Perriello makes stops at JMU, EMU

WHSV file image from a visit by Tom Perriello to JMU and EMU in April 2017.
WHSV file image from a visit by Tom Perriello to JMU and EMU in April 2017.(WHSV)
Published: Apr. 11, 2017 at 6:22 PM EDT
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One of the men running for Virginia governor on the Democratic side made a stop at five Virginia colleges to interact with millennial voters on Tuesday.

Tom Perriello, a former congressman and U.S. diplomat originally from the Charlottesville area, visited James Madison University and Eastern Mennonite University Tuesday afternoon.

"Never stop believing progress is possible," Perriello told a room full of students at JMU.

Before taking questions, Perriello addressed a number of issues he feels are top priority in the gubernatorial race, including depoliticizing the gerrymandering process and cutting the cost of higher education for college students.

"I see a generation with unbelievable potential and we need to help them make it," said Perriello.

Perriello has also taken a stance


During both stops on Tuesday, Perriello focused on some of the backlash from President Trump's administration — a movement he hopes will turn out more blue voters at the ballot box come November.

"The thing I keep hearing from Trump supporters is 'we thought he was going to focus on the jobs,'" said Perriello. "We're focused on bringing those jobs back to these communities, including agricultural, local food and clean energy jobs of the future."

Sam Van Vlet, a JMU sophomore who attended Perriello's meet-and-greet, said while he wished Perriello would push further on his progressive policies, he agreed with his overall message.

"I know after the election in November, with the election of Donald Trump, a lot of people knew that they needed to be more politically active and I'm definitely one of them," said Van Vlet.

"We've got to bring people together, across party lines, across regional lines," Perriello said. "We really believe this is a moment where from the challenges and really negative forces of the Trump administration, it's actually bringing communities together and I think that's going to be a positive thing."

A Quinnipiac poll released Tuesday showed Perriello with a five-point lead over his contender for the Democratic nomination, Lieutenant Governor Ralph Northam.

Perriello also recently