Montgomery County Democrats Rallied

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     From around the state and closer to home as well, key Democrats arrived at the Montgomery County (VA) Government Center yesterday. There were two former governors, one DPVA chair, the 9th District Democratic Chair.  From further south, Phillip Puckett was here. An energetic Tom Perriello made me nostalgic for when he was in Congress and reminded why he is so missed. As if “at home” in the 9th, Tim Kaine, was here early speaking with citizens (and always listening too). At the podium Tim talked about the importance of winning Tuesday and about the need for retaining the US Senate seat now held by Jim Webb.


    Races decided by single digits, double digits, a hundred votes. That is why I know turnout, calling people, knocking on doors, talking about it at work or school, reminding people Tuesday is Election Day is so important

    Tim told of several instances of election history turning on narrow margins. Indeed several speakers had been in extremely close races. But none struck so saliently as the reminder that AG Kookinelli’s Senate race before his AG race was won by a narrow margin. How different things might have looked…

    More (including more photos) below the fold…

    Senator Mark Warner walked to the podium to a standing ovation.  He distanced himself from both the President and the rest of Congress, and made a not-so-subtle pitch for his quasi-centrism and his brand  of draconian deficit reduction deal. But he made a compelling case for the Democratic slate in Virginia, especially for John Edwards. So many issues hang by a thread. Speaker after speaker reminded that we are just one election away from becoming like Wisconsin or Ohio. That much is at stake.

    The highly esteemed former state Senator Madison Marye stood in for John Edwards and did his “Uncle Billy” routine, a time-honored tradition. Marye was gerrymandered out of his district the last time redistricting occurred. One by one and two-by-two the Republican map manipulating elves have picked off democratic and Democratic (with a big D) representation.

    Today we have an accomplished Senator who deserves re-election. Edwards has actually brought hundreds of jobs to our area, contrasted to his opponent, Dave Nutter who has brought zip (but pretends that he is magically a “jobs candidate”–the idiot doesn’t even know slashing budgets and austerity cost job. Hmmmmm… maybe someone else preaching austerity should keep that in mind. But that is subject for another day). Edwards has brought connector transportation to make passenger rail more accessible for those of us without it.He’s been the foremost advocate for education on our side of the state. A former prosecutor, Edwards is an highly regarded attorney as well.

    HoD (District 12) candidate, Blacksburg Councilman Don Langrehr showed what a qualified, experienced, and principled candidate for Dist 12 looks and sounds like. Langrehr has been part of the progressive team on council which has brought hundreds of good paying (not minimum wage) jobs to our town. He and his fellow progressives on council actually run our town government of, for and by the people. Imagine if that were the case everywhere!  (Meanwhile Don’s no-show opponent, twenty-five-year-old Joseph Yost, who has never run for public office before, and who is too ignorant to even appear side-by-side with Don, has hidden from candidate forums and raised only a few thousand within the district. Yost gets nearly all of his financial “support” from outside the district. Yost is probably the most purchased/owned/puppet  candidate ever to run from this area.)

    Pictured below are Tim Kaine, Tom Perriello, Jon Bowerbank, and Don Langrehr (candidate for House District 12). John Edwards was not present, but at another event in Roanoke.

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    Below are photos of local Democratic leaders and candidates: Steve Cochran (Montgomery County Democratic Chair; Tommy Whitt, County Sheriff (and candidate for re-election); Mary Biggs, District F Board of Supervisors member (running unopposed); Matt Gabriel, District G Board of Supervisors candidate; Richard Shelton, Treasurer (and candidate for re-election); and former Senator Madison Marye. We have a great sheriff, Tommy Whitt, who practices law enforcement with expertise, integrity, strength and compassion. Richard Shelton quite literally brought the office of Treasurer into both the 20th and 21st Centuries. The list of improvements he has brought is almost endless. He has improved efficiency, customer service, accuracy and collections. That Mary Biggs is running unopposed speaks for itself. She’s an energetic and dedicated public servant who has solid and deserved support in her heavily Democratic district. I do not see her being unseated any time soon.  

    A few races not mentioned above are the following: In other districts (than my own) Democrat Johnny Puckett is running for District B Board of Supervisors.  Popular former Blacksburg police chief Bill Brown (D) is running for re-election in District E. Veteran employee in the Commissioner of the Revenue’s office, Helen Royal is also running as a Democrat. Our Democratic Clerk of Court is not up for re-election this year.  Democrats had no challenger for the Commonwealth Attorney position and thus the incumbent Republican runs unopposed.

    I am proud of our Democratic candidates and will vote for each of those on my ballot without reservations. That in itself is a particular joy this election day. And so I would like to say, “Here’s to our Montgomery County candidates. Thank you for your service and for running this November.”