State Sen. Hashmi of Chesterfield enters 2025 lieutenant governor’s race

State Sen. Ghazala Hashmi is the fourth candidate running to be Democratic nominee for Virginia's lieutenant governor in 2025. (Courtesy of Ghazala Hashmi)

By Michael O'Connor

May 2, 2024

Hashmi, a champion for reproductive rights, joins a crowded field seeking the Democratic nomination.

Yet another candidate is entering the fray to become the Democratic nominee for Virginia’s lieutenant governor in 2025.

State Sen. Ghazala Hashmi, (D-Chesterfield), on Thursday officially launched her campaign to become the Democratic nominee for lieutenant governor in Virginia in 2025.

Hashmi was widely expected to enter the race ahead of her official announcement this week. Hashmi works at Reynolds Community College and was inspired to get involved in politics by Donald Trump’s travel ban targeting Muslims in 2017. Hashmi flipped her state Senate seat in 2019.

More recently, Hashmi has championed legislation to protect reproductive freedoms, such as bolstering access to birth control in Virginia, and the issue looks to be a centerpiece of her campaign.

“As a mother of two girls and as someone who won the ‘Defender of Choice’ award in 2023, I have fought hard to protect reproductive healthcare and will continue to secure reproductive rights in Virginia as lieutenant governor,” Hashmi said in her campaign announcement.

A crowded field

Hashmi’s entry to Virginia’s lieutenant governor’s race adds to an already crowded field in the June 2025 Democratic primary.

“Sen. Hashmi enters the race as a serious candidate for LG,” said Stephen Farnsworth, a political science professor at the University of Mary Washington. “She has an effective track record as a legislator in Richmond. Her focus on health concerns provides a specific appeal to the many Democratic primary voters concerned about the affordability and availability of health care.”

Other Democrats vying for the nomination are: Babur Lateef, a doctor and Prince William School Board member; state Sen. Aaron Rouse of Virginia Beach; and Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney.

Stoney shook up the state primaries last week when he announced he was ending his campaign to be the Democratic nominee for governor and entering the lieutenant governor’s race. Hashmi appeared to make a subtle jab at Stoney in her campaign announcement, saying she doesn’t see the office of lieutenant governor “as a stepping stone.”

“I’m running to solidify the Democratic brick wall as our next Lieutenant Governor,” Hashmi said. “We need an accomplished, progressive Senator to do just that.”

Role of Virginia’s lieutenant governor

Virginia’s lieutenant governor breaks ties in the state Senate, which is important when the chamber is narrowly divided between Republicans and Democrats, as it is now.

Lieutenant governors in Virginia often go on to run for governor. Since Virginia governors cannot run for re-election, the other two statewide elected offices, lieutenant governor and attorney general, have an advantage in running for governor, Farnsworth said.

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  • Michael O'Connor

    Michael is an award-winning journalist who has been covering Virginia news since 2013 with reporting stints at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Virginia Business, and Richmond BizSense. A graduate of William & Mary and Northern Virginia Community College, he also covered financial news for S&P Global Market Intelligence.



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