This article appeared online at on Wednesday, November 3, 2021: 

Winsome Sears made history Tuesday night: In winning the election for Lieutenant Governor, she became the first black woman in Virginia’s history to win a statewide race.

But this wasn’t the first of her “firsts.” Born in Jamaica in 1964, she emigrated to the United States where, after obtaining degrees in English, economics, and organizational leadership, she ran a Salvation Army homeless shelter.

In November 2001, she became the first Jamaican female Republican, the first female veteran, and the first naturalized citizen to serve in Virginia’s House of Delegates.

She also, unintentionally, became the first political candidate in recent Virginia political history to run on a photo taken of her while she was at a shooting range. She was holding a semi-automatic rifle. Her campaign staff turned it into an effective political tool by adding the phrase, “Battle Tested Conservative. Semper Fi.”

When asked about the photo, Sears was surprised. After all, she said, “I’m a Marine. I know how to use a gun.” She added, “But let’s think about this: the Second Amendment tells us we have a right to do so. We have a right to own guns.” She added, “I won’t ever support a red flag law! The Second Amendment says ‘shall not be infringed!’”

In an interview with the Washington Times she explained, “They [guns] are for our protection, and the fastest gun-owning segment [of the population] are Black women.”

During her appearance on Fox & Friends on Tuesday night, she gave God the credit for her win, exclaiming that her victory was “a God thing.”

This fits well with newly elected Governor Glenn Youngkin, who also has strong faith. He met his wife, Suzanne, shortly before obtaining an MBA from Harvard Business School, and they were married shortly after his graduation. According to Youngkin,

She actually said: “You know, I really need to have our faith be in the middle of our marriage. I didn’t really fully appreciate the journey she was going to put me on.”

It’s entirely appropriate for the newly elected governor and lieutenant governor to give credit to God. The country’s first president, George Washington, was the first to proclaim Thanksgiving Day, in 1789, declaring:

Now therefore I do recommend and assign Thursday the 26th day of November next to be devoted by the People of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being, Who is the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be. That we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks, for His kind care and protection of the People of this Country previous to their becoming a Nation, for the signal and manifold mercies, and the favorable interpositions of His providence, which we experienced in the course and conclusion of the late war, for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty, which we have since enjoyed for the peaceable and rational manner, in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national One now lately instituted for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed; and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and in general for all the great and various favors which He hath been pleased to confer upon us.

Founding Father Benjamin Rush (who signed the and founded Dickinson College) was even more explicit about the importance of a strong faith, especially among leaders:

Without there can be no virtue, and without virtue there can be no liberty, and liberty is the object and life of all governments.

It’s reassuring to know that Virginia will shortly be able to celebrate the inauguration of two individuals to lead the state whose faith allows them to declare His preeminence in their lives.

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