Among the candidate endorsements at this weekend was perhaps the strangest candidate endorsement ever given. Congressman Tom Davis is apparently interested in being a delegate to the Republican National Convention, which comes as little surprise. Congressman Tom Davis wasn’t at the PWCRC Convention, which is also unremarkable, given that the FCRC Convention was being held at the same time, and Tom was almost certainly in Fairfax, making it necessary to enroll someone to speak on his behalf. There are loads of folks in the PWCRC who have had long experience with Tom Davis, and it probably wasn’t difficult at all for Davis to put together a long list of respected folks who might speak on his behalf. To have James Young do so however, was quite a surprise, to say the least.
James has somewhat of a checkered relationship with the good Congressman, as his website demonstrates.
Words fail me. For the first time since I’ve known [Tom Davis] (and worked hard for his election, especially the first one), I am ashamed of a public act of my Congressman.
One wonders whether many Conservatives who frequently criticize Davis, but hold their noses and vote for him anyway, will be able to do so again.
“Bitterly Disappointing“, February, 2007
That hasn’t always been the case, nor is it consistently now. James was disappointed to see Tom walk away from his Congressional seat in the 11th District and has clearly stated that he has respected Tom Davis in the past. James seems to understand that in at least this case, a little bit of big-tent accommodation has been a pretty practical and sensible thing to do in this District, especially when that accommodation benefits someone so eager to share resources with and support other Republicans in Northern Virginia. There are legitimate reasons for saying good things about Tom Davis, just as there are legitimate reasons to criticize his record.
For James Young, that acceptance is pretty rare. This is a guy who loves to blast folks falling short of fully conservative ideals as RINOs, which he’s happily tagged on a number of Republicans in the Virginia Senate, Senator John Warner, former PWC Chairman Sean Connaughton, and the late Harry Parrish, often with good reason. He’s even referred to Supervisor Marty Nohe as “Connaughton pissboy Marty Nohe (RINO - Coles).” James is about as conservative as they come, and displays a special brand of ire for those who tolerate big government, fail to oppose tax hikes, or especially anyone who thinks there’s the slightest bit of difference between labor unions and outright socialism. On most public policy issues, James Young and I are in total agreement.
So imagine my shock and surprise, and mine wasn’t the only one with my jaw dropping here, when James Young gets up to sing the praises of how Tom Davis brings together “conservatives and moderate conservatives” and has been a tireless supporter of conservative causes. Appearing uncharacteristically uncomfortable as a speaker, Young droned on for some time to a pretty stunned audience about Tom Davis’ commitment to ideals that James Young supports and that Davis would make a fine representative to the national convention. I was unable to find any evidence of a remotely controlled explosive device strapped to his body, nor did my experienced eye spot a likely concealment position for a sniper ready to exact vengeance for a derogatory utterance. There are plenty of other potential explanations for this entirely out-of-character performance, but I haven’t yet found any evidence that would support one of those strange scenarios.
Don’t take this to mean that Tom Davis wouldn’t be a bad representative for Virginia. Tom has a lot to offer, and while I might not agree with every position he’s ever taken, he clearly has a valuable perspective to consider that’s backed by considerable experience and expertise. James Young didn’t seem to mention much of that however, instead characterizing his legislative record as nothing short of conservative nirvana. Just as I would never fathom Rush Limbaugh singing the praises of Arlen Specter’s voting record and encouraging a larger role for him in the Republican Party, having James Young laud Tom Davis in this way, and start using terms such as “moderate conservatives” is a hugely bizarre happening.
Yes, James Young is now officially a squish. For his next trick, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him fund-raising for Maureen Caddigan and lauding her “moderate conservative” credentials. Someone better check on Mr. Young’s family pretty quick, and make sure they haven’t been held prisoner by RINO terrorists sporting “Whip Inflation Now!” buttons and armed with old videos of Gerald Ford giving speeches touting the merits of federal price controls, lest something terribly tragic happen result. This could get really ugly.
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