Republicans in Pulaski County were introduced last week to Sherri Blevins, a Christiansburg businesswoman seeking the party’s nomination to replace Nick Rush as 7th District Delegate.
Rush recently announced he would not seek a sixth term as Delegate.
Blevins, one of three candidates seeking the Republican nomination in the district, had praise for Rush.
“I wish Del. Rush and his family the very best. He has served the New River Valley honorably and with great integrity for the past 10 years. That service deserves our respect,” Blevins said during the GOP event held at the Historic Train Station in Pulaski.
Blevins introduced herself as a small business owner, operating New River Valley Driving School for over 22 years.
“I’m a traffic safety advocate and have worked in the school systems and throughout the community against unsafe driving. I am a recipient of the governor’s transportation award and have won numerous National Safety Council Awards, including in 2018 for Training Center of the Year.”
Blevins is in her first term on the Montgomery County Board of Supervisors. She said her husband, Buck Blevins is a recently retired State Trooper and now works with Carilion’s police department.
“I’m very proud of his over 34 years of public service,” Blevins said.
They have two children, Zachary and Kayla. Zachary attends New River Community College through the ACCE Program which Blevins says she is a strong supporter of. Kayla is a chemistry major at Radford University. She also served as a House page for the General Assembly under Del. Rush in 2017.
“We are a family of service,” Blevins told the audience.
She noted her decision to run to be the next delegate from the 7th District is based upon a desire to continue to serve the community in the best manner she possibly can.
She said the region’s economic condition is a primary concern.
“During the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve all heard of small businesses that are struggling – just like my own. Employers have struggled to retain workers and even keep their doors open. I am the candidate who has a plan to roll back job killing regulations, cut spending and work to create a strong business climate. Businesses need our support more than ever, not red tape.
“We need to promote economic growth and bring businesses and jobs back to Pulaski and the New River Valley. We need to get people back to work so they can provide for their families.
This can be accomplished by small government and lower taxes,” Blevins said.
“Serving on the Montgomery County Board of Supervisors, I’ve learned how important it is to fight for local funding in Richmond. Localities have seen a reduction in funding for schools, our public roads, public safety and human services. Local governments should not have unfunded mandates imposed upon them,” she added.
Blevins said she is a woman of “strong faith and family.”
“I will protect life, especially that of the unborn. I will support family values, work to reopen schools safely and provide human services to help families stay strong.
“Our children are failing academically, and mental health issues are on the rise.”
Being the wife of a law officer, Blevins naturally is strong in her support for law enforcement.
“I am proud to say I will defend the police. As the wife of a police officer, I know firsthand the dedication and sacrifices that these brave men and women of law enforcement make each and every day. I have always backed the police and will continue that fight in Richmond.
“Police officers are under attack and I will defend qualified immunity” [a legal defense that often prevents law officers from facing civil lawsuits.] “I will fight and support those who are on our front line. Each and every one of you need to stand behind the men and women who dedicate their lives to protect and serve us. Stand with them,” she urged fellow Republicans.
She said she is also a strong supporter of Constitutional rights of Americans.
“I will honor my oath and uphold our Constitutional rights. I am pro-2nd Amendment. I believe everyone has a right to protect themselves and their family.
“Outside of the Bible, the U.S. Constitution is the most important document in the history of the world, and the 2nd Amendment is crucial in defending our rights.
“I will oppose any and all ideas that would limit or curtail those God-given rights,” she added.
“I am and will continue to be a strong voice for the 7th District. I have a proven track record and a strong conviction to fight for this House seat. I promise to work hard during the campaign and to work even harder as your delegate.
“Let’s send a clear message to Richmond that reflects our conservative values and way of life,” she said in closing.
Pulaski County Board of Supervisors Chairman Joe Guthrie assessed the 7th District situation.
“If we had our choice of who we wanted to represent us in the 7th District it would be Nick Rush and it’s not even close,” Guthrie said.
“However, since he’s taking a much-deserved break, I can’t think of a better person to take his place in Richmond than Sherri Blevins.
“She’s someone who has already proven she can win an elected office, and that she can govern and represent our values.
“You’ve heard her speak of her support for law enforcement officers. We on the Pulaski County Board of Supervisors – all of us, unanimously – passed a resolution to support qualified immunity for our law enforcement officers.
“While we won’t have Nick Rush representing us, we need to come out in force and in mass as Republicans and vote for Sherri Blevins,” said Guthrie – predicting “We’re going to keep a seat for Republicans and we’re going to flip a seat for Republicans.”
Blevins is being opposed for the Republican nomination by Lowell Bowman of Riner and Marie March of Christiansburg.
By MIKE WILLIAMS, The Patriot