Andy Doernen/Newsradio WRVA

Wagner retiring from Virginia Senate

Republican represents key swing district

March 07, 2019 - 11:20 am

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A Republican representing a key Virginia Senate swing seat has announced his retirement.

Virginia Beach Sen. Frank Wagner said Thursday that he will not seek re-election later this year.

Democrats are expected to spend heavily in the district, which has been trending blue in recent elections.

Republican Sen. Dick Black, who represents a swing district in northern Virginia, announced his retirement earlier this year.

Republicans control the Senate 21-19, but Democrats are hopeful that voter antipathy toward President Donald Trump will them flip control of the upper chamber. Republicans are hoping that scandals surrounding the state's top three Democrats will help GOP candidates.

Wagner is also chairman of the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee, a panel that has broad influence over business laws and regulations.