N. Baxter Ennis is a Republican candidate for the Virginia House of Delegates District 89. His name will appear on the ballot on November 7, 2023.
Ennis is running against Democratic candidate Karen L. Jenkins.
10 On Your Side reached out to all of the candidates running in this race with specific questions. The responses below came directly from the candidate and are unedited. If you do not see the candidate listed with a profile, we did not receive one.
Candidate Name: N. Baxter Ennis
Race: Virginia House of Delegates District 89
Candidate Website: www.baxterennis.com
Biography: Baxter Ennis has a diverse background in military, academia, publishing, and community involvement.
He served 21 years in the United States Army retiring as a lieutenant colonel. He directed the public relations effort for the US. Army’s most media intensive division, the 82nd Airborne Division, deploying on the first aircraft during the First Gulf War – Desert Shield/Desert Storm. He also participated in a combat parachute jump with the division during the Panama Invasion. During these two high-profile deployments, he worked with almost every major television and radio network, as well as most leading newspaper wire services and major dailies in the world.
After the military, Ennis lead the public relations department for a major university where he directed the popular annual Clash of the Titans and launched the Executive Leadership Series monthly luncheons. He later started his own newspaper. He currently serves on the Chesapeake Hospital Authority. He has served as president of the Chesapeake Rotary Club, the Virginia Beach Forum, and is currently President of the Hampton Roads Leadership Prayer Breakfast. He also served on the Mayor’s Commission on Veterans Affairs. He is active with his church having served in several leadership positions.
In 2018 he published “When Leadership Mattered: Inspiring Stories of 12 People Who Changed the World.” In his book Ennis writes “Great leaders can be found anywhere, from the battlefield to the boardroom to a basketball court. The leaders in this book refused to bow to the tyranny of the status quo, and with tenacity, boldness and an unshakeable sense of the rightness of their cause, challenged the inevitable.” The book is available on Amazon.com and Kindle.
He and his wife, Glenda live in Chesapeake, Virginia. They have three wonderful adult children and four awesome grandchildren.
Why are you running for this office?
My whole life has been dedicated to serving others. I spent 21 years of my career serving in the United States Army. I’ve served my community as an appointee on the Chesapeake Hospital Authority, President of the Hampton Roads Prayer Breakfast and a former President of the Chesapeake Rotary Club. Now, I want to serve the people of Chesapeake & Suffolk in a new capacity.
What is the most important issue facing Virginia, and what is your position on it?
Right now, Inflation is the most important issue facing Virginia. I will work to eliminate the grocery tax, gas tax and reduce the income tax so that Virginians can keep more of their hard-earned money.
What is the top challenge facing your district, and how would you address it?
Our district has a large veteran’s population. Transition from military life to civilian life can be difficult and many veterans struggle with mental illness and substance abuse. I am committed to working with local leaders to ensure our veterans can obtain good paying jobs and quality healthcare post-service. As a retired Army officer this is personal for me.
What is your view on Governor Glen Youngkin’s proposal for a 15-week abortion ban with restrictions?
I support Governor Youngkin’s 15-week proposal, with the exception of rape and the life of the mother. I believe this proposal is a pragmatic solution that can garner bipartisan support – and the majority of Virginians support it.
How do you feel about the politicization of public education?
I believe parents should have a say in their children’s education and that schools need to focus on the fundamentals (math, reading, writing, science, etc.). We need to be preparing students for a competitive and changing workforce and our students are falling behind. I’ll work to ensure tax dollars go straight into the classroom to benefit our students.
What legislation would you plan to sponsor in your first year?
Inflation has gotten out of control due to failed policies coming out of D.C. If elected, I would like to sponsor Governor Youngkin’s Gas Tax suspension to give Virginians some relief, and put more of their hard-earned money back in their pocket.
What is your view on unlimited campaign contributions? Should that change?
I believe people should be free to choose how they spend their money. I don’t believe it’s the role of the government to tell citizens how much money they can or can’t donate to a candidate running for office.
How will you still value constituents with whom you disagree with?
I am committed to representing everyone in the 89th district regardless of political preferences. I will have an open-door policy for all my constituents. I can’t guarantee that we will always agree, but I can guarantee that every constituent concern will be heard and treated with respect.