With Albert Pollard (D, HOD-99) retiring, we Democrats in the 99th House of Delegates district have a fight on our hands.
The Republicans held a primary that was won by Margaret Ransone of Westmoreland County who got 61 percent of the Republican vote, in spite of attacks from two directions by her opponents.
Ransone is a formidable candidate, assisted in no small measure by several fairly big donors. According to VPAP, she now has over $42,000 on hand. She raised $114,000 and spent $87,000 on the primary.
We can expect the VA Republican Party to give her a lot of help in hopes of picking up Al Pollard’s former seat and giving them a +1 in November.
The Democratic candidate is Nick Smith, a young attorney from Montross who is running his campaign on a shoestring . . . and I mean a shoestring. I’ve heard Nick speak twice and spent some time with him yesterday, one-on-one.
Nick is an excellent candidate . . . and not just because he’s a Democrat.
Follow below the fold for why I think Nick should get a lot of love from the DPVA, voters in HOD-99, and Democrats across VA.
Nick has three things going for him: (1) He’s serious about job creation; (2) He’s serious about GOVERNING; and, (3) He’s serious about representing everyone in his district, not just the special interests that support him.
Let’s examine these in detail.
Republicans sing the Johnny-One-Note song about how jobs will be created if we just reduce taxes on the wealthy and remove regulations from businesses. That hasn’t worked so far and it’s not going to work.
Nick, on the other hand, has spent time studying what has worked in other areas of Virginia, particularly in SW VA where, in Russell County, a technology education center has provided the foundation for job creation. This center was a spin-off of Governor Warner’s Technology Corridor.
Nick wants to bring the same focus to the depressed areas of HOD-99 — and we have a lot of them. The Virginia Northern Neck, which comprises much of the land area of HOD-99, is similar to SW VA: Dependence on a single industry ; young people leaving because there’s no future here; and, local boards of supervisors who are happy with things as they are. What is working in SW VA can work here and Nick wants to tackle the jobs question with more than rightwing platitudes.
Nick is a graduate of the Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership at UVA.
The Institute has selective admission, seeking only students who are serious about the real business of politics — governing — not grabbing power for power’s sake.
The Institute focuses on three areas:
— Ethics in public service;
— Power of bipartisanship; and,
— Analysis of current and future issues.
Nick’s training and contacts through the Institute reflect his serious focus on governing, not on party politics.
Representing the entire HOD-99
Nick is committed to represent the entire District. Next week, he is speaking to the monthly meeting of the 99th District Tea Party in Lively, Lancaster County. When was the last time a Republican spoke to your county or district Democratic committee?
We need Nick Smith in the HOD. If you are in the 99th HOD District, learn more about Nick, talk him up to your friends, donate to his campaign, hold a house party, put up a yard sign. If you aren’t in the 99th, do what you can to help.