As post-election analyses continue emerging from Tuesday’s off-year voting, there is some encouraging news coming out of Loudoun County, Virginia: Buta Biberaj, the controversial district attorney backed by liberal mega-donor George Soros who was extremely lenient on criminals while aggressively prosecuting worried parents, has been narrowly defeated by her Republican challenger, Bob Anderson.
Biberaj is probably most widely known for her appalling conduct after two high-profile sexual assaults committed by a transgender-identifying male student at Loudoun County high schools. While the district administration was failing to properly notify parents and alert them to the potential danger after the first disturbing attack occurred, Biberaj declined to promptly file any criminal charges against the male student assailant – a questionable decision that ultimately allowed him to return to class where he proceeded to sexually assault another female student again.
Her reprehensible behavior then further deteriorated. When an understandably angry Scott Smith, the outraged father of the initial sexual assault victim, loudly and aggressively confronted Loudoun County school board members at a public meeting over their negligent handling of the assaults, he ended up bloodied by security personnel and then faced outright charges of “disorderly conduct” filed by Biberaj’s own prosecutor’s office in apparent retaliation for his speaking out.
Fortunately, Virginia’s Republican Governor Glenn Youngkin has since stepped in to pardon Smith, which has reportedly greatly angered Biberaj. In the aftermath of the assault cases, she spent months very publicly attacking and mocking Smith and his family repeatedly on social media platforms.
So Biberaj’s poor character judgment and questionable ethics were already well-established locally even before the election. And Loudoun County voters also strongly resented her decision directing prosecutors in her office to summarily drop thousands of pending misdemeanor criminal cases earlier this year – a move that allowed numerous repeat offenders to go free and contributed directly to noticeable rises in area shoplifting, reckless driving, and other quality-of-life crimes as petty criminals realized they could target local residents with impunity knowing Biberaj had their backs.
Despite being massively outspent financially by Biberaj’s campaign war chest funded heavily by outside liberal donors, Republican challenger Anderson was able to secure just enough crossover support from disgusted Democrats and Independents tired of the skyrocketing crime and ideologically-driven prosecutions to narrowly unseat her in Tuesday’s upset election.
Some interesting lessons exist for Republicans buried in the local Virginia results – even in an increasingly blue region like Loudoun County. The outcome shows Democrats can lose substantial support from their own party base when viewed as going radically soft on prosecuting crimes. And it also illustrates that the parental rights backlash remains a potentially winning issue for Republicans able to tap into it – even in fairly liberal strongholds. While GOP Governor Youngkin undoubtedly had a rough election night statewide on balance, the Loudoun results suggest his education agenda emphasizing parental empowerment over official overreach continues resonating with many Virginia voters.
Author: Scott Dowdy