Editorial: Virginia needs Marques Jones

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by Brandon Jarvis

The first time I met Marques Jones was for an interview last summer not long after he announced his candidacy for state Senate. I walked away from that meeting telling myself and my wife that he should be the future of Virginia politics. Marques is the type of person that speaks with passion and a raw authenticity in regards to honestly helping the people who need it.

Jones is the former Chairman of the Henrico County Democratic Committee. He announced last year that he was stepping down from that position to focus on a state Senate run in the 12th district. (Henrico & a small part of Hanover). Marques campaign for months, but with drama unfolding in the 12th after a last-second entry from a Henrico Delegate, the party began to slightly fracture with supporters choosing sides.

In an effort to try and help the party heal by providing one less ‘side’ in this fight, Marques recently announced that he was suspending his Senate campaign.

The spirit of activism fueled this campaign from the start. It was in the Virginian with MS who rode his wheelchair across the Capitol advocating for Medicaid expansion. It was in the woman lobbying to raise the larceny threshold and do away with private prisons. It was in the teacher who just wanted to be able to pay the bills doing their job – making a positive impact on the community. That spirit will always be a driving force for me – but unfortunately, it will not be pushing me towards the Virginia Senate in 2019.”

Marques is the son of two public school teachers, he has been a longtime healthcare advocate, and he has worked behind the scenes in recent years to help the blue wave sweep across Henrico. (House of Delegates sweep in 2017, Abigail Spanberger, etc.) This is all after being diagnosed with M.S. several years ago, which helped lead Jones to a life of healthcare advocacy. After putting all of this work in to help Virginia find more progressive values and candidates to match, Marques once again put the party and the movement ahead of himself by dropping out of the race.

This is why I believe that Marques Jones is the perfect fit to fill the vacant Democratic nomination for the Tuckahoe district on the Henrico Board of Supervisors. Marques can use this position to help drive the policies of Henrico down a road that benefits the most citizens in the County. Marques is not someone that just wants to seek a powerful position for the sake of it. He has shown time-after-time, that the progressive ideals and values he wants to see from elected officials are more important than his own personal gain. This is the type of elected representative that Virginia needs, no matter the party.

Marques Jones should not be on the sidelines.

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