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Posts in "Virginia"
June 10, 2014
National Democrats are considering competing for House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s House seat in the unlikely case the Virginia Republican runs as a write-in candidate in November.
On Tuesday evening, Cantor lost his primary to college professor David Brat in one of the most shocking defeats in modern political history.
The nascent Democratic efforts include outreach out to the Democratic nominee, college professor Jack Trammell, according to knowledgeable Democratic sources.
Virginia’s 7th District is solid Republican territory. Cantor won his 2012 general election by 17 points, while Mitt Romney carried the seat by 15 points. But Democrats see a path to victory there if Cantor wages a write-in campaign and splits the Republican vote.
At the same time, local Republicans telegraphed that a Cantor write-in candidacy is unlikely.
May 30, 2014
ARLINGTON, Va. — Democratic Sen. Mark Warner emphasized his bipartisan credentials Thursday to the local voters he hopes will re-elect him in November.
“This is gonna be won with Democrats, independents, Republicans and everyone else,” Warner told the crowd at The Spectrum Theatre, part of a six-day, 14-stop tour of the commonwealth that coincides with the release of his first television ad.
The rally’s venue had the feel of a lecture hall, with pull-out desks on each seat. Signs were neatly stacked in a grid along a side wall as Warner spoke on a stage against a backdrop of two large signs and a flag.
Warner is favored to win over likely GOP nominee Ed Gillespie, a former RNC chairman and George W. Bush adviser. But his race could be more competitive than anticipated, in part thanks to his well-connected foe.
Virginia is a competitive state that’s elected both Republicans and Democrats to statewide office over the past decade. Though Democrats currently control both Senate seats and the governor’s mansion, statewide elections are fiercely contested.
December 17, 2013
Updated 2 p.m. | Republican Rep. Frank R. Wolf will not seek an 18th term in Congress, according to a statement from his office.
“I have decided not to seek re-election to the U.S. Congress in 2014,” Wolf, the dean of Virginia’s congressional delegation, said on Tuesday. “It has been an honor to serve the people of northern Virginia and the Shenandoah Valley.”
“I thank my constituents for giving me the privilege of representing them in Congress for 34 years,” he added. Full story
January 24, 2013
Virginia Democratic Sens. Mark Warner and Tim Kaine — both former governors of the commonwealth — are disappointed with a couple of bills moving forward in the state Senate, including a proposal that would allocate the state’s presidential electoral votes by congressional district.
That bill, sponsored by Republican state Sen. Bill Carrico, would give presidential nominees an electoral vote for each of Virginia’s 11 congressional districts they carry, plus two at-large votes to the nominee that wins a majority of the districts. If the bill had been law last year, President Barack Obama would have won just four of the state’s 13 electoral votes, despite winning the state by some 150,000 votes.
“The vote is sacred,” Kaine said in a statement to CQ Roll Call. “No legislative chamber should use this kind of partisan stunt to gain a temporary advantage at the expense of the electorate. It’s dirty tricks like this that will keep the Virginia legislature a staple on late night TV.” Full story
November 20, 2012
Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., announced Tuesday that he will not seek a return to the governorship next year, setting up a likely bid for re-election in 2014.
“Over the last year, a lot of Virginians – Democrats, Republicans, and independents – have approached me and asked that I consider running for Governor a second time,” Warner said in a statement. “I loved being governor, but I have a different job now — and it’s here in the United States Senate.”
It’s well-known that Warner enjoyed his time as governor from 2002 to 2006, and rumors of a potential return to Richmond have wafted through the Old Dominion political scene for the past year. As the most popular politician in the state, Warner would have been the heavy favorite in the gubernatorial race, and he is currently favored to win his first bid for re-election to the Senate. Full story
November 14, 2012
Brian Moran announced Wednesday that he will step down next month as state Democratic Party chairman after one term, and one candidate to replace him has already lined up major support.
State Del. Charniele Herring released a statement within hours of Moran’s announcement that her candidacy for the chairmanship has the backing of Moran and gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe, the former chairman of the Democratic National Committee. The next state party chairman will oversee the 2013 gubernatorial and state legislative elections, as well as the 2014 midterms.
Moran leaves after a cycle in which President Barack Obama carried Virginia and former Gov. Tim Kaine, a Democrat, won the state’s open Senate seat. Moran, the brother of Democratic Rep. James P. Moran, said the party over the past two years “laid the foundation to continue our momentum and elect our candidates in 2013 and beyond.”
Kaine defeated former Gov. George Allen in the Senate race by 6 points and more than 200,000 votes. Allen, who also lost his race for re-election to the Senate in 2006, told the Richmond Times-Dispatch on Monday that he will not run for public office again.
November 6, 2012
After months of courting, some Spanish-speaking voters encountered problems casting a ballot today.
Voters exiting the Bailey’s Community Center in Falls Church, Va., one of Northern Virginia’s more ethnically diverse areas, said the morning was particularly challenging for elderly and Hispanic voters.
Speaking in broken English, Manuel Matamoros, a middle-aged Hispanic man, said a poll worker declined to help him with comprehension questions about the ballot — assistance he had no trouble getting in 2008.
November 4, 2012
President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney made their closing pitches to swelled crowds of swing state supporters in the final weekend before voters deliver their verdict, while top surrogates hit the Sunday show circuit to spin their map to victory on Tuesday.
Much of the debate in the campaign’s final hours has focused on Pennsylvania, where Romney is campaigning today and where President Bill Clinton will stump for Obama on Monday. Republicans insist their last-minute play for the Keystone State is based on polling showing it’s winnable. But Democrats charge that the move is a sign of desperation from a team whose path to 270 electoral votes is narrowing.
Later today, Romney will stop in Morrisville, Pa., a suburb of Philadelphia across the river from New Jersey. The Romney team sought to expand the battleground map with a late multi-million dollar investment on Pennsylvania airwaves, vastly outspending Democrats there in the last two weeks.
“It’s a remarkable juxtaposition here that Mitt Romney will be in the suburbs of Philadelphia today, and, you know, four years ago, Barack Obama was in Indiana,” Romney senior adviser Ed Gillespie said on ABC’s “This Week.” “When you look at where this map has gone, it reflects the — the change and the direction and the momentum toward Governor Romney. And the fact is that a state like Pennsylvania being in play, a poll out today showing Michigan a dead heat, you know, this — the map has expanded.” Full story
October 31, 2012
ASHLAND, Va. — Former Gov. Tim Kaine spent an hour today in a Democratic town within a heavily Republican county in an effort to encourage his supporters to persuade the remaining undecided voters to vote for him and to increase turnout among Democrats.
Standing on a stage where live bluegrass bands often play, Kaine, who is running against former Gov. George Allen (R) for the state’s open Senate seat, said that 3 percent of voters are probably still undecided. He said “person-to-person contact” is vital at this point in the campaign. Kaine said that more than $20 million in outside money has been spent against him by rich individuals from out of state who can write checks with a lot of zeros, and said he wants to “show there aren’t enough zeros in the world” to beat a grass-roots campaign run by Virginians.
Truman Parmele, the owner of the coffee shop and music venue, said bands play there five nights a week, performing any kind of music but hip-hop. Parmele, 67, said he’s independent, formerly in the Air Force and moderate on social issues. He told Roll Call that Obamacare scares him, and he asked Kaine whether he would support a flat tax. Parmele said Kaine is “very personable” and said he will probably support him.
President Barack Obama’s campaign claimed today that Mitt Romney’s campaign is “flailing” in the final days, with senior strategist David Axelrod betting his mustache that Obama will win the newly minted battlegrounds of Pennsylvania, Michigan and Minnesota.
Axelrod and Obama campaign manager Jim Messina on a conference call with reporters dismissed the Romney campaign’s late charge into those states, despite persistent polling leads for Obama, as a sign that it is losing in the existing battlegrounds and is increasingly desperate to expand the map.
“It’s break glass time in Boston,” Axelrod said. “I’ve put my mustache on the line.”
Messina said Democrats are piling up big leads among early voters in key battleground states including Nevada, Iowa, Ohio, Colorado and Florida.
Axelrod dismissed a question about Obama consistently trailing significantly among independents in polling. Full story
October 1, 2012
People for the American Way will launch a $1 million Hispanic ad campaign during the next five weeks in a trio of unexpected battleground states.
Ohio, Wisconsin and Virginia are known for their competitive presidential politics — but not for their strong Latino voting populations. PFAW is betting that, in a tight race, these votes will prove pivotal.
The liberal group’s first spot, “Somos El 47 percent,” targets GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s surreptitiously recorded comments to a private fundraiser in Florida last May. The campaign includes television, radio and direct mail.
“Mitt Romney recently said that 47 percent of us are dependent on the government, and that we think of ourselves as victims,” according to a PFAW translation of the 30-second Spanish spot. “He also said that we come here for a free deal.”
Many well-funded Democratic groups have been on the air for months with Spanish-language ads in key presidential states with burgeoning Latino voter populations, such as Florida, Nevada and Colorado.
Relatively, the trio of states receiving PFAW’s new campaign have smaller Latino voting populations, with estimates in the single digits. But historically, all three states have featured close presidential campaigns. In 2004, Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) carried Wisconsin by about 12,000 votes.
August 30, 2012
TAMPA, Fla. — Look no further than the Virginia delegation’s placement on the floor of the Republican National Convention to understand how important the state is to the GOP’s hopes of winning the White House.
This week, the Old Dominion delegation has enjoyed a front-row view of the proceedings. And when former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney formally accepts his party’s presidential nomination this evening, just to his left will be Virginia, the state that could ultimately decide whether he defeats President Barack Obama on Nov. 6. Full story
April 17, 2012
Former Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine (D) will not attend Wednesday’s Shad Planking, the state’s largest annual political event.
According to a schedule released by his campaign, Kaine will instead attend an economic roundtable with female business and community leaders near Richmond at the time of the event. He’ll attend another roundtable event with veterans and military families in Norfolk earlier in the day and hold a tele-town hall Wednesday evening. Full story
April 3, 2012
George Allen’s Senate campaign announced today that the former governor and Senator raised more than $1.4 million in the first quarter of 2012, leaving the Republican with $2.7 million in cash on hand as of the end of March.
Allen is likely to advance beyond the June 12 primary to face off against former Gov. Tim Kaine (D), who earlier today announced raising $2.2 million last quarter. Kaine’s campaign is expected to report $4.4 million in the bank as of Saturday. Full story
March 20, 2012
With no end in sight for the GOP presidential nomination fight, President Barack Obama’s numbers are on the rise in the Old Dominion.
A Quinnipiac University poll released today found Obama’s support in Virginia reaching new heights, while the Senate race remains within the margin of error.
In a race with Mitt Romney, Obama hit 50 percent support and led the likely GOP nominee by 8 points, up from a 4-point margin last month. Likely Senate nominee Tim Kaine (D) has not received the same kind of boost against George Allen (R), as the battle of the former governors remains a statistical tie, where it’s been since Kaine entered the race last April. Full story