, the agenda of the majority-male (it had been 82 percent) legislature appeared as though wombs were public enemy No. 1. Lawmakers were debating transvaginal ultrasounds, contraceptives, granting personhood to an embryo and whether to ax mandatory HPV vaccines for girls.


Abigail Spanberger greets the crowd after ousting Republican Rep. Dave Brat in Virginia’s 7th Congressional District. (Julia Rendleman/The Washington Post)

The pre-abortion transvaginal ultrasound proposal was so absurd that one of the dudes advocating for it was put on the deep freeze in his own marital bed when the topic came up. Del. David B. Albo (R-Fairfax) thought this was so hilarious, he brought a boombox to the Assembly floor and blasted wacka-wacka-wonk music when he told the story.

He said his wife called it a night — even though the red wine was popped and his kids were in bed — when the probe debate ended all smooth moves.

Ha. Ha. Joke’s on him. His seat is now held by Del. Kathy Tran (D-Fairfax), who nursed her 1-year-old daughter in the swearing-in ceremony last year after Albo retired.

And let’s not forget Virginia’s own “Minister of Private Parts.”

Former delegate Robert G. Marshall (R-Prince William) made a career caring about Virginians’ nether regions.

Marshall’s legislative record read like a bathroom wall. He questioned the intelligence of women who use long-term contraception, argued that some incest was “voluntary,” joined the whole transvaginal ultrasound caper, worried that U.S. troops would catch sexually transmitted diseases if they had to serve alongside gay colleagues, and called porn a public health hazard.

Remember, he’s the guy who said he’s from the party of small government and personal freedom.

Never mind. His obsession over where people pee was his last.

In the middle of his fetishistic crusade to legislate where transgender people are allowed to relieve themselves, the man who happily called himself “Virginia’s chief homophobe” was ousted from his 13-term perch in office by a transgender woman, former newspaper reporter Danica A. Roem (D- Prince William).

Pretty sweet.

So maybe it’s time to retire the state’s famous slogan — Virginia is for lovers — and replace it with a new one: Virginia is for women.

Twitter: @petulad