LEESBURG, Va. - A candidate who wants to legalize incest is running for Congress in Virginia. Since WUSA9 first reported the story on Nathan Larson, and heard his shocking views, thousands of people online have been asking, 'How can a guy who wants to make incest legal get on the ballot?'
Larson told WUSA9's Northern Virginia Bureau Chief Peggy Fox that he not only wants to get rid of laws that ban incest, but wants to have sex with his own daughter. He lost custody of her and never lived with her. She now lives in another state.
So, how did Larson get on the ballot to run in Virginia's 10th Congressional District race?
As an Independent, all you need is 1,000 signatures from people who live in the 10th District. Those petitions are public documents filed with the Virginia Board of Elections.
Many signatures came from Leesburg residents. Cassandre Marroquin signed back in January when he approached her out in public.
"I mean, it's obviously a shock. I had no idea there was any pedophilia when I signed this petition," she said. Marroquin said she signed it because Larson said he was a Libertarian, which is her political affiliation as well. She regrets signing it now.
"It's definitely a shock and, you know, had I done my research before signing there's no way I would've signed in the first place," she said. "There are so many things you just click, or sign something and you just run with it. And, I think people need to take a little bit more time putting some value to what they're signing."
Larson only needed 1,000 signatures to run as an Independent. If he wanted to run on one of the major party tickets, a much high bar is required by the parties to get their approval.
The other big question about Larson is how he got on the ballot as a felon. After he was convicted of threatening to kill President Obama, Larson was sentenced to 18 months behind bars.
In 2016, Governor Terry McAuliffe restored voting rights for hundreds of felons, including Larson, who was then able to run for state delegate in 2017. He did not win.
Virginia GOP Chair John Whitbeck blamed the Democrats for that.
"Their policy of restoration of felons' rights, blanket restoration, led to him being eligible to run for Congress," said Whitbeck.
Former federal prosecutor and attorney John Flannery said the bigger problem is a national climate where a candidate for Congress publicly advocates breaking the law.
"Trump has made it his bottom line statement that we don't have to respect the Constitution, we don't have to respect the laws, we don't have to respect the truth. This guy (Larson) is in all three categories," said Flannery.
To be clear, neither the Democrat nor Republican parties support Larson in any way whatsoever. In fact, they wish he wasn't on the ballot. But, Democratic party leaders said Larson could have run for congressional office, even without having his voting rights restored.
Larson's name will not be on the primary ballot on Tuesday, but he is expected to be on the ballot Election Day in November.