At a party of Virginia Democrats in McLean, Patricia Ramsey, a black college biology professor, recalled how whites closed her elementary school in Surry County, Va., after courts ordered they be desegregated. A President Obama says to her that young people "can be anything they want to be if they put their mind to it and work hard.
"This is America, and we can achieve the American dream."
Democrats gained at least one seat in Virginia's U.S. House delegation when Gerald Connolly won the seat of retiring Republican incumbent Tom Davis.
Connolly defeated Republican Keith Fimian in northern Virginia's 11th District.
Two GOP incumbents — Thelma Drake and Virgil Goode — were locked in tight races late Tuesday.
Eight incumbents won re-election. Republican Frank Wolf defeated Democrat Judy Feder in the 10th District. Republicans Randy Forbes, Eric Cantor, Rob Wittman and Bob Goodlatte also turned back Democratic challenges. Forbes beat Andrea Miller in the 4th District, Cantor defeated Anita Hartke in the 7th, Wittman beat Bill Day in the 1st, and Goodlatte beat Sam Rasoul in the 6th. Democratic incumbent Jim Moran defeated Republican Mark Ellmore in the 8th.
Democratic incuments Bobby Scott in the 3rd District and Rick Boucher in the 9th were unopposed.
Contributing: Associated Press