Archive for March 2009
Terry McAuliffe‘s campaign probably hoped that the flap over a fundraiser organized by GOP consultant Ed Rogers was behind them. Brian Moran‘s campaign has decided that it is not.
Today the Moran camp released a litany of statements from Democratic supporters hamming McAuliffe’s connection to Rogers and his decision to take part in the fundraiser. The Moran camp said the statement was released in response to the Washington Post article discussing the controversy.
The Moran campaign described the event as an “anti-Obama” fundraiser and provided examples of Rogers being critical of the President. The language may be the harshest words exchange between the two campaigns since the primary began.
The full release is after the jump…
Read the rest of this entry »
With the retirement last week of longtime Delegate Frank Hall, a prominent district has opened in the House of Delegates and already potential candidates are lining up. Among them is Democratic Party of Virginia Executive Director Levar Stoney. Stoney is a rising star in Democratic Party circles who rose to prominence in the state party ranks at a relatively young age. He also is the first African American to hold the post of Executive Director in the DPVA.
A pretty well organized effort is afoot to “draft” Stoney to run for Hall’s open seat in Virginia’s 69th District which includes portions of Chesterfield and Richmond. A new blog has emerged (www.draftstoney.wordpress.com) and a companion twitter account. The two tout Stoney’s leadership at DPVA and encourages voters to support Stoney as the “real democrat” in Virginia’s 69th district.
It is very rare that websites like these aren’t in some way connected to the potential candidate. The blog itself does not provide any contact information or clue as to who is behind this “grassroots” movement.
Of course, if Stoney officially declares himself a candidate that would raise questions about his continued role as the administrative head of the party. I have an inquiry to to DPVA as to Stoney’s position on this new movement. I have also DM’d the twitter account asking for more info. I will let you know what I hear.
Style Weekly just posted a story about the race in the 69th district that includes a lengthy list of potential candidates. In the article they say Levar Stoney confirmed that he is considering a run.
Embattled Republican Party of Virginia chairman Jeff Frederick is now less than a week away from a critical meeting that could decide his fate. Frederick has endured calls for his resignation from the party’s candidate for Governor, It’s entire congressional delegation, the leadership of the State Senate and a good portion of the leadership of the House of Delegates. He has pinned his hopes on an upcoming April 4th meeting where he says he has the votes to survive if a challenge were made to his leadership.
The conservative blog Bearing Drift is reporting today that Frederick may not make it to that April 4th meeting. They say rumors are swelling that the chairman could step down on Friday, the day before that meeting is set to take place. However, I just heard from the party’s spokesman Gerry Scimeca who told me that those rumors are “absolutely not true”. He went on to say that Frederick has retained counsel to help fight for his position on Saturday.
While this was all taking place, Frederick and party central continued on as if nothing was wrong. They continued to send out their weekly e-mail alerts and put out press releases announcing speakers to the upcoming RPV convention and congratulating a Republican winner in a local election in Northern Virginia. Frederick is not acting like he is going anywhere. It appears he is willing to take this fight until the bitter end.
Former Attorney General Bob McDonnell, the presumptive nominee for the Republican nomination for Governor held a rousing rally in Henrico on Saturday. The rally was part of a series of event designed to formally kickoff his campaign for the Commonwealth’s top office.
McDonnell was joined at the event by all three candidates for the Republican nomination for Attorney General and his running mate and the current incumbent Lt. Governor Bill Bolling. I wasn’t at the event but watched the tape back after our photographer Richard Garner returned and wanted to share a few key moments which I think define the McDonnell campaign.
McDonnell clearly needs to separate himself from the Republican brand. If this event is any indication of how he plans to do that, it will come on the backs of three populist issues, which he believes conservatives have the winning argument: taxes, energy and the economy, most specifically job creation.
He has already been running for Governor for close to a year, but on Saturday former Attorney General Bob McDonnell will officially kick off his campaign for the commonwealth’s top office. McDonnell will make a swing around the state at a series of rallies including one here in Richmond.
Aside from a nasty intra-party squabble involving the RPV chairman Jeff Frederick, McDonnell’s campaign has gone off as well as one could hope. He has raised a pretty significant amount of cash, unified the party’s base and successfully convinced national Republicans that this race could be an important step in the party’s turnaround.
A few early polls have shown the former AG to be running a strong campaign against whichever Democrat emerges, but election day is still very far away. Democrats are already throwing a few early shots his way and things will only get more tough once the primary is out of the way and the national party led by a popular Barack Obama and his DNC chair, (who happens to know a thing or two about Virginia gubernatorial campaigns) get involved.
It is early, but you can bet Team McDonnell wants tomorrow to go off without a hitch.
The details for tomorrow’s event in Richmond and the Democratic rebuttal are after the jump..
Richmond area Delegate Frank Hall just put out a release announcing his intention to retire from the Virginia House of Delegates. Hall plans on stepping down effective April 14.
He has represented the 69th District for 34 sessions.
The full release is below:
~ Del. Frank Hall to retire from House of Delegates ~
RICHMOND—Delegate Franklin P. Hall announced today his intention to retire as a member of the Virginia House of Delegates, representing the 69th district, effective April 14th, 2009
“As I prepare to leave the General Assembly – after 34 sessions – I would be remiss if I did not take this opportunity to thank the people of this community for the confidence they have placed in me. Serving in the House of Delegates has been a privilege, a pleasure, and a great honor.”
“By working with constituents, consumers, advocates, and each other, we have been able to foster a public policy that promoted programs designed to better serve the public interest.”
“Working together, we have been able to enhance the Commonwealth’s reputation as well-governed, compassionate, and business friendly. For this opportunity I am immensely grateful to the people of the 69th district.”
Terry McAuliffe‘s campaign is attempting to deflect criticism from rival Brian Moran by using the fracas to raise money. Moran’s camp recently called a fundraiser organized by GOP strategist Ed Rogers “offensive”. McAuliffe’s staff was quick to defend him, saying the consulting operation that ran the event was “bi-partisan” and an example of his ability to work with people of all stripes.
In addition to this very public attack, the McAuliffe campaign has also taken some behind-the-scene heat that the former DNC chair was not a strong enough supporter of Barack Obama during the presidential election.
Yesterday, McAuliffe’s campaign manager Mike Henry sent out an e-mail to supporters the rebuts claims of a variety of different issues. The e-mail contains a button that directs supporters to the campaign’s donation page. The e-mail also repeatedly links to a page off the McAuliffe web site that aims to report the “facts” related to his campaign. Not only does the page deal with the recent controversies, but just about every issue that has come up related to McAuliffe since the campaign began.
Meanwhile McAuliffe will open a campaign office in Richmond on Saturday. The details are below:
2:00 pm Terry McAuliffe Attends Richmond Office Opening
Friends of Terry McAuliffe Office
408 W Franklin Street
Richmond, VA 23220
Democratic candidate for Governor Brian Moran will be in Richmond on Thursday to make a major announcement about how he plans to use Virginia’s portion of the federal stimulus plan.
Moran will appear at the local small business “Styles Unlimited” on Concord Avenue in the city. The stop in Richmond is one of many Moran will make in his Economic Recovery Tour of the commonwealth.
Here are the details:
Moran to Announce Economic Stimulus and Recovery Plan
RICHMOND – Brian Moran will announce his Economic Recovery and Stimulus Plan for Virginia as part of his “Economic Recovery Tour” at a small business in Richmond on Thursday.
WHEN: Thursday, March 26, 2009 at 1:30 p.m.
WHERE: Styles Unlimited
1220 Concord Ave
Richmond, VA 23228
Moran has held stops in Charlottesville and Norfolk.
In other news…
All three Democratic campaigns put out a join press release today announcing their plans for 5 debates and 3 joint forums. Only one of the events will be held in Richmond. Here is the list:
The three campaigns agreed to the following debates:
* April 19th: Farm Team Debate in Williamsburg
* April 23rd: Virginia Education Association’s Convention Debate in Hampton
* April 28th: Sorensen Institute/Danville Register & Bee Debate in Danville Debate in Blacksburg
* May 19th: Washington Post/Northern Virginia Community College Debate in Annandale
Deeds, McAuliffe, and Moran have also agreed to make joint appearances at the following forums:
* April 3rd: Northern Virginia Technology Council/Microsoft Forum in McLean
* April 21st: Crusade for Voters Forum in Richmond
* TBD: Democratic Club of Greensprings Forum in Greensprings
Terry McAuliffe‘s campaign has responded to his opponent’s charge that his recent fundraiser hosted by a DC consulting firm is “offensive”. McAuliffe campaign press secretary Lis Smith described the BGR group as a “bipartisan” firm and includes associates that have worked on a number of democratic campaigns including Hillary Clinton‘s. She said that McAuliffe needs all the resources he can to compete against Bob McDonnell in the fall.
Here is the statement:
“The Republican Party isn’t being shy about the resources they are going to put into this race. The McDonnell campaign just recently said that they would “break every fundraising record in Virginia.”
“Terry knows that the race for governor is going to be very competitive, which is why he is working hard to ensure that he has the resources he needs to build a large grassroots campaign. His ability to work with individuals of both parties, including those at the bipartisan BGR Group, is one of the strengths he brings to this campaign, and it is a skill that will serve him well in the governor’s office.
“With all of their concern about associating with people who attack Democrats, only one campaign in this race is actively attacking other Democrats. And it’s not Terry McAuliffe. He’s going to stay focused on how to create jobs in Virginia.”
It has also been pointed out to me that Haley Barbour has divested his interest in the BGR group. Barbour is a frequent target of liberal critics and happens to be the vice-chair of the Republican Governor’s Association, which certainly has an interest in seeing Bob McDonnell win come November.
Left leaning blogs have been buzzing about it for days, but this morning Terry McAuliffe‘s decision to hold a fundraiser at a Republican consulting group officially became a campaign issue. The campaign for his opponent, Brian Moran put out a statement hammering the move and called it “offensive” .
McAuliffe was feted by the prestigious GOP firm BGR which is run was founded by Republican insider Ed Rogers and Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour. Politico is reporting that McAuliffe and Rogers became friends after meeting in green room after green room before appearing as talking heads on cable news shows.
A number of lefty blogs started voicing their opposition to the move and the wave seems to be enough for the Moran camp to issue a statement. It came from campaign manager Ed Roos who wrote:
“It’s offensive to see Terry McAuliffe raising money with the likes of Republican operative and lobbyist Ed Rogers. Rogers joined Rush Limbaugh and others in raising racially and religiously charged attacks against then Senator Obama. It’s sad that in the same week Terry McAuliffe aired a radio ad claiming credit for helping to elect Barack Obama, he’s holding a fundraiser with someone who did everything he could to defeat him. We need people who stand up to partner with President Obama in the White House not people who condone these kinds of Rove-style attacks.”
I have a request in to the McAuliffe campaign for a response to the Moran camp charge. I will update you if I get one.