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Foust vows to zero in on Comstock's legislative record

By Joe Beck

John Foust, the Democratic nominee in the 10th Congressional District, served notice Monday that he intends to focus on Del. Barbara Comstock's record in the General Assembly during the campaign to replace retiring U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf, R-Vienna.

Comstock, R-McLean, won a clear majority Saturday against five other Republicans, all of whom had questioned whether she was conservative enough to deserve the party's nomination.

Foust said Comstock's voting record in Richmond leaves no doubt in his mind that she is too conservative for the 10th District, which has narrowly voted for the Republican candidates in the two most recent presidential and gubernatorial elections.

Early signs point to a hard-fought, high spending, closely contested race with money for both candidates pouring in from across the nation.

In a news release Saturday, Foust, a member of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, blamed Comstock for joining the rest of her party in opposing expansion of Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe has made Medicaid expansion a high priority in his first months in office, but the ensuing standoff with Republicans has prevented the passage of a budget and increased the likelihood of a state government shutdown by July 1.

"Her current lock-step support of Richmond Republicans is driving the commonwealth toward a Washington-style government shutdown," Foust said of Comstock in his written comments.

Foust said in an interview Monday he supports Medicaid expansion, citing the need to "make health care available for 400,000 Virginians" and the loss of millions of tax dollars from Virginia to other states that have chosen to expand Medicaid.

"The impact on rural hospitals and hospitals in general if we don't adopt it could be devastating," Foust said of Medicaid expansion. "It's the right thing to do."

A phone call and email message to Comstock's campaign offices were not returned.

Comstock issued a written statement after winning the Republican nomination in which she made an indirect reference to Foust as the "hand-picked candidate" of House minority leader Nancy Pelosi.

"The election in November will be about my plans to get the economy growing again, creating jobs and repealing and replacing Obamacare," Comstock said. "Congress is in desperate need of problem solvers, and I intend to use my common sense principles to better the lives of my constituents when I am elected in November."

Contact staff writer Joe Beck at 540-465-5137 ext. 142, or jbeck@nvdaily.com

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