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A Few HOD Races To Watch

By Greg L | 1 November 2009 | Arlington County, Fairfax County, Virginia House | 10 Comments

While a lot of discussion has been devoted to some of the big money races where Republicans are looking to take seats from Democrats in Northern Virginia, there are a couple others that could have some interesting outcomes that haven’t gotten as much mention, and that I’ve noted before.  If the McDonnell/Bolling/Cucccinelli coat-tails are as big as I think they may be, here are a few faces that could be awfully close, and perhaps even winnable.

Sasha Gong

This would be an unlikely win, not because Gong isn’t a great candidate for this district — she’s outstanding in fact – but because neither her nor her opponent have been working all that hard.  McDonnell taking this district would be quite a surprise, and if he does, Gong has a solid fighting chance here.  If you’re not sure why, just look at the meager accomplishments of Charnielle Herring and take a look at this video:

Jay McConville

A lot of money has flowed in here to protect the seat of the retiring Kris Amundson, which you wouldn’t much expect in a district like this.  Democrats are clearly concerned that Surovell, the former chairman of the FCDC, might not be the kind of candidate who is going to take this usually deep-blue seat.  McConville has been working his tail off, seeing an opening here with the likelihood that the turnout in this district might surprise Democrats.  Check out Jay McConville here:

Chris Merola

Here we’ve got a Fairfax district where the incumbent Jim Scott has been in place for more than 30 years.  It’s about the most unlikely spot for an upset imaginable, until you notice that his name recognition among his constituents is an an embarrasing 26.7% and trails that of Merola.  To add insult to injury, Scott doesn’t even have an issues page on his website, and made claims about Merola that makes quite a folks legitimately question his sanity.  Merola meanwhile is obviously doing a lot of things right, and there’s a chance here he could pull off one of the more stunning upsets in Northern Virginia.

Aaron Ringel

I’ve talked about Aaron Ringel before, and he continues to impress.  His latest creative effort put some interesting campaign materials out which have gotten quite a bit of attention, while Bob Brink struggles to figure out what to do in the first actually competitive race he has ever faced.  Even NLS is recognizing Ringel’s momentum here, although he’s not going as far to say that Brink is on the ropes.  Brink might be.  We’ll find out on Tuesday night.

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  1. Gnarly said on 1 Nov 2009 at 7:23 pm:
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    I still think the only possible gain in NOVA will come from either one or all picking up for Rs (Comstock, Greason, and LeMunyon….with the latter being the most likely). PWC will be a wash with an R pick-up in the 51st with Anderson and an R loss with Torian winning the 52nd.

    Then we come out of Tidewater with a Hamilton loss for Rs but 2 R pick-ups at the beach for a net change of plus 1.

    Then across Southside/Southwest I hate to say, but one of the incumbent Rs will lose, but we hold the opens and pick-up the 3rd in the coalfields. giving a zero net change. All Central and Piedmont Rs will hold.

    This is far more pessimistic than all the predictions I’ve seen for GOP pick-ups, but I’m predicting a 2 or 3 seat pick-up for the GOP in House seats this cycle. I’m just not sure why I’m so pessimistic about it. I just see it that way right now.

  2. Greg L said on 1 Nov 2009 at 7:53 pm:
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    Gnarly, that’s an interesting asessment that the Dems would take a lot heart from. I’m seeing things a little differently, and NLS and I seem to be seeing things along the same lines.

    Comstock, Greason and LeMunyon will win, providing the first 3 pick-ups in Fairfax and Loudoun. Hyland will add a fourth, and we might have one more from among McConville, Bolgnese, or Keam Danny Smith. Maybe 2.

    In PWC, it will be a full Republican sweep providing a net gain of +1. Torian is wilting.

    Elsewhere, Stan Clark takes Barlow, Morefield takes Bowling, Stolle takes Bouchard, and Villanueva takes Mathieson. Hamilton is going to hang on.

    Bury and Nank are competitive, and put two more potential pickups in play. Add the above folks to the list, and that’s one heck of a lot of competitive races for Dems to defend when the wind is in their faces. They can’t adequately concentrate effort across eighteen different races no matter how much late union money gets throw their way, and most of the big money is getting siphoned off by Deeds, Wagner and Shannon who can’t afford to lend any resources. Meanwhile, a lot of money that might have been needed to seal the deal for McDonnell, Bolling and Cooch is getting pushed downstream to HOD races where the fights are close and winnable. Republicans have resources to push down-ticket, while Democrats have none.

    That makes nine pick-ups that look pretty solid now, and the potential for at least five more. A pickup of between nine and fourteen is huge. I’m projecting eleven, conservatively.

  3. Ron said on 1 Nov 2009 at 9:52 pm:
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    “Hyland will add a fourth, and we might have one more from among McConville, Bolgnese, or Keam. Maybe 2.”

    Keam? He’s the Democrat running against Hyland! Did you mean someone else?

  4. Greg L said on 1 Nov 2009 at 10:00 pm:
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    Oh yeah, that was quite a typo. Meant to say Danny Smith.

  5. Gnarly said on 2 Nov 2009 at 12:05 am:
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    I sure hope you’re right Greg…I really do.

  6. zuzu said on 2 Nov 2009 at 12:08 pm:
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    I hope this isn’t true but, I just heard that the race between Miller & Rishell is very close….what’s up with THAT?

  7. Greg L said on 2 Nov 2009 at 12:31 pm:
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    The Miller-Rishell race is close in the sense of whether Miller will win by over twenty points or under from what I’ve been hearing.

    Still, don’t get cocky and feel you don’t have to go to the polls because the race has already been decided. It hasn’t. Fight right up to the last minute to make sure it’s decided the right way.

  8. Casanova Frankenstein said on 2 Nov 2009 at 12:31 pm:
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    You’ve got bad intel, zuzu.

    Not even close.

    Right now, the GOP has 53 seats plus 2 indies who vote with them. That’s 55. Add these gains and they’ll be between 64 and 69 seats.

    I think we should aim for 70 seats after redistricting come 2011.

  9. zuzu said on 2 Nov 2009 at 3:11 pm:
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    Thanks for the reassurance CF & GL. I’ll definitely be there in support of McDonnell, Cooch, Miller, & Bolling. I was just wondering because it looks like they (the opposition) really hit Manassas hard over the weekend with all the Deeds signage that’s been plastered around town. Interestingly, several hispanic members of SEIU came to my door over the weekend.
    I don’t know why they came to MY door because I’ve been a registered Republican for 28 years (maybe an admin error).
    I played along as an Independent and they said they’d be at all polling places tomorrow. They wanted to know if I was registered to vote (what if I’m not…did they have an “alternative plan” this late in the game?) and if I’d be voting on Tue and if I knew who I was voting for, etc. Then I asked them if they had a permit to “solicit” in my neighborhood, at which point they turned and walked away, ignoring my repeated question. I called my neighbor and told her what was going on and she went out and asked them if they had a permit to solicit in our community. A few minutes later, they left the area. Adios!

  10. FED UP said on 2 Nov 2009 at 5:01 pm:
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    EVERYONE NEEDS TO GET OUT AND VOTE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Comments are closed.

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