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Legislative elections in Virginia that could determine the direction of state policy the next four years are coming up, and new campaign fundraising reports identify the pivotal races to watch.
In the state House, the major race is between Democratic Minority Leader Ward Armstrong and incumbent Republican Del. Charles Poindexter, according to Associated Press. Armstrong has doubled Poindexter in fundraising, entering September with $485,000 in his campaign coffers.
The numbers don't necessarily foreshadow an outcome, however, given that Armstrong lost his district to this year's redistricting and is running in Poindexter's district.
Some observers say the Senate is the decisive battleground, with Republicans targeting Democratic senators in a half-dozen high-profile races. Democrats' loss of just a handful of seats in the state Senate could result in a Republican-controlled House and Senate in Virginia.
One high profile race pits two incumbents -- Republican Bill Stanley and Democrat Roscoe Reynolds -- against each other. Stanley, whose district was altered in redistricting, moved into Reynolds' district in order to compete in that race.
In another race, Republican Bryce Reeves challenges Democratic Sen. Ed Houck in a contest where fundraising has already topped $1.1 million, according to campaign finance filings submitted Sept. 15.