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Decision Virginia Archive 8/08- 7/12

Posts Tagged ‘Terry McAuliffe

McAuliffe hammers GOP General Assembly

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Terry McAuliffe joined the chorus of democratic leaders hammering the General Assembly’s action on social issues in 2012.

See our full interview from NBC12 below:

Written by Ryan Nobles

February 23, 2012 at 9:17 pm

McAuliffe talking about the “party”, not DNC in critical comments

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It is the kind of declaration that could make for awkward company for a current statewide candidate and one who hopes to be a statewide candidate. Terry McAuliffe, a former and potentially future, candidate for governor of Virginia, was captured on camera giving his frank and brutal assessment of the national democratic party.

Take a look at his remarks at a fundraiser for Del. Scott Surovell.  The interesting stuff hits at about 6:40 of this video:

(h/t to Blue Virginia)

McAuliffe did not hold back on the state of the party, calling it a “disgrace” with “no message”.   He went on to say that the huge losses in the 2010 election were shameful.

The comments lead a few prominent democratic bloggers to draw a connection between McAuliffe’s statements on the democratic party to the national organization responsible for managing its operation, the DNC.  A DNC that was run by Chairman Tim Kaine during the time McAuliffe is critical of.

Kaine of course, is seeking the democratic nomination for U.S. Senate.

McAuliffe aide Levar Stoney told me that the blogosphere went too far.

“It doesn’t relate to Governor Kaine at all,” said Stoney. “Terry believes Kaine was aggressive in his role as Chairman, but he didn’t get any help.”

Help, Stoney said from the hundreds of democratic candidates across America who ran in 2010.  McAuliffe believes that many of them did not take the advice of Kaine to push and own the accomplishments of President Barack Obama. By going out on their own, McAuliffe contends the message became muddled.

“If we don’t have a message the Republicans will define it,” he can be heard saying on the video.

Stoney said that this stance is not anything McAuliffe is hiding from and that he has made the point numerous times since the election.  In fact he delivered almost identical remarks at the recent Loudon County Jefferson-Jackson. A dinner that was also attended by Tim Kaine.

Written by Ryan Nobles

May 11, 2011 at 6:17 pm

PolitiFact Virginia: McAuliffe’s claim on debt “true”

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He was making a point about Donald Trump, but the figure Terry McAuliffe threw out about U.S. debt owed to China caught the eye of the truth seekers at PolitiFact Virginia. Here is this week’s PolitiFact Virginia report.

Any true rating is welcome news to a man hoping to run for governor once again.

You can see all the details behind the report at PolitiFactVirginia.com .

Written by Ryan Nobles

May 6, 2011 at 5:50 pm

BREAKING: Webb will not seek re-election

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In a surprise statement released just a few minutes ago, Senator Jim Webb announced that he will not seek re-election to his post. The full statement is below:

Statement of Senator Jim Webb

Washington, DC–Today Senator Jim Webb (D-VA) issued the following statement:

Five years ago this week, on February 8, 2006, I announced my intention to run for the United States Senate.  We had neither campaign funds nor a staff.  We were challenged in a primary, and trailed the incumbent in the general election by more than 30 points in the polls.

Over the next nine months we focused relentlessly on the need to reorient our national security policy, to restore economic fairness and social justice, and to bring greater accountability in our government.  I will always be grateful for the spirit and energy that was brought into this campaign by thousands of loyal and committed volunteers.  Their enthusiasm and sheer numbers were truly the difference in that election.

It has been a great and continuing privilege to serve in the United States Senate.  I am very proud of my talented and dedicated staff, which has worked tirelessly to resolve the issues on which I based my candidacy, and to protect the interests of all Virginians in this national forum.  Among other contributions we have given our Post- 9/11 veterans the best GI Bill since World War Two; we have taken the lead in reforming our criminal justice system; we have led the way toward stronger relations in East and Southeast Asia; and we have been a strong voice in calling on China to act more responsibly in the world community. We will continue to work on these and other issues throughout the rest of my term.

However, after much thought and consideration I have decided to return to the private sector, where I have spent most of my professional life, and will not seek re-election in 2012.

Notwithstanding this decision, I have every intention of remaining involved in the issues that affect the well-being and the future of our country.


The list is now being populated with potential replacements for Webb as the Democratic nominee.

Gov. Tim Kaine- The obvious front-runner.  The current DNC Chairman is close friend of President Obama. Kaine has said in the past that he wouldn’t be interested (he told me during his last month in office that governor would be his last elected office), but a lot can change now that the seat is open.

Rep. Tom Perriello- A close friend of the White House, with liberal credentials but has run well in conservative regions. Perriello has proven himself as relentless on the campaign trail. The question is, will he be interested. conveniently he is traveling out of the country right now.

Rep. Rick Boucher- Boucher was a surprise loss for Democrats in Southwest Virginia. He left a lot of money in the bank, and didn’t seem ready to retire. Even though he is from coal country, his politics play well in Northern Virginia and he is very connected in D.C.

Rep. Glenn Nye- The one term conserva-dem from Virginia Beach was beat in November. However he is young and filled with ambition. Just like Perriello’s liberal side may play better statewide than in VA-5, Nye may think his moderate position makes him an attractive statewide candidate. Although, Nye has real issues with the Democratic party faithful.

Other names worth pointing out: Sen. Creigh Deeds, (who has run twice for statewide office) Del. Ward Armstrong(whose statewide ambitions are not a secret), Sen. Don McEachin (who has run statewide in the past), Mike Signer (former candidate for LG, close friend of Tom Perriello and ambitious)  and frankly.. just about every politician in Virginia who describes him/herself as a Democrat.

Who Won’t Run:

Terry McAuliffe- The former DNC Chairman and candidate for Governor has soundly rejected any thought about running for Senate. He told me a few weeks ago that he is “more the executive type”. I followed up with his staff today and they say his position has not changed despite the now open seat.

Gov. Doug Wilder- In a phone conversation this afternoon Wilder asked me “Do you know how old I am?” Wilder emphatically rejected any chance that he might run. He said that he is however concerned about who the Democrats might put up. “They need to develop a farm team,” he said. Wilder avoided making any kind of declarative statement on Tim Kaine’s worthiness as a candidate. He would only say that he is “certain they will all come out,” and that “One person I am not going to support is me.”

McAuliffe touts job creation efforts as he eyes ’13 run

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He is probably going to run for governor in 2013, but in the meantime former DNC Chairman Terry McAuliffe appears to be improving upon the weaknesses his opponents attacked him for in 2009.

The biggest attack from the ’09? That while the prominent democrat was a successful businessman, very little of his financial success led to jobs being created in Virginia.   A scathing Washington Post story during the primary campaign was used as fodder by McAuliffe’s rivals, Sen. Creigh Deeds and Brian Moran. (Deeds went on to win the primary by a wide margin)

At the time, McAuliffe told me that he never claimed to create jobs in Virginia.   He is hoping that by 2013 it will be a claim he can easily make.

McAuliffe has used his considerable personal wealth to purchase  a Virginia paper company and a Chinese electric car company. The car company, GreenTech Automotive,  is about to open a plant in Mississippi. The first completely American made electric car will roll off the assembly line in July.  McAuliffe then has plans for a “major” facility announcement later in the year, which could be a plant in Virginia.

“Three cargo ships are full of equipment which will be our first plant in Mississippi, and we’ll roll out our first car, all American made, on July 4th this year,” said McAuliffe.  “(We) will sell the cars back to China and to Europe, and here.”

And even though the cars will run on electricity drawn predominately from non-clean burning sources like coal, McAuliffe believes they will be a remarkable improvement over the internal combustion engines on the road right now.

“The electric vehicles are 90% more efficient than the internal combustion car engine,” he said.  “So, yes, you’re using electricity, but you’re only using 10%, if you use a gallon of gas, you use basically 10% of that for electricity.”

Most of  the current electric cars on the market cost somewhere in the $40,000 range, but McAuliffe said GreenTech’s first 100,000 vehicles will be sold for only $10,000.

If this company is successful, McAuliffe could be well on his way to convincing people that he is the job creator that he claims. An effort that would fit pretty well into a narrative for a second run for the Governor’s mansion.

My entire interview with McAuliffe can be seen below. You can see the complete transcript on NBC12.com.  In the interview, I also ask McAuliffe if he thinks Sen. Jim Webb will run for re-election.

Written by Ryan Nobles

January 20, 2011 at 7:35 pm

Moran elected DPVA Chairman

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As expected, former House Minority Leader and candidate for Governor, Brian Moran was elected the Chairman of the Democratic Party of Virginia.  Moran, who now works as a lobbyist for a group that supports for-profit higher education, easily beat an insurgent candidacy from Northern Virginia attorney Peter Rousselot.

Moran had the support of most of the party insiders and elected officials, including Senator Mark Warner. and former Governor and current DNC Chairman Tim Kaine (While there were rumors of Kaine’s behind the scenes support for Moran, the DNC Chair was publicly neutral). Moran’s win was welcomed by his former rival for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination Terry McAuliffe, who tweeted his congratulations to Moran moments after the vote. McAuliffe is widely expected to run again for Governor in 2013.

Moran’s candidacy was challenged by a few prominet Democratic bloggers who pleaded with their readership to elect Rousselot and thereby change the direction of the party. Their plea fell short as close to 200 party members elected Moran as Chair. While the Rousselot campaign did enjoy the very enthusiastic support of these bloggers, it is worth noting that Moran did have the support of a number of other active and influential lefty blog writers.

Moran takes office immediately.

The full statement from the DPVA can be found after the jump.

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ryan Nobles

December 4, 2010 at 4:54 pm

Webb won’t commit to 2012 run

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By: Ryan Nobles – bio | email

Virginia Senator Jim Webb is less than two years away from a re-election bid, a contest that by all measures will be difficult. But while many Democrats are huddling in strategy sessions preparing to reverse the current Republican tide, Webb doesn’t appear to be in any hurry to decide if he is even going to run.

In a fascinating profile on the Commonwealth’s senior Senator posted on RealClearPolitics.com, Webb won’t commit to a run in 2012. “Still sorting that out,” he said before adding. “I’m not saying I’m not.”

Webb’s ambivalence is alarming to Democrats because the man he beat, former Senator George Allen,  appears to already be running for his old seat.  Allen has written a book and has become a regular at GOP events large and small across Virginia.  In addition to his traditional stumping, Allen often appears on local TV and radio stations, while Webb rarely grants interviews to local reporters.   (Contrasted by his always available colleague Sen. Mark Warner, who will appear live on NBC12 First at 4 Wednesday)

While Webb has always done things his way, his resistance to state his plans has caught the attention of major media players like the Washington Post, which now ranks Virginia’s senate seat as the 5th most likely to change party hands.

Their ranking is in part, attributed to Webb’s lackluster fund raising.  He raised only $16,000 in the third quarter of 2010 and has $471,000 on hand. The Post has list of other incumbent Senators and how much they have raised by comparison.

While Webb is not ready to make a decision, don’t expect Democrats interested in running for the post to say a word until he is officially out.  The Post speculated, wisely that former Governor Tim Kaine would be a front runner for the slot.  However (and this is all speculation) don’t rule out Terry McAuliffe who is almost certain to run for Governor, but might be tempted to throw his statewide infrastructure into the mix early if the opportunity presented itself.  Another long shot possibility,  Rep. Tom Perriello. While Perriello just suffered a tough defeat, he drew the admiration of many for the fight he waged. Congressman rarely become statewide names, but the attention Perriello’s race drew and his visit from President Obama have made him very well known across Virginia. Perriello also is able to tap into a wide-ranging liberal fund-raising base that could help a potential statewide campaign. While Perriello has not given many details into his future plans, he has been tossed around in some circles as a potential statewide candidate.

Of course this all idle speculation until Webb makes his final decision. Webb spokesman Will Jenkins confirmed for me that the Senator has not made up his mind if he will run again, but he couldn’t offer a time line for when the decision might be made.

I also have some ideas as to who may be willing to challenge Allen for the Republican nod, especially if Webb is out of the mix. I’ll share them at a later date.

Written by Ryan Nobles

November 9, 2010 at 6:26 pm

Is it too early to talk 2013?

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By: Ryan Nobles – bio | email

Not for some people. Including a grassroots movement hoping to convince Northern Virginia Senator Chap Petersen to consider a race for Governor in 2013. Today, they released this web video on the left leaning blog Not Larry Sabato (run by former Petersen staffer Ben Tribbett), offering Petersen as a viable alternative to a presumed Ken Cuccinelli candidacy:

The ad is more anti-Cuccinelli than it is pro-Petersen. But it is an early indication of how sides are already being drawn in what will be a competitive race for the governorship in 2013.

Perhaps the reason that the ad is more about Cuccinelli and less about Petersen is because the Democratic field, 3 and half years out, is already starting to get crowded.  Supporters of Petersen are hoping to strike a chord of unification among Democrats and at this point of 2010, nothing unifies Democrats more than Ken Cuccinelli.

Democrats appear to be trying to get a head start, in an effort to prevent what happened in 2009. A bitter primary amongst three candidates, that didn’t really get their campaigns moving until late 2008, or in some cases early 2009.  Instead of the field stocking up in late 2012, several Democrats are looking to make their name now, perhaps in an effort to “clear the field.”  It is a prospect that is much easier given that there is no clear alternative voice to what is a Commonwealth with three statewide elected Republicans running the show.

So who is attempting to make a name for themselves?

First the Democrats:

*Terry McAuliffe- At this point any conversation about the Democratic candidates for Governor must begin with the former DNC chair. McAuliffe has the most money and the most friends in high places. (You saw him with Mick Jagger and Bill Clinton at the World Cup right?) McAuliffe was dismissive with me on First at 4 when we asked directly about his interest in running for Governor, but finding people who don’t think he is running is a difficult proposition. He and his formidable wealth will be difficult for any prospective candidate to contend with, but it has obviously been done before.  This time around though, McAuliffe is spending 4 years building an infrastructure, instead of 4 months.

*Del. Ward Armstrong- The ranking Democrat in the House of Delegates is slowing building a reputation as an outspoken alternative to the McDonnell agenda. Armstrong is liked by many, is an eloquent speaker and has strong support in the south and west where Democrats typically aren’t very strong. However, Democrats are still smarting over their experiment with a similar candidate in Creigh Deeds and some are already sounding alarm bells about his stance on issues like gun control. Armstrong seem poised to take the leap and he will be difficult to ignore.

*Sen. Chap Petersen- who has attempted statewide runs before unsuccessfully is in many ways the anti-Deeds. A sharp, articulate Northern Virginian, Petersen is rock-solid on the key issues that Democrats care about. His problem is one of anonymity. Petersen’s name identification is low and he would be forced to raise a lot of money to change that scenario. It’s a scenario that becomes even more difficult when you consider Terry McAuliffe will be dumping millions to make sure he does not go 0-2 in Democratic primaries.

Other names are bound to emerge, such as former House Democratic leader Brian Moran, Sen. Donald McEachin a one time candidate for Attorney General and even Rep. Tom Perriello who if he is successful this year (which is not a given) has the potential to be a rock star in the Virginia Democratic party.

What about the Republicans?

While names may pop up between now and then make no mistake, this is a two-man race. The two men who have already been elected statewide and will have to meet face to face to determine who gets to be the party standard-bearer.

*Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling- Bolling has already stepped aside for the good of the party, when he did not challenge Bob McDonnell for the party’s nomination. Now he stands poised to be anointed the party nominee. McDonnell has already hinted at Bolling being his heir apparent and the LG is already raising cash in preparation for a tough race. Bolling is a rock solid, experienced politician who rarely makes a mistake. However, he is also not that kind that elicits excitement from the party base.  He is hoping Republicans remember what he did to leave the field open for McDonnell to win by a landslide. He is hoping the same courtesy is extended to him.

*Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli- For the record, Cuccinelli has never expressed an interest in running for Governor. Privately, his close associates say that he is not interested in becoming the Chief Executive. He is a lawyer by trade and serving as Attorney General is for him the pinnacle. That was of course before Cuccinelli became a media super star. Love him or hate him, the AG has received perhaps the most exposure of any official in Virginia. He has turned that into a fund-raising network around the country. His support from the base is electric. His opposition on the left is dangerous. Cuccinelli will be in position to make a run. The question is, will he want to do it?

My guess is that it won’t be long until this post becomes old news. Many of the candidates will step aside and new ones will probably emerge. I think I answered my own question. It is never too early to talk about the next election.

Any guesses for candidates in 2017?

McAuliffe claims McDonnell not doing enough to create jobs

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Terry McAuliffe, the former Chairman of the Democratic National Committee said that it is too early to start the talk about 2013. However,  Monday on NBC12 First at 4, the prominent Democrat built the case that Bob McDonnell is not focusing on the things important to Virginians. McAuliffe rapped McDonnell on his Confederate History Month proclamation and his decision to not extended sexual discrimination protections. He said that those type of stands detract from what Virginians need the most: new jobs.

“We’ve got to encourage businesses to move to Virginia,” said McAuliffe. “It’s very competitive today, let’s not put something in the way that doesn’t look like we are making are arms open for people to come to Virginia.”

McAuliffe also said that he and McDonnell’s budget priorities would’ve been sharply different. He said the push to open highway rest stops, was not as important teacher’s jobs. However, when pressed on his plan to close the budget gap without raising taxes, the Democrat said it would be difficult for him to say, because he “wasn’t in on final budget negotiations.”

You can see the entire interview from NBC12 First at 4 below:

Written by Ryan Nobles

April 27, 2010 at 7:45 am

Today: Terry McAuliffe on NBC12 First at 4

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Have you been wondering, “whatever happened to Terry McAuliffe?”. The former Chairman of the Democratic National Committee and candidate for Governor of Virginia has been very active since he fell to Sen. Creigh Deeds in the 2009 Democratic Primary.  Active to the point that many already consider him a candidate for Governor in 2013.

As outlined in the Washington Post Virginia Politics blog, McAuliffe is staffing up, traveling and acting very much like a man poised to take another run at the Commonwealth’s top office. In addition to his work trying to drum up new business in Virginia, McAuliffe has been very active politically. He teamed up with Governor George Allen to tout a plan to help schools invest in upgrades to buildings, he made an appearance at this year’s Shad Planking and he even gave his opinion on Governor Bob McDonnell‘s decision to honor Confederate History Month.

Mr. McAuliffe is in Richmond today (Monday) and will join me live on NBC12 First at 4. You can see the live interview on NBC12-TV and streamed live on NBC12.com.

I’ll have a recap of his interview later on Decision Virginia.

Written by Ryan Nobles

April 26, 2010 at 12:08 pm


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