The likelihood of Brentsville Supervisor Wally Covington getting appointed to a judgeship has had conservatives in Prince William County talking a lot lately, especially after former Planning Commission and Soil and Water Board member Austin Haynes spent a bit of time talking with people about the possibility of running for the spot. Austin is known for subjecting himself to some pretty extreme physical challenges on his birthday as a means of raising money for some worthy county charities as well as being a pretty solid real estate investor and agent in the county. There’s hardly anyone out there who could utter an unkind word about the guy, he’s quite well plugged into the political class, he understands land use, rezoning and planning like nobody’s business and it’s quite likely he’d be pretty adept at raising money.
When Austin called me to talk about this idea, I suggested he talk with Chris Saxman, a former delegate who leads the Virginia Political Leadership Innovation Institute. Virginia PLII wants to groom business leaders as candidates for office and Saxman’s outlook on politics is pretty similar to Haynes’. Plus, Chris is a great guy and anyone with political and business instincts would enjoy the heck out of getting to know him. It’s not often I’m trying to connect potential candidates with people that I really think can help them, and it’s even rarer that I’d do so when they might be running against another friend in a nomination contest, but this seems to be the age of good friends being in friendly political competitions with each other and when this happens I just want one of them to prove they deserve it more by doing a better job campaigning and I’ll be happy to support the winner and congratulate the other candidate for doing a great job. It’s win-win.
Having Haynes and Jeanine Lawson compete for a Republican nomination in such a scenario was an interesting idea to consider given that these two like each other, neither would want to have an ugly race, and either one of them would do a phenomenal job. They bring different skills, qualities and experience as candidates, and it would be fascinating to see which one could mount a more effective campaign. Sure, this is Brentsville we’re talking about, so it’s not likely an issue of being the strongest candidate to wipe the floor with whatever Democrat is offered as a human sacrifice in this district, but good candidates and good elected officials do sometimes move on to higher office, and having at least one challenging election effort under their belt can be an awfully useful thing.
Alas, Austin says tonight on facebook that his physical recovery from the last self-punishment he administered in the name of charity would make it awfully difficult to run for office. I can understand that. I think his last charity goal was something like doing a hundred thousand push-ups in 24 hours on his last birthday so he could raise a few bucks for CASA, and now his shoulder sockets need surgery to keep his arms from falling off if he swings his arms while walking.
I want to thank all of those who have offered support and encouragement on the possibility of my running for a political office in the near future.
After weighing the pros and cons, I believe I could win. But after talking with my Doctor and others, I will not seek any office in 2014. I will instead concentrate on recovery and therapy from my shoulder injuries.
At this time I do not rule out a run for the White House in 2016, provided that Tom Masterson will agree to be my campaign manager. I figure one term on the Prince William Planning Commission qualifies me as well as our current President.
So perhaps next time there’s an opportunity we’ll see Mr. Slightly-Less-Than-Invincible make a run for some office. I look forward to that.
This could still end up being rather interesting. If Covington exits the Board of Supervisors, not only does Peter Candland get an ally on the board in the form of Jeanine Lawson, which would drive Chairman Corey “Pave The Rural Crescent Until It Screams” Stewart and Coles District Supervisor Marty “Let’s Have Another Taxpayer-Funded Vacation To Turkey” Nohe along with the county staff utterly nuts, but the number one recruiter of opponents against Brentsville School Board Member Gill Trenum steps aside from the political fray. Don’t think for a minute that the development interests that poured so much money into keeping Wally Covington in office so they could get their rezonings rammed through are going to sit back and admit defeat - they’re going to try to find someone to run against Lawson, whose mantra has been that development needs to be controlled so we have the public infrastructure needed to support that development before we drop another couple hundred houses on Vint Hill Road with no schools, roads, libraries, fire stations or police officers to serve those new houses.
Austin Haynes would not have been that guy for them, but developers would have certainly seen him as being someone more friendly to them and probably backed him. Heck, just about anyone they could get to run would be more friendly to developers than Jeanine Lawson, so now they need to find somebody, and quickly before this next session of the General Assembly gets underway which is expected to pluck Wally out of his current part-time job. They would be insane to run a Democrat, so they need to find some business-friendly Republican as an alternative to Lawson they can run.
Preferably someone who’d take a little ‘direction’ along with all of that campaign cash.
I wonder who that’s going to be…
The opinions expressed here are solely the views of the author, and not representative of the position of any organization, political party, doughnut shop, knitting guild, or waste recycling facility, but may be correctly attributed to the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy. If anything in the above article has offended you, please click here to receive an immediate apology.
Leave a Reply