Upset that Virginia hasn’t done anything about charter schools, illegal immigration, getting out of the liquor business, merit pay for teachers, or dealing with exploding entitlements, to name a few items? The Senate is where all the bills to reform Virginia go to die, and Senate Majority Dick Saslaw is the one who makes sure that happens. If Democrats lose the majority in the Virginia senate, those roadblocks go away, making Senate races the most important elections you will participate on November 8th.
Here’s the rundown of the candidates who will represent parts of Prince William County:
13th District (open)
This district was moved from southside during redistricting, and had been held by a Republican there. Dick Black is running against a political novice named Shawn Mitchell who strangely enough was firm in his support for Barack Obama during a cycle when Obama is utterly toxic to Democrats. With no incumbent in the race the American Conservative Union and the Family Foundation don’t have ratings on these candidates. Mitchell is endorsed by the homosexual lobby “Equality Virginia” and NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia PAC. Black is endorsed by the Conservative Caucus and the Family Research Council PAC, as well as by Governor McDonnell and Attorney General Cuccinelli. In this classic conservative vs. socialist matchup, Dick Black should get your vote.
Black seems to be leading pretty comfortably in this race, but there are a lot of overlapping races in this district where the “Black Brigade” can make a big difference for downballot candidates.
29th District (D)
Chuck Colgan is fighting for his political life in a pretty badly gerrymandered district against newcomer Tom Gordy who has run an absolutely solid campaign that Colgan didn’t expect. Colgan has an abysmal 50% rating from the Family Foundation and a 38% rating from the American Conservative Union — so much for “moderate” Chuck Colgan — who is desperately trying to evade his record for hiking taxes and supporting in-state tuition rates for illegal aliens. Gordy is a great pick here to rescue this District from Colgan who has enabled liberals to control the Senate of Virginia.
Colgan has been running the same campaign (even the same TV commercials) he used in 2003 and 2007, not realizing this would be a very different race in a very different environment than he faced in his last two races, and it’s been pretty ineffective. Colgan is in deep trouble this cycle, with Democrats (and even the SEIU) pouring in a lot of last-minute money trying save him. If Gordy can cut into Colgan’s traditional support in the Manassas area, this could be the biggest upset in the state on Tuesday night.
36th District (D)
Toddy Puller is in real trouble as Jeff Frederick jumping into this race was entirely unexpected by Democrats, who carefully tried to carve this horribly gerrymandered district (so bad you need a boat to traverse it) so that no Republicans with elected office experience were in it, but they missed one. Frederick has represented a significant portion of this district as a delegate and runs an incredibly hard-working grass-roots campaign effort. Puller is rated an abysmal 7% by the Family Foundation, and 0% by the American Conservative Union, and is endorsed by NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia and “Equality Virginia”. Jeff Frederick is endorsed by the Virginia Citizen’s Defense League, a pro-Second Amendment organization, the National Defense PAC and the National Federation of Independent Businesses. Frederick is definitely your pick, rather than the liberal true-believer Puller.
Flipping this seat would be a death blow to Democrat’s hopes of retaining the Senate majority and it looks like this is a very tight race. This one will come down to how well Frederick drives turnout in Prince William County and if previous experience is a guide, Frederick will do a great job with that.
39th District (D)
George Barker drew the Senate redistricting lines hoping they would help Democrats retain control of the Senate and despite some ridiculously drawn districts the monstrosity he created will likely fall. Instead of being the “moderate” he told voters he would be four years ago, Barker has earned a 6% rating from the Family Foundation and the title “True Liberal of the Old Dominion” from the American Conservative Union which rates him a zero. Barker is endorsed by NFIB, NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia, “Equality Virginia” and the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. His opponent Milller Baker is endorsed by VCDL, Governor McDonnell and PWC Chairman Corey Stewart. Miller Baker is a vastly superior pick here.
Miller Baker has run an outstanding campaign and appears to have Barker on the ropes. Barker is the second largest recipient of last minute money from the DPVA which is desperately trying to save him, as a loss of this seat would almost certainly mean a loss of the Democrat majority in the Senate. It’s gotten so bad for Barker that the SEIU is sending Barker money from New York, and Michael Bloomberg (who has been trying to enact gun control laws in Virginia) is helping fund this rescue. Turnout in Prince William County and the more conservative areas such as Clifton in Fairfax County are key to a Baker victory, while running close in other parts of this crazily-drawn district.
Note: Richard Stuart in the 28th Senate District does not have an opponent.
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