Justin Fairfax Biography
Justin Fairfax (Justin Edward Fairfax) is an American attorney and politician serving as the 41st Lieutenant Governor of Virginia since 2018. He is a member of the Democratic Party, in the 2017 election, he defeated Republican nominee Jill Vogel. Fairfax is the second African American elected statewide, following Douglas Wilder, who was elected to the same position in 1985 and became Virginia Governor in the 1989 election.
Justin Fairfax Age
Justin Fairfax is 39 years old as per 2018 born on February 17, 1979, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Justin Fairfax Wife
Justin Fairfax is married to Cerina W. and the two lives in Annandale, Virginia, with his wife and two children
Justin Fairfax Early life and career
Justin Fairfax was five years old when he moved with his family from Pittsburgh to northeast Washington, D.C. One of four children, he graduated from DeMatha Catholic High School in Hyattsville, Maryland, where he was senior class president. In 2000, Fairfax then graduated from Duke University with a degree in public policy. During the 2000 presidential campaign of Al Gore, Fairfax was a briefing coordinator for Tipper Gore, in the campaign’s Nashville, Tennessee office. He was also a staffer for Senator John Edwards of North Carolina, in the senator’s Washington office.
After serving on the staff of the Senate Judiciary Committee for two years, he attended Columbia Law School, where he was a member of the Columbia Law Review. Fairfax joined the John Kerry presidential campaign over the Summer of 2004, as a body man for John Edwards. In 2005, Fairfax served as law clerk to Judge Gerald Bruce Lee of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. In 2010, Fairfax worked in the Washington office of the law firm WilmerHale before joining the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. He worked for two years as a federal prosecutor in Alexandria, Virginia. Fairfax served as deputy coordinator of the Northern Virginia Human Trafficking Task Force during this time.
For the first time in 2013, Fairfax ran for public office, seeking the Democratic nomination for state attorney general. He lost to Mark Herring, but he surprised party insiders with his strong performance in the primary. Out of 141,600 votes cast, Herring defeated Fairfax by about 4,500 votes in a closer-than-expected race. The Washington Post praised both candidates during the primary, but endorsed Fairfax, writing that he had displayed “an agile and impressive command of the issues with a prosecutor’s passion for justice.” After the race, Fairfax co-chaired the 2014 re-election campaign of Mark Warner, Virginia Senator. He was recruited to work at the law firm of Venable LLP the following year, in the firm’s Tysons, Virginia office.
Justin Fairfax Lieutenant Governor of Virginia
Justin Fairfax ran for Lieutenant Governor of Virginia in 2017. In the Democratic primaries, Fairfax faced Gene Rossi, a federal prosecutor, who had trained Fairfax when they worked together in Alexandria’s Eastern District federal court and Susan Platt, a political lobbyist and consultant, who in the 1990s had served as chief of staff to Joe Biden (Platt had also run Virginia Senator Chuck Robb’s 1994 re-election campaign and Don Beyer’s unsuccessful 1997 gubernatorial campaign). Citing their unease with Dominion Energy’s planned construction of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, all three candidates in the Democratic primary pledged to refuse campaign contributions from Dominion Energy, despite the company being the largest contributor to Virginia political campaigns for both Republicans and Democrats. Although early polling showed Platt in the lead, he significantly outraised both of his opponents and proved victorious in the primary election, carrying about 49% of the vote.
In the general election, Fairfax then faced Republican nominee Jill Vogel, a state senator from Fauquier County. Fairfax and Vogel raised comparable amounts of money for their campaigns—$3.9 million and $3.7 million, respectively. On August 9, 2017, a forum between Fairfax and Vogel was held at Piedmont Community College and on October 5 a debate between the two candidates was held at the University of Richmond. Noting that Fairfax had been largely unknown when he ran for Attorney General four years earlier, the Washington Post wrote that Fairfax had transitioned from “party crasher” to “party insider” in the time since, having “methodically done the work necessary to raise his profile and pay dues.” The Washington Post went onto endorse Fairfax in the race, calling him “competent, bright well-versed” and “the much better choice”.
Justin Fairfax’s opposition to the Atlantic Coast and Mountain Valley pipelines led him to being omitted from a small number of campaign flyers that were distributed by the campaign for Democratic gubernatorial nominee Ralph Northam. These flyers were released at the request of Laborers’ International Union of North America (LIUNA), which supports the pipeline – LIUNA had endorsed Northam (and Northam’s running mate for Attorney General, Mark Herring, who was included on the flyer), but not Fairfax. Northam and Herring are both white while Fairfax is black, some activists criticized the Northam campaign’s decision to accommodate LIUNA’s request. Fairfax responded to the controversy and said, Thiat should not have happened and it should not happen again and the needs to be robust investment in making sure that they are communicating with African American voters and they were engaging their base. The Fairfax campaign later remarked that the Democratic ticket was “working well together”, adding “One piece of literature does not change that.” All houses that received the LIUNA flyers also received standard campaign flyers even including Fairfax’s.
former Virginia governor Douglas Wilder weighed in on the flyer controversy in the final days of the campaign, saying that Fairfax had not “been dealt a good hand”. Wilder endorsed Fairfax, but never endorsed Northam. Fairfax and Vogel aired attack ads against each other as the election drew to a close. Fairfax won the election by 5.5%. Fairfax is only the second African-American in Virginia history to be elected to statewide office (the first being Douglas Wilder, who served as governor, as well as lieutenant governor).
Justin Fairfax Tenure
The lieutenant governor’s position is part-time. in December 2017 Fairfax announced that he will be leaving his law firm, Venable. Fairfax’s law partner at Venable, Larry Roberts, served as his campaign chairman during the election and is currently serving as his chief of staff. Fairfax joined the law firm of Morrison & Foerster in September 2018, continuing the historic practice of Virginia lieutenant governors maintaining employment while in office. Fairfax as lieutenant governor, he is the first head of the Democratic Lieutenant Governors Association (DLGA), launched in August 2018. Fairfax protested a tribute in the state Senate honoring Confederate General Robert E. Lee’s birthday on January 19, 2019. Fairfax tweeted. “History repeats itself, i will be stepping off the dais today in protest of the Virginia Senate honoring Robert E. Lee…I’ll be thinking of this June 5, 1798 manumission document that freed my great-great-great grandfather Simon Fairfax from slavery in Virginia”. #WeRiseTogether.
Justin Fairfax supports policies such as a $15 minimum wage, on economic issues, action on student loan debt and more job training and apprenticeships for skilled trades such as electrician, welder and machine operator. He supports investment in transportation and infrastructure and implementation of Governor Terry McAuliffe’s Virginia Clean Power Plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in order to combat climate change. He also favors promotion of renewable energy such as wind and solar. He supports the Affordable Care Act and an expansion of Medicaid to low-income Virginians. Fairfax supports caps on campaign contributions. He has expressed support for single-payer healthcare.
Justin Fairfax Political positions
On social issues, Justin Fairfax supports abortion rights and same-sex marriage. Fairfax is supportive of gun control measures such as universal background checks, a ban on high-capacity magazines and an assault weapons ban. Fairfax supports criminal justice reform and supports former Governor McAuliffe’s restoration of voting rights to felons who have completed probation and parole terms. He favors additional action to combat the opioid crisis and supports the decriminalization of the possession of limited amounts of marijuana for personal use.
Justin Fairfax Electoral history
Virginia Attorney General Democratic primary – June 2013
Mark R. Herring
Justin E. Fairfax
Virginia Lieutenant Governor Democratic primary election – June 2017
Justin E. Fairfax
Gene J. Rossi
Susan S. Platt
Virginia Lieutenant Governor general election – November 2017
Justin E. Fairfax
Jill H. Vogel
Justin Fairfax Facebook
Justin Fairfax Twitter
Justin Fairfax Instagram
View this post on Instagram
The descendants of Robert E. Lee, “Stonewall” Jackson, and Simon Fairfax prayed together in the Virginia Lt. Governor’s Office on #MLK Day 2019. No weapon formed against us shall prosper. We are helping this nation rise to the better angels of our nature. #DrWarrenChristian #LGJustinFairfax #RevRobertWLeeIV #Virginia #legacy #reconciliation #history #love #martinlutherking #richmond #civilwar #forward #justinfairfax #WeRiseTogether