Laquan Austion, GOP candidate for Delegate in Virginia’s 2nd district, is in hot water this week after revelations in the Richmond Times Dispatch that he misled the public and some reporters about his educational background. According to the RTD, Austion falsely claimed to Potomac Local to have a master’s degree from The George Washington University. Austion also misrepresented his degree status in public biography postings on the internet. According to GW, he is not currently enrolled at the school.
“In this age of fake news, the last thing Virginia families need is another politician we can’t trust to tell us the truth,” said Progress Virginia executive director Anna Scholl. “If voters in the 2nddistrict can’t trust Austion to be truthful about his education, how can they trust him on jobs, health care, or education? This community deserves better than just another politician who says what he thinks folks want to hear.”
By Patrick Wilson
A candidate for the Virginia House of Delegates listed a master’s degree and Ph.D. that he does not have on his LinkedIn page and provided information to a local news outlet that he had a master’s degree.
When interviewed this week, Laquan Austion, a Republican candidate in Northern Virginia, acknowledged that he did not have those degrees. He’s running in House District 2, a competitive swing district that includes parts of Prince William and Stafford counties and is represented by Del. L. Mark Dudenhefer, R-Stafford, who did not seek re-election to instead run for the Stafford County Board of Supervisors.
Austion’s LinkedIn page lists a master’s in political and policy management, American government and politics, and a Ph.D. in public policy analysis from George Washington University.
Additionally, Austion provided information to the news website Potomac Local that was published in February saying “George Washington University MA,” which typically is understood to mean Master of Arts.
He acknowledged he has no degree beyond a bachelor’s degree from Drew University in New Jersey.
“I’m pursuing my master’s and Ph.D.,” he said. “I’m in pursuit of those degrees.”
However, Austion is not currently enrolled at The George Washington University. According to school records, he studied political management there from summer 2012 to fall 2014 and no degree was awarded. Prior to that, Austion said, he attended law school at Penn State University but left because he was no longer passionate about law school and wanted to pursue civic service.