Women win big in Virginia election

Most of the winners were women who beat Republican men in the Virginia House of Delegates races.

WOODBRIDGE, VA (WUSA9) - Women played a huge role in the big democratic wins in Virginia. 

Most of the winners were women who beat Republican men in the Virginia House of Delegates races. And the epicenter of what's been called an election night Tsunami was Prince Williams County.  

"Many women. Amazing. I am so happy," exclaimed Hala Ayala, one of several women celebrating their enormous wins election night in Prince William county.  

She is a single mother of two and a cyber security specialist. Like the others, it was Ayala's first time running for office.

"I think it means positivity. It means a step forward. It means hope. It means we're no longer for haters, we're for lovers.  We've gotten a heart transplant," said Ayala, who started to tear up thinking about the people she hopes to help. 

"I'm just so proud about the progress we're going to make. We're going to be able to fight for working families.  And give them healthcare.It's humanitarian. It's important. I've walked these steps and I see people who are afraid," said Ayala. 

She told the story about her son whose life was saved thanks to Medicaid. 

Getting Medicaid expansion passed is her first goal. 

But she needs to find a job first. She gave up her cyber security job with the Department of Homeland Security to run for office. She says it was that important to her. 

"Yeah, I care that much. I don't know if people understand that," she said.

But,paying her bills hasn't been easy. 

"I cashed in my 401K. It's very scary. Cashed it in, paid my bills up to a certain point. Speed dated with job-hunting and I'm still waiting for that to come through. And I don't know what's going to happen after this. But, I'm just praying, hoping. And I'm so happy that I'm going to be able to help people like me," said Ayala. 

She is very much looking forward to started at the state capital in Richmond. 

"We get to walk in the halls of Thomas Jefferson. Our forefathers, who never probably thought a woman would be in there. Well, we give literal meaning to women in the House," Ayala laughed.  

Ayala beat Del. Rich Anderson, 62, who has served in the Virginia House of Delegates since 2010. He represents the 51st district.

© 2017 WUSA-TV


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