PRESS RELEASE: This Doesn’t Look Like Democracy

July 17, 2023.

I’m Audrey Clement, the Independent candidate for Arlington County Board on November 7, 2023, and I’m troubled about the bankrolling of Arlington’s recent election for Commonwealth’s Attorney.

The contrast in fundraising between the two candidates in that race was stark. Virginia campaign finance data show that winning incumbent Parisa Dehghani-Tafti raised almost $1.5 million in two races since 2019, of which less than half a percent came from small donors contributing $100 or less. Josh Katcher, who challenged her in 2023, raised more than $323,000, of which 23 percent came from small donors

Dehghani-Tafti got $1.4 million from big donors: 70 percent or almost $1 million from out of state George Soros PACS; 12 percent from other PACs; and only 10 percent from people living inside the district (i.e. Arlington or Falls Church).

Katcher got more than $273,000 from big donors: 69 percent from district residents; 16 percent from other Virginia residents; and only 15 percent from out of state

Katcher’s opponents made much of the sparsely documented fact that he got money from former Trump donors. Yet what could be more undemocratic than buying an election with out of state money as Dehghani-Tafti clearly did? It’s obvious that since most of her well-heeled donors don’t live here, they will not suffer the consequences of the votes they bought.

Those who oppose Soros bankrolled elections across the U.S. have been smeared as antisemites, even when the candidates they do support like Katcher are Jewish.

Smearing people who oppose the buying of elections doesn’t look like democracy to me. It looks like oligarchy pure and simple.

If you want to elect someone who will stand up to the George Soros crowd; support prosecutors who will curtail the burgeoning crime rate in Arlington County; and restore an understaffed police force then vote Clement for County Board.

If elected, I also pledge to:

  • Seek immediate tax relief for residents and businesses.
  • Emphasize basic services like: streets, schools, libraries and public safety.
  • Stop “Missing Middle” up-zoning, which will not produce affordable housing but will have major negative impacts.

If you share my agenda, then:

  • Spread the word about my candidacy.
  • Donate to my campaign.
  • Help make the “Arlington Way” more than an empty phrase.